Surekha Sikri’s skills haven’t been used a lot in films. Yes, her body of work in Television is astounding (The earliest I remember her is from Banegi Apni Baat), but it is sad that Hindi Cinema didn’t exploit her talent enough in her 40-year odd career! Well, at least now we have Badhaai Ho… She is the head of the family here and she leads the way with élan.
If you have seen the trailers you know that this is a film about a middle-aged couple who get pregnant. And it brings with it ignominy and oodles of laughter. They suddenly become the ‘Mock of the Town’ and their young boys start hiding from their extended family and friends to hide their shame! Ofcourse, after a bag full of laughs and tears, all ends well and you walk out of the theater beaming.
Is this a perfect film? No. But does it get a whole lot of things right? Yes. And it’s majorly because of the insightful writing. The characters are well thought out and the dialogues are brilliant. The director gets the right people to deliver them and their delivery is pitch perfect. Surekha Sikri is ably supported by fellow TV veteran, Neena Gupta and the delightful Gajraj Rao. Be it the awkwardness of telling his sons about the unwanted pregnancy or the quite pride of still having his manhood intact at such an advanced age, Gajraj Rao is an absolute hoot. And a special mention needs to be made for the sound design of the scenes. The background music is just spectacular and elevates every scene by leaps and bounds. Just watch the scene where Gajraj first finds out that his wife is pregnant, and I promise you the background score lifts that scene so brilliantly that you will have labour pains from all that laughter!
Ayushmann and Sanya play second fiddle to the veterans and they don’t let the veterans down. But it’s the forced strain in their relationship that lets the film down a bit. It is highly unnecessary and I guess it is merely added to increase the length of the film. The film does get a little too soppy in its 3rd and final act, but then Sikri is always there to brighten up the proceedings. Also, the songs are 3rd rate, so that’s a negative. But these are but minor flaws in the entire scheme of things and nothing can help you from having a good time at the theater.
So what are you waiting for? It’s time to get in bed with this film and have a good time! Age no bar, because it leaves everyone equally pregnant with happiness… Go on, check it out at your nearest cinema and watch the veterans rise!
Rating: 3.5/5 – Keep it up Ayushmann. Pick the right scripts and let the veterans shine. And yeah, well done Amit Sharma (director) this is a marked improvement from the disastrous Tevar. You sir have redeemed yourself, now keep it going.