Who doesn’t love a happy film that celebrates an underdog’s triumphs? Most sports biopics fall under this category, focussing on the scope of human talent and grit. This Friday’s release, Shabaash Mithu, is one such film based on the life of one of India’s biggest names in cricket, Mithali Raj. Mithali Raj is one of the brightest stars in women’s cricket around the world and her story has been brought to a wider audience through a spirited performance by Taapsee Pannu. The film directed by Srijit Mukherji, has been produced by Viacom18 Studios. If Bollywood’s latest sports biopic has left you asking for more, we are here to help.
Here’s a list of inspiring sports dramas from around the world to add to your weekend binge list.
Bhaag Milkha Bhaag – Disney + Hotstar
The biopic on Milkha Singh and his extraordinary achievements features Farhan Akhtar in the lead role. Following the athlete through the Partition, his first love and his Olympic performance, the film is a fitting tribute to the Flying Sikh.
Invictus – Prime Video
Invictus, directed by Clint Eastwood and starring Morgan Freeman and Matt Damon, is a story that depicts the power of sports in the darkest of times. The film is based on the efforts made by Nelson Mandela during the 1995 Rugby World Cup with a team that becomes the catalyst to unite a country torn apart of apartheid and a tragic history.
Paan Singh Tomar – Netflix
In a country that seldom celebrates a game other than cricket or football, Paan Singh Tomar is the heartbreaking story of a man who instead of being heralded as a national hero for his athletic skills is forced to become a dacoit. The film features the legendary actor, late Irrfan Khan as the titular character and will leave you feeling uncomfortable and responsible.
Mary Kom – Netflix
Mary Kom features Priyanka Chopra in the role of the champion boxer, who has won several laurels for the nation. While the film received criticism for not having an actor of Manipuri descent in Mary Kom’s role, Priyanka’s performance added gravitas to a story that needed to be heard as a lesson in grit, power and passion.
M.S. Dhoni: The Untold Story – Disney + Hotstar
M.S. Dhoni: The Untold Story features the late Sushant Singh Rajput in the titular role and is an inspiring story of a man with a dream. The film features the cricketer’s journey from his home town in Jharkhand to becoming one of the most successful captains of the game.
Tell us your pick from the list. Happy viewing!