Rashmi Rocket on Zee5 is the first story to take up gender testing in sports but falls in mid between trying to be a social commentary and a Bollywood cliche.

Gender Testing is an archaic test running from the 1950s that is designed to tell the difference between a male and female by checking up on the level of testosterone in the bloodstream. In sports this test allows the athletes to have an equal level playing field with each other. Rashmi Rocket currently streaming on zee5 raises the issue of gender testing being used to ban female athletes who have higher testosterone levels irrespective of scientific evidence that it doesn’t affect the performance of the athlete. While the film’s intent is good and noble yet it falls short of telling a good social commentary story rather falls in the trap of a cliche Bollywood sports cum courtroom drama.

Written by Nanda Periyasamy, Aniruddha Guha, and Kanika Dhillon the story of the film seems to be inspired by local female athletes Santhi Soundarajan and Dutee Chand. The former lost her life attempting suicide after the ban because of the test in spite of being the first Dalit Tamil woman to win an Asian Games medal. While the latter chose to fight the ban made on her for the 2014 Commonwealth Games and make a comeback in the 2016 Rio Olympics. But only inspiration and intent don’t make a film it is also artistic and creative input that seems to be missing from the film. Filmmaker Akarsh Khurana and the writers seem to be confused at what they really want to say and what approach should they take to say it.

Rashmi (Taapsee Pannu) hails from Bhuj, Gujarat but other than some typical style of dressing and accessories the place really has no weightage except the accent jumping in here and there. Her father’s sudden demise in Bhuj’s earthquake has stopped her from becoming a nation’s rocket but that soon changes after an army officer (Priyanshu Painyuli) and her mother (Supriya Pathak) convince her to do otherwise. From the start, Rashmi has always been shown as a bike riding, pants-jacket wearing bold and badass girl who slaps a guy for beating his wife and runs like a rocket. Heart of her father and has a quite unique relationship with her mother. We see her struggling a bit in the national training camp but she quickly overcomes that and becomes the rocket of the nation. But then this whole gender testing turns her world upside down and makes her fall down into depression from which she finally rises back up and takes up a fight with her overtly enthusiastic yet nervous lawyer Eeshit (Abhishek Banerjee).

The result of this whole plot is that the film takes a journey from a sports drama into a courtroom drama and both dramas are highly Bollywood cliches at best. You can’t really seem to emotionally connect with the story and go on a journey with Rashmi irrespective of the stunning cast (including shweta tripathi’s cameo) that gives their best at what is being offered to them. The film gets all chaotic with much larger themes it takes upon itself by showcasing an underdog facing a class indifference, a sportswoman struggles of being a wife and mother, the choice of wearing clothes, testosterone levels, her physical body, and her fight as a woman for justice. It’s not that this all can’t be taken up together in a film it’s just that this film doesn’t do justice to the number of themes it has taken upon itself. And it probably would have been far better for them if they would have just stuck with just gender testing which is a completely untouched and an unknown subject. Though the film has its moments here and there just like its Gujarati accent but otherwise irrespective of having intent this film fails at its artistic level.

But that’s enough from us, let’s look at what the janta is saying about Little Rashmi Rocket that’s currently streaming on Zee5!

Rashmi Rocket, this sports cum courtroom drama on gender testing is currently streaming on Zee5 and just for their intent and cast could be watched. And if you have already watched it don’t forget to tell your thoughts in the comments below!

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