5 reasons you should hit theaters to watch 'Badhaai Do'
As India continues to witness a decline in COVID-19 cases amid the third wave, filmmakers are gradually opting to release their movies on big screens again. And, Bollywood has resumed theatrical releases with Harshavardhan Kulkarni's Badhaai Do—starring Rajkummar Rao and Bhumi Pednekar—on Friday. Dealing with the topic of homosexuality, this venture is fit for a family day out. Here, we list the reasons why.
Releasing in the month of love, Badhaai Do reminds us "love is love" but some kinds are still "frightening to realize" in society. We see gay police officer Shardul (Rao) and lesbian PT instructor Suman (Pednekar) tying the knot—in what's called a lavender marriage—to avoid the familial pressure to marry and settle. Whether they continue to fool their families makes up an exciting plotline.
What uplifts the story and its relevance in a society that still needs awareness about homosexuality are the cast's acting performances. There's no Bollywood actor who can ace the overly coy act better than Rao. Even his douchebag moves are endearing. Pednekar is charming and earnest with her depiction, too. Sheeba Chadha, playing Rao's mother, is a gem. You'll love her in every scene.
Bollywood is used to packing socially-relevant movies with humor (for example, Shubh Mangal Zyada Saavdhan). The same is the case here. However, Badhaai Do excels only when it gets serious in its tone. Cracking gay jokes and laughing at the awkwardness of elders isn't enough. And, thankfully, Kulkarni and his writers depict the fear of getting "outed" and the disgust associated with homosexuality here.
This spiritual sequel to Badhaai Ho doesn't miss out on giving us well-rounded secondary/tertiary characters. Like, a "good father" laments why his child is gay and the film also shows a random fling isn't all sunshine-and-rainbows. Most importantly, it gives us multiple kinds of homosexual people—not limiting them to the two or three needed for the plot—establishing them to be equally prevalent as heterosexuals.
Chum Darang in her debut role as Sumi's partner, Rimjhim, deserves a special mention here. She holds her own while sharing the screen with acting powerhouses—Rao and Pednekar. Lastly, watch the film in theaters, even if it is to relish Gulshan Devaiah's beautiful, beautiful entry. In fact, he's a darling in every second of his cameo. Badhaai Do isn't perfect but deserves one chance.