Bollywood 2017 will be remembered as the year it matured from candy-floss chick-flicks to ‘slice-of-life’ comic scripts. Tumhari Sulu belongs to the same (refreshing) genre as Hindi Medium, Bareilly Ki Barfi, Shubh Mangal Saavdhan & Qarib Qarib Singlle. Each of them trying to break societal voodoos in their own way. And the biggest voodoo that exists in humanity, is in underestimating the role of a housewife.
Home Maker must get official designation status
How progressive a country is can easily be judged by the way its society treats the housewife. The intensity of patriarchy too. Naturally ‘developing nations’, despite the #MainKarSaktiHai lady in every other house, will score low in this. Even first world nations, aside upgrading the title from housewife to home-maker, haven’t been able to convert anything to more concrete and official. Personally I feel home maker should be given official designation status and her load judged with any ‘manager’ designation. That’s the best way society would start evaluating who works more.
Tumhari Sulu is a true tribute to the housewife, made more so believable by the Irrfan Khan of Bollywood women – Vidya Balan. While Kangana Ranaut markets hard on how she is a powerful performer, Vidya’s kahaani (story) is similar to Tabu & Rani Mukherjee – all action, no talk, no Dirty Picture! Her Sullu is flashback of her RJ Janhavi, eleven years ago, in the epic Lage Raho Munnabhai. The eternal ‘Good Moooorrrnnnning Mumbaai’ only replaced by a seductive post goodnight ‘Huloooo’.
Sulu is the heart and soul of this movie – even the way she mimics the pigeon will give you smiles. Ditto Manav Kaul – honestly I went to watch this movie more for him – as the ever supportive husband. Watch Manav cheer Sulu while struggling to keep her handbag hung proper. Their middle class lives are so so relatable – sex-less life, AC off in car, slave at workplace, chatting after lights off, never letting go the pressure cooker gift of her hands and making pooris on a celebration day. You come out of Tumhari Sulu hoping you have a husband like Manav’s character Ashok, a boss like Neha Dhupia’s (lights up the screen every time) Maria and colleague like Vijay Maurya. The performances of the cast and support cast are superlative.
One week after watching Qarib Qarib Singlle, I only recall Irrfan from the cast but Tumhari Sulu has superior strength and depth in side actors. However Suresh Triveni loses script, direction, edit and finesse towards the last third. Needless melodrama slows the movie as the comic aspect gets lost. How I wish the school and office problems were traded with family & societal issues. After all, the movie is honest about two issues – that parents do exercise favouritism when it comes to growing children and for an ideal couple to survive the clarity should always be ‘Tum meri team me ho ya un logon ki?’ A mention about the music – tributes to Hawa Hawaii & Koyel si teri boli are good nostalgia.
Rating: 3/5 (Averaged with Meri Trisha, my better half, the housewife)
Tumhari Sulu is a sure one time watch and to be proud of the housewife in your house. We were drenched but keen to watch Vidya & Manav. Singapore suburbian theatre 4pm show had 90% packed crowd giggling and enjoying, specially the first half!