PENALTY | 20 July, 2019

Nilesh Sakhiya, Rudrakshh Films and Tenzanite Pictures’ Penalty is a film about football as a sport.

Lukram (Lukram Smil) is from Manipur and wants to play national football. Towards this end, he joins a college in Luck­now but he faces issues of racism and discrimination. Although coach Parth (Shashank Arora) wants him in the colle­ge team, manager Vikram (Kay Kay Menon) makes sure that he is out of the team because Vikram doesn’t want ‘out­siders’. Vikram does not hate Lukram, but he is averse to the fact that he is from Manipur and, therefore, an ‘outsider’.

A dejected Lukram returns to his vill­age in Manipur. But he comes back to Lucknow once again. Coach Parth helps him by introducing him to another team. Lukram plays well for the new team. In a final competition between the team in which Lukram is a player, and his erst­while college team, Lukram exhibits a rare sense of sportsman spirit. That’s when Vikram lectures Lukram about the futility of exhibiting sportsman spirit in a world which only takes note of winners.

Akhilesh Choudhary and Sparsh Khet­arpal have penned a very routine and predictable story. There is little by way of novelty. The duo’s screenplay is so clich­éd that it fails to involve or engage the audience. The thrill of a sport is almost completely missing despite it being a sports drama. Dialogues, written by Shubham Singh and Tasha Bhambra, are so-so.

Lukram Smil does a fair job as Luk­ram. Kay Kay Menon is good as manager Vikram. Shashank Arora acts well as coach Parth. Manjot Singh lends fair sup­port as Lukram’s friend, Ishwar. Aakash Dabhade is okay in the role of coach Chandan. Bijou Thaangjam is okay as Bijou.

Shubham Singh’s direction is not upto the mark. Sidhant Madhav’s music is of hardly any merit. Lyrics (Azeem Shirazi, Atiq Allahabadi, Ozil Dalal and Sidhant Madhav) don’t deserve separate men­tion. Mannan Munjal’s background music is dull. Camerawork (Mateusz Golebiewski) is commonplace. Abbas Ali Moghul’s action and stunt scenes are routine. Sachin Bhoir’s production designing is average. Santosh Mandal’s editing leaves something to be desired.

On the whole, Penalty is a flop show and will score no goal at the box-office.

Released on 19-7-’19 at Gem (daily 1 show) and other cinemas of Bombay thru Neev Enterprises. Publicity: fair. Opening: dull. …….Also released all over. Opening was weak everywhere.