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21-gun salute for Irrfan Khan and Dhulia for Paan Singh Tomar
Not a conventional film, Paan Singh Tomar has all the right ingredients to stand out. However, we..

PAAN  SINGH Tomar is getting a lot of pats for Irrfan Khan and Director Tigmanshu Dhulia for bringing in a dacoit story who calls himself a ‘Baghi’ and refers to politicians in Parliament as dacoit. Dhulia has brought before us the story of a man who was denied his rights in real life.

So is this the only thing that made the film tick? We have to consider the fact that it's after a long time a film about a dacoit and his journey is being told on film, which will add to the freshness of appeal to movie-goers. Irrfan Khan is as usual brilliant as Paan Singh Tomar, who joins the Indian army and is much more interested in the camp food than service. However, other people around him can see a rebel in his eyes. Irrfan Khan is a good choice for the film as he acts a lot with small facial movements that are needed for the role.

Tigmanshu Dhulia, who has established himself for doing films that are different from the usual Bollywood genre, has struck gold with Paan Singh Tomat. He has not only bought out the story of a man who has been crushed by administration to the point of becoming a dacoit but has also executed the journey of a rural man, interested in food to becoming a first class athlete to become a dacoit. This lifelong journey and all the various key moments of the protagonist have been packed well in a three-hour movie. The fact that Dhulia assisted Shekhar Kapoor in Bandit Queen might have helped him immensely to tell the story.

After joining army and becoming a seven-time National Champion in Steeplechase, Tomar is forced to take up arms as he is not helped by police at a time that becomes the turning point of the film. His cousin Bhanwar Singh takes over his land in Madhya Pradesh and in the process he loses his mother and is compelled to take things in his own hand. For a rural man his land is his pride and source of income and to be denied that was something that trigged the rebel in Tomar. Even today this issue is yet to be sorted out and after Paan Singh Tomar, we should think that how many Tomar Singh might be born for industrial development. The nuances of Society and the way rural India used to think are focused on throughout the film.
Dhulia has taken some very good shots of the Chambal Ghatti, home to many dacoits. As reported in, the playful romance between Paan Singh Tomar and his wife is marked with the undercurrent of intensity and Mahie Gill plays the rural wife to perfection. Already known as Dhulia’s muse, Gill brings the silent rural women alive with her character. Inspite of the fact that the film is for Irrfan, no one can ignore her.

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