Bollywood superstar Akshay Kumar was present at the last winter Olympics in Vancouver. Canada’s love for…or should I say “obsession” with hockey must have surely inspired him as he produced a very Canadian film about this sport but within the Indian (Punjabi) culture, with a touch of Bollywood flair….and voila, the movie “Breakaway.”
Raj (Vinay Virmani) works for his Uncle Sammy (Gurpreet Singh Ghuggi) at his trucking company. While Raj’s Dad, Darvesh Singh (Anupam Kher) lives with the hope that Raj will eventually be the head of the business. Raj has no interest whatsoever in the business and dreams of becoming a professional hockey player. While playing around on the ice with his buddies, he catches the eye of Coach Dan Winters (Rob Lowe) who used to play in the NHL. Raj sets his sights on the coach’s sister Melissa (Camilla Belle).
While all these people are getting to know each other and Coach Dan forms a team, Canada’s very own comedian Russell Peters enters the picture, playing the role of Sonu, the obnoxious fiancée of Raj’s cousin Reena (Noureen DeWulf). While Sonu hopes to take over the family’s trucking business, he tries to make sure Raj is no longer being considered and creates some mischief with the hopes of getting what he wants. Meanwhile, Raj lies to his family and agrees to quit hockey at his father’s request, but in fact is hoping to lead his team “The Speedy Singhs” to victory.
By no means is “Breakway” anything particularly novel. It follows a very generic type of formula as far as the “underdog” story and the family is discouraging. You see the ups and downs life can bring when trying to pursue a cherished dream. If you’ve seen “Bend It Like Beckham,” you will see the similarities…and the same Bollywood actor, Anupam Kher, playing a very similar role as the disapproving Dad. But this veteran actor is a pro and gave a really good performance here. Russell Peters is known for his comedy but his potential was not fully utilized as he wasn’t as funny as he can be in his shows. But what was unique was hockey amidst a Punjabi community. The two leads ice skating in front of the backdrop of the Taj Mahal in a Bollywood style dance number…very funny. Overall, an entertaining movie. Check it out.