Director- Sudhanshu Sharma
Cast- Kay Kay Menon, Swastika Mukherjee, Atul Srivastava, Raja Bundela, Sumit Arora and Shriswara Dubey
Platform of Release- Theatres
By Jyothi Venkatesh
This film is a sensitive one which deals with the tussle between a former badminton champion (Kay Kay Menon), who is dead against his son Aaditya (Ark Jain) pursuing any sport, disillusioned by politicizing of the sport and an incident during his heyday. What happens when the young boy defies his father and chooses badminton at school, and whether the bitter father supports the future champ forms the crux of the subject matter.
Siddharth Sharma is a stern man who wants his son, Aaditya, to have nothing to do with sports, so much so that Siddharth doesn’t even let the poor boy play and also goes to the extent of locking up his window facing the playground. Behind this austerity is Siddharth’s past as a badminton champ and his thwarted dreams, thanks to the disgruntled politics in the school’s sports association, his humble background where he’s expected to be grateful and happy to land a gig as a manual worker in the railways through the sports quota, and an incident that leaves him injured.
Predictably, Aaditya picks up the badminton racquet at school with his mother, Jaya (Shirswara Dubey), and his father’s childhood friend Viju’s (Sumit Arora) support. Whether the reluctant father will relent to let the son follow his talent and dream and help him achieve it forms the rest of the story. Sudhanshu Sharma’s taut screenplay and directorial command ensure that the serious story remains engaging.
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As far as performances are concerned, Kay Kay Menon proves that without a doubt, he is a champion in the acting department and his portrayal of the austere father and diligent husband as well as a disillusioned dad is as on-point as his transformation. Ark Jain is excellent as the son in the scenes when he briefly succumbs to his newfound stardom and goes against his father’s advice for the first time.
While the ace Bangla actor Swastika Mukherjee plays Siddharth’s ex-girlfriend and a catalyst in Aaditya’s journey as a player, Shriswara, as the obedient wife and loving mother, and Viju, a loyal but straight-talking friend, live up to the expectations and perform extremely well.
To sum up, all said and done, Love All is a simple, powerful and heartfelt sports drama, where badminton shines as the pivotal subject and is compellingly charming to the core. It has an ensemble cast that includes about 200 national-international badminton players. Don’t miss it!