DVD review: Chak De India - Collector's box of goodies


By IndiaFM

It's time to celebrate. DVD of Bollywood's most successful film of the year so far, Chak De India, has arrived. No wonder, just like the film and the impact it has made amongst cine goers this year, the DVD is big too. Reason being that apart from the film in itself, as a viewer one gets to open a box off goodies which come with ton loads of special features. Read on to know more about them:


While the film's duration is 152 minutes, features in the second DVD also add up to another 135 minutes approximately

Cast: Shah Rukh Khan & the on-screen hockey team
Director: Shimit Amin
Writer: Jaideep Sahni
Music: Salim-Sulaiman
Director of Photography: Sudeep Chatterjee


Released worldwide on 10th August, 2007 with minimal hype and publicity, Chak De India opened to surprisingly low collections for a Shah Rukh starrer. With Yash Raj Films backing the project, it was nothing short of shocking. However by the time it was Friday evening, the word of mouth caught like wild fire and collections jumped drastically. A film which many expected to do well only at multiplexes turned out to be a bumper box office scorer across all nooks and corners of the country.

A film with a sports based theme, it touched the chord across all age groups in different strata of society spread across the country. The theme song Chak De India crooned by Sukhwinder Singh has become an anthem and is played across the world wherever India is playing on the field, whether it is cricket, hockey, football or tennis. Also, it is also a favorite amongst news channels!


Now this is where the fun begins. Even though many have already seen the film on the big screen multiple times and would love to repeat the same in their comfort of home too, the SPECIAL FEATURES DVD is what multiples the fun quotient.

The DVD comes with number of added features such as

- Exclusive Deleted Scenes
- The Making Of The Film
- Chak De Hockey - CNN - IBN
- Cult of Chak De - NDTV 24X7
- SRK - A Presidential Experience - CNN - IBN
- Somerset House - UK Premiere
- Music Videos: a) Kuch Kariye b) Ek Hockey Doongi Rakhke
- Making Of Hockey Doongi Rakhke
- Theatrical Trailor & Promos
- Photo Gallery - a) Posters b) Working Stills c) Player Profiles

Of course, what takes the cake is 35 minutes of DELETED SCENES which more than compensate the price of the DVD. Instead of some random shots of one off irrelevant scenes left out on the editing table, the section here has more elaborate sequences. In fact most of the 22 scenes (yes, you read it right - 22 scenes) make you wonder if they may would as well have been brought to the big screen as a part of the narrative.

The biggest beneficiary out of most of these 22 scenes is the girl who played Gul Iqbal. While the theatrical version of the film had it's focus on the likes of Preeti Sabharwals and Bindia Naiks and Komal Chautalas and Vidya Sharmas and Balbir Kaurs of the team, it was Gul Iqbal who merely had a fleeting appearance. Well, it was her role which was left out on the editing table but now has been compensated for in the DVD viewing. Watch out for the sequences where she transforms from a girl burdened by her lineage to someone who rises up the occasion and lives up to her own identity.

Deleted scenes also give a viewer a chance to know more about what happened when:

- Kabir Khan (Shah Rukh Khan) returned to the camp; now as a coach
- The three senior players didn't turn up at the camp for the first morning and the practice was halted followed by the punishment
- The girls were assessed for their strengths and weaknesses
- Girls got into conversations with different partners in the rooms
- Shah Rukh got into an uncomfortable 'bhangra' with the girls after their win over men in a hockey match
- Shah Rukh cam face to face with Vidya's husband
- Girls played antakshri during their visit to Australia
- Balbir Kaur tried teaching English to the girls from Jharkhand
- Indian and Pakistani fans brought home made food for the hockey team
- India won it's semi-final match v/s Germany (a superb not to be missed sequence!!)

MAKING OF THE FILM is different from numerous behind the scenes happenings which is showcased for number of films. Here it lasts for just 22 minutes but in this short duration it has Jaideep Sahni, Shimit Amin and Shah Rukh Khan talking about what prompted them to make the film, how screen tests were done for choosing the right girls for the right roles, how was the entire look designed, what transpired during joint script reading sessions, the real time practice for girls to fit into the character of a hockey player, Dhanraj Pillai's visit and a lot more!

Another interesting addition to the DVD is a 32 minutes open house debate CHAK DE HOCKEY on CNN-IBN which was aired after the film's release. The episode not just features most of the cast and crew of the film but also special guests like Dhanraj Pillay and Diana Eduljee along with real life members of Indian hockey team. What works for the episode is it's topical nature because it clearly narrates Dhanraj Pillay's doubts around the film really having made an impression big enough apart from it's cinematic entertainment. He argues that once the film's euphoria would settle down after a few months, it would be back to cricket for most. Though many seem to disagree with him in the episode, it seems so very true today!

Later comes a 16 minutes episode of CULT OF CHAK DE on NDTV 24X7 where three principal characters from the film are brought on face to face with the real hockey players. As the six women share their on screen and off screen experience, it is difficult to ascertain who inspired whom?

Towards the end of the DVD it is Shah Rukh Khan all the way as he shares experiences about his meeting with the President of India Mrs. Pratibha Patil for whom a special screening of the film was arranged for. Titled SRK - A PRESIDENTIAL EXPERIENCE - CNN - IBN, it has Shah Rukh Khan at his verbose, exciting and overwhelmed best. Yet another evidence of his super stardom is visible when the DVD takes a viewer through the UK PREMIER at SOMERSET HOUSE.

For those looking for more behind the screens happening, there is an interesting looking MAKING OF HOCKEY DOONGI RAKHKE which not just shows what happened in front of the camera but also what happened in the recording room when each of the girls sung their own lines. Also the music videos of the song 'Ek Hockey Doongi Rakhke' as well as the cult track 'Kuch Kariye' are shown in their full versions.

In the end, what one misses though is the Director's Commentary. If only that was included too, the DVD 'Chak De India' would have scored a perfect 10!


16:9 Anamorphic Widescreen Presentation (2.35:1 Aspect Ratio)
Optional Subtitles In 7 Languages- International: English / Arabic / Spanish / Dutch / Portuguese, Indian: Tamil / Malayalam
5.1 Dolby Digital Sound, Optional Stereo Sound
Digitally Re-mastered From The Original Film


Today, Chak De India stands as the most successful film of year 2007 with a 100 day run behind it. Even the worst detractors of Shah Rukh Khan have acknowledged that he has stepped ahead of super stardom with Chak De India and finally come up with a worthy act that combines art with blockbuster success. It is also one of those rare films where apart from the actor, producer and the director, a writer has been widely acknowledged for his work too by being a household name today. Jaideep Sahni would agree!

Chak De India - A film which deserves a place in a collector's "Classic Collections". Don't miss it!