800 Movie Review


2 Hr 29 Mins   |   Sports   |   06-10-2023

Cast - Madhur Mittal, Nasser, Mahima Nambiar, Narain, and others

Director - MS Sripathy

Producer - Sivalenka Krishna Prasad

Banner - Sridevi Movies

Music - Ghibran

Biographical sports film is a genre which is not made often. When it is attempted, it has an advantage owing to the special set of audience who is interested in the sports. Based on the life of Muttiah Muralitharan, 800 (film) is named after Mutthiah’s highest number of test wickets 800. Earlier, Kabir Khan’s 83 (film) was based on India’s historic world cup victory in 1983. Will 800 (film) make such an impact? Here is the review.

What is it about?

A Tamil origin Muttiah Muralitharan (Madhur Mittal) struggles to get a place in Sri Lanka’s International Cricket team. After getting into the team and succeeding with his off-spin, Murali faces allegations of chucking by Australian umpires. His ‘controversial’ bowling briefly derails his cricket career. Murali with Tamil origin is under pressure to prove his commitment for the Sri Lanka team and fans. How Murali faces all the odds and emerges as the highest-wicket taker in world’s test career forms the crux of the story.


Madhur Mittal gets under the skin of Muttiah’s role and breathes life into the character. He shines in the emotional scenes adding a lot of gravity. The sports scenes have an edge. Mahima Nambiar gets a small role which has no major significance. Nasser as a senior sports journalist from Kandi (Muttaih’s native town in Lanka) does a fine job. His role has a personal loss as well. He narrates Muttiah’s story, bringing some curiosity.


Writing of 800 has layers – Murali’s struggle both personally and career-wise. It touches down the emotional side of sportsperson. But political angle and drama didn’t really gel with the story. Director Sripathy failed to deliver high moments and elevate Murali’s winning moments. Technically, the film scores. Ghibran’s background score is an asset. The screenplay is non-linear, but couldn’t make an impact it deserved.


Muttiah’s Story & Struggle
Recreation Of Era & Cricket Episodes

Lack of High Moments
Eelam Conflict
Slow Narration


Unlike the lives and stories of other international cricketers, Muttiah Muralitharan’s story has a lot of struggle, pain, continuous tests to prove himself and yet despite all this he manages to be the world’s highest-wicket taker in test cricket. Muttiah Muralitharan achieved so much with a lot of grit and confidence fighting all odds. On top of it, his Indian origin is often a major challenge for him to prove his loyalty towards the Sri Lanka cricket team. All these makes him one of the most inspiring cricketers and his story deserves to be made on screen. Director Sripathy picked the story of Muttaih and called it 800 (film) which made a lot of sense. The film begins with Muttaih playing his final test cricket series which has just 3 days left. How does he achieve the world record of 800 wickets in test cricket?

Muttiah’s story is narrated by a sports journalist played by Nasser who also hails from Kandi, Muttaih’s native town. So he has a closer look and observation into Murali’s life and struggle. Right from his childhood days amidst riots between Sinhala and Tamil to his missionary school to college days and his tryst with cricket is shown. Muttiah gets the Sri Lanka cricket team at the tender age of 19. It is his break into the cricket which gets a lot of prominence. This could be better. The emotional connect here gets missing. An underdog from oppressed (Tamil) gets into international Sri Lanka team. But it is told in very boring manner. Slow-paced narration adds to the woes.

Director Sripathy recreates the era of 1980s and 1990s so well and the cricket episodes are shot well. England and Australian matches take the centerstage. There is an X factor that is missing in the film. Even the dubbing isn’t impressive. The first half of the film entirely depends on Muttiah’s initial days and his background. Director shows Murali’s family, his bond with his father, mother and grandmother and their biscuit factory. But all these put the audiences off. Murali’s game is what audiences ought to see. The world-cup episode (1996) is a life-changing event for Sri Lanka cricket team. This should be highlighted, but it goes as one of the incidents. The meeting of Muttiah with Eelam chief didn’t make an impact. The film has only few aspects that are appealing. Barring this, it failed to engage like other biographical sports drama.

The Australian umpires call Murali’s bowling as controversial and declare as “No Ball”. This film from Sripathy is a No Ball as the ball/writing didn’t spin well. Thus it is a wasted opportunity. The makers didn’t succeed in telling an inspiring story of one of the great cricketers. However, one could give this a try on OTT just for Muttiah Muralitharan.

Verdict: It’s No Ball!

Rating: 2.25/5