Paan Singh Tomar is a movie dedicated to those great athletes of India who are forgotten very easily. These athletes who have done great in sports and made many Indians proud because of their talent, discipline and dedication, don't get enough to meet their survival needs and often die penniless. This is indeed not most unfortunate of human disasters in India, but yet tragic and demotivates many budding athletes.
Paan Singh Tomar is the name of the protagonist in movie. He is an exceptional runner and fate moves him to become a record-setting-breaking athlete in Steeplechase. But irony of fate forces him to become a rebel-with-gun.
This movie is based on the true story of a national hero who later on becomes a much feared despicable name with a bounty on it. In spite of his serving the national army, his great performances in athletics, what he gets from corrupt politicians and jealous cousins is--chaotic alienation, brutal deception and disrespect; which make him change his ways and makes him revengeful.
Irfan Khan has performed well in my opinion and other characters look natural. There are some good scenes, very finely done, thanks to Tigmanshu Dhulia. The language used in movie is Bundelkhandi-a dialect spoken in the region of Bundelkhand. The region where Pan Singh Tomar was born and brought up is very infamous for dacoits (they like to call themselves rebels). They use violence and ransoms to earn money and one of the reasons why region known as ‘Chambal-Region’ is so dangerous is emphasized in this movie. I did not fail to notice that Irfan Khan uses 'proper Hindi', when speaking to his young kids in a scene before intermission, but he consistently speaks in Bundeli language to his wife and to his gang members.
Movie seems to create a humorous effect on audience because of use of Bundeli in certain scenes but it ends on a serious note with a question in your mind: Why are athletes treated so badly in India?