Cast: VidyaBalan and ManavKaul (Main leads)
Neha Dhupia, Vijay Maurya, MalishkaMendonsa (Supporting Actors)
Director: Suresh Triveni
A middle-class family, a rather supportive husband, a bullied school kid and an underestimated wife waiting to find her calling – that would be Tumhari Sulu in a line for you. The family resides in the suburbs of Mumbai and Sulochana (Balan) finds her happiness in the smallest of things; winning a mothers’ race on her son’s sports day, a pressure cooker in a lucky draw or even musical chair in her society compound. Clad in cotton saree, Sulu alone is the driving force of the film – not that the movie lags overall but only for those instances of dip.
Vidya Balan’s laughter evidently travels from deep within her stomach and lights her face up with optimism, coupled with ‘Mai Kar Sakti Hu’ is what eventually finds her a job as a late night RJ. The manager, Neha Dhupia, is shown to be pretty adamant initially due to her appearance and no past experiences but is convinced by her determination and a rather sensual voice. Manav Kaul as Sulu’s husband sets some husband goals to talk about. While stuck in his job of everyday dead end slavery, he fights all obstructions to plant wings on his wife’s back – except for, of course, a few ground shaking moments here and there.
The first half of the movie runs pretty well with Balan, Kaul and Neha Dhupia; however, the second half seems a little rushed to talk of. You know how sometimes you watch a movie and you feel involved but suddenly it all starts falling apart? The son is shown to have been suffering at school and so the existential conflict there takes place in the family. The movie could have done great rounds by penetrating deep into and addressing the important issues that we are dominated and consumed in like that of patriarchy, male ego, and chauvinism. But, it is because of the shallowness that Tumhari Sulu somehow, somewhere fails to strike a chord where it would have fit so well. Or even otherwise, the triumph of the woman could have just sufficed enough – the absence of a fabricated conflict could have been just fine.
Overall so as to say, though, it was a delightful watch. The director did a great job by making it very relatable; there are scenes you’d feel you’ve experienced and lived in your own life. Everybody was fabulous with their parts especially Manav Kaul who went from shades of supporting and encouraging to that of an existential crisis and fix in a decent and natural manner. But obviously so, Vidya Balan shone over everyone else and the movie, truly, belongs to her wits and charm.
We’d go for a 3.5 on 5.
(The extra 0.5 only for Sulu’s saris, haha)