Jersey movie review: Shahid Kapoor outshines Nani in this feel-good, faithful remake

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Movie: Jersey
Jersey Cast: Shahid Kapoor, Mrunal Thakur, Pankaj Kapur, Ronit Kamra, Geetika Mehandru, Rituraj Singh
Jersey Director: Gowtam Tinnanuri
Where to Watch: In Theatres
Review by: Russel D’Silva
There’s two way of going ahead with a remake being extremely faithful to the original or retaining its essence while forging your own trajectory. Simmba is a fine example of the latter while Drishyam is a good example of the former. Of course, a viewer who watches both versions would prefer a variation, but in the hands of a not-so-skilled Director, it could go downhill very fast and irk fans of the original no end, which is why a faithful adaptation, often amounting to a frame-by-frame one, is the easier albeit safer path. And when you have the same Director as was the case in an earlier Shahid Kapoor movie, Kabir Singh, and again with Gowtam Tinnanuri in Jersey, the expectation for an alternate version is all but futile. That being said, the original Jersey starring Nani was a solid sports film and human drama, and it’s no different with the remake.
So, are you excited about what to watch this weekend or what to watch this week and wondering whether Jersey is worth your time? Scroll down for my full Jersey movie review…
What’s it about
Arjun Talwar (Shahid Kapoor), regarded by some as the best batsman of his time in the domestic cricket circut, is down and out in his personal and professional life after biding adieu to the sport after marrying Vidya (Mrunal Thakur) and having a son. However, fate throws him a second chance.
What’s hot
It’s rare that an actor outdoes the original performance, especially in a remake that stays so true to the original, which makes both Shahid Kapoor and Pankaj Kapur’s work all the more praiseworthy. Mrunal Thakur and the rest of the cast also do a fine job. The Bollywood Jersey again scores over its Telugu predecessor in terms of the songs and background music, and placement of a handful of scenes that while the same, have been reshuffled for better effect. Gowtam Tinnanuri again does a very good job as Director as Siddharth Garima in the way they’ve translated the dialogues. The production values also seem more slick as does Anil Mehta’s camerawork. The final match, Shahid’s first return to active cricket and the revelation during the denouement once again serve as high points, particularly for those who’ve not seen the Tollywood movie.
What’s not
By changing nothing, Gowtam Tinnanuri repeats some of the mistakes from the original, like the annoying way in which the character of Shahid and Mrunal’s son is written. Likewise, for a sports film, the remake again lacks a bit of gut-wrenching emotional moments and euphoric highs, which are imperative in an underdog story, more so when several plot points become fairly predictable. The finale does serve up as those emotions and the final match does have pack some of that rush, but it’s a tad too little.
BL Verdict
Shahid Kapoor and Mrunal Thakur starrer Jersey is a fairly solid sports film, underdog take, and family drama all rolled into one, without ever being remarkable, which is expected as it was the same with its carbon-copy original. It should serve more rewards though for those who haven’t seen the Nani film. I’m going with 3.5 out of 5 stars.
Rating : 3.5 out of 5