I wished to love Ek Ladki Ko Dekha To Aisa Laga, I actually did. But when, like me, you’re on the lookout for a robust same-sex love story, this isn’t that movie as considerate as it’s.
Sonam Kapoor Ahuja performs Sweety, a mild-mannered queer lady from a small city in Punjab, who’s beloved immensely by her well-to-do father Balbir Chaudhry (Anil Kapoor) who aspires to be a chef however finally ends up working a profitable garment enterprise, an over-protective older brother and a highly-conservative grandmother.
Whereas trying to sneak away from residence to satisfy her lover in Delhi, Sweety hides in a theatre the place struggling playwright Sahil Mirza’s (Rajkummar Rao) new play is being rehearsed. Mirza finds himself deeply drawn to Sweety and decides to maneuver to her city to be able to woo her. When he finds out that Sweety is queer, he decides to assist her come out to her household.
It’s clear, then, that the movie is produced from the angle of straight individuals and seeks to create empathy in them to respect and tolerate individuals who love in a different way. On that rely, it does fairly nicely. As a straight individual myself who used to wrestle with the concept that same-sex attraction is pure, the movie spoke to a earlier model of myself and jogged my memory of so many conversations I’d been part of after I was nonetheless a light homophobe.
That is each a power and a weak point of the movie. It’s a power as a result of Indian (and South Asian) society just isn’t but at some extent the place a relationship like this – or perhaps a movie like this – may be handled as a given. So, it is smart to make a film that’s digestible as a result of it comes with loads of teachable moments and wholesome doses of melodrama. It does a great job on these moments too, with out turning into overly preachy.
It’s a weak point as a result of, alas, it does find yourself being preachy to the purpose that sadly the straight characters find yourself taking the highlight as saviours of the homosexual characters. The movie additionally has a curious give attention to small cities, as if homophobia isn’t an city phenomenon and people dwelling in cities don’t have to be taught tolerance.
Sadly, the straight characters of Ek Ladki Ko Dekha find yourself taking the highlight as saviours of the homosexual characters. The movie additionally has a curious give attention to small cities, as if homophobia isn’t an city phenomenon and people dwelling in cities don’t have to be taught tolerance.
That the movie is sanctimonious in locations is hardly a shock, on condition that the film is produced by Vidhu Vinod Chopra and Raju Hirani – who’ve collaborated on many so-called message-oriented movies just like the Munnabhai MBBS sequence, three Idiots, and PK. (Hirani has been accused of sexual harassment and his title was eliminated as a producer from the film. It’s unclear if any of the earnings from the movie will go to him).
Ahuja’s efficiency left quite a bit to be desired and Regina Cassandra who performs Sweety’s associate Kuhu had little or no house to create an impression. The 2 girls couldn’t create any actual chemistry, leading to an virtually childish relationship with the couple showing extra like pals than lovers. To be truthful, the movie was working inside comprehensible constraints so the characters might solely present attraction by means of holding fingers however that doesn’t clarify why the couple by no means has an actual dialog that gives the viewers a glimpse into why they fell in love with one another within the first place.
In reality, the scene the place they first meet and are drawn to one another could be very superficial, with one dialog the place Kuhu tells Sweety that she used to have crushes on ladies as a baby. It’s actually unlucky movie attempting to shatter norms falls into the last word Bollywood stereotype: A meets B, they speak about love for 30 seconds, and voila intense love has occurred.
Those that actually shine are Kapoor as a doting father and an obedient son, and Juhi Chawla as a divorced girl with progressive concepts and a refreshingly relentless drive to develop into an actor now that her youngsters have grown up and she or he’s free from a wedding she hadn’t wished. It’s a pity that the script doesn’t give Rao, a superb actor, a lot of a chance to show his expertise.
An sudden factor that I beloved in regards to the movie was its portrayal of Muslims, an space the place Bollywood continues to wrestle. Mirza doesn’t behave or communicate like he’s caught within the 1940s – there are not any adabs, his Urdu isn’t impeccable, and the phrase janab isn’t used – and there’s no tokenism, in that his faith is barely vital insofar as his faith must be.
So is the movie price watching? Completely! If for no different motive than to assist the primary mainstream Bollywood film ever to point out a same-sex romance as a reality of life. Take a pal, higher but take your dad and mom or aunts and uncles. They’re extra the audience than youthful of us.
Right here’s hoping that stepping on to the stone laid down by Ek Ladki Ko Dekha To Aisa Laga, extra filmmakers will make films with same-sex characters and that considered one of them will develop into a romance for the ages.