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Guru Shishyaru

Guru Shishyaru Movie Review

by rameshe

Critic’s Rating : / 5

Guru Shishyaru Movie Review : Guru Shishyaru leads by a whisker

Plot: Set in the early 90s, former Kho-Kho national champion Manohar (Sharan) is now a lethargic man, who lives with his guru (Dattanna) in a small house. He gets a job offer as a PT teacher in an aided school in Bettadapura village. He relocates to the village and blends well with students and villagers. Rudrappa (Apoorva Kasaravalli) is hell-bent on confiscating the village to start iron mining. A game of Kho-Kho will decide the fate of the village and its residents.

Newly appointed PT teacher Manohar takes PT teacher’s job to pass time. He shows up at Bettadapura village and gains students’ trust. There is already a ready-made Kho Kho team in the school, looking for the right coach to help them achieve further. But Manohar, instead of enrolling them in competitions, takes them across Karnataka at villagers’ cost and returns with fake cups and medals. Shiny cups helps him gain villagers’ trust. While the job is just a year-long commitment for him, villagers look up to him as a messiah who has come to save the village. Rudrappa is looking for a right opportunity to throw villagers out of Bettadapura. During a verbal duel, village chief pledges the village for a game of Kho-Kho. Will Sharan and team succeed?

Sports dramas are very predictable because they follow a similar story-telling pattern – former successful coach leading the team to victory. Guru Shishyaru too falls under the same category, but what saves this film is Sharan, the young lads and several goosebump moments in the second half. Sharan as a player and a coach has done a brilliant job. The role is very different from what we have seen him in all these years. Comedy is his forte and he makes good use of it throughout the film. He knows how to take command of the team while also being their best friend. Nishvika’s role is limited and she has done a neat job. Dattanna and Suresh Heblikar as wise-old men who lead the way have played their roles to perfection. The only misfit is Apoorva Kasaravallli. The role demanded an actor who is lot more commanding and serious. All the students have given their best; the training seems to have paid off well. They all seem very promising.

Kho Kho, unlike other popular games, is an unfamiliar territory. The film sheds ample light on the rural game, which takes as much determination, skill and endurance as any other game. The film does have its moments, but it could have been better. Director Jadesh Kumar Hampi deserves a pat on the back for his brave attempt, but formulaic approach makes it a tad weaker. First half takes off well with Sharan’s mischief moments thus leading to a stronger second half. The film has several nostalgic scenes and scenic village adds gravitas to the storyline. Creative touch during a Kho-Kho match sets this film a bit apart.

Placement of songs has worked in favour of the film. BGM in sports drama is the most important one and Guru Shishyaru scores in that category. Players’ wins aided by a strong BGM creates several memorable moments for sports enthusisats. The film too has its own Sattar Minute (Famous monologue from Chak De India) scene. The film is a must-watch and gives a much-needed break from mindless action films with its honest and neat making.

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