Director: Sonal Joshi
Starcast: Shilpa Shetty Kundra, Kusha Kapila, Dilnaz Irani, Pavleen Gujral, Chaitannya Choudhry, Nitanshi Goel, and Amit Sadh
Duration: 2 hours 21 minutes
Ever since I saw the trailer of Shilpa Shetty’s Sukhee, it gave me quite the English Vinglish vibe. Sadly, the film is not even close to what the Sridevi starrer was. Having said that as Sonal Joshi’s first film, Sukhee is not bad either. It is a slice-of-life film, but a bland one. The acting and performances are good, but the storyline is something where the essence is lacking. The emotional content in the film seems superficial while the story seems dragged in places. In fact, it looks like Sonal is trying to convey too many messages in one story, set in the backdrop of a typical Indian marriage.
Sukhee highlights the plight of a homemaker who seems to have forgotten her self-worth in being a doting mother and a hands-on wife. And while she tries to get in touch with her lost older version, as a viewer, both versions of Shilpa Shetty as Sukhee seem very disconnected. Yes, there is very subtle relatability in the wild and docile version of Shilpa’s character. As for the friends, Kusha, Dilnaz, and Pavleen, their character arcs look very half-baked, while Amit Sadh’s role makes no sense. It just doesn’t fit in. As for Chaitannya, his performance is an overpowering one, and even Nitanshi who plays Sukhee’s daughter is quite good as she tries to stir our emotions.
Story of Sukhee
Sukhee aka Sukhpreet Gill is the story of a full-of-life girl from Delhi. She hails from an affluent army family and is blessed with a strong will and stunning looks. As usual, she is a dream girl in school and college, a wild child who lives life with a glass full approach. While Sukhpreet is living her life to the fullest, she falls in love with Guru Kalra (Chaitannya), and due to a family crisis, Guru has to move back to his small town of Anandkot. Leaving all her life behind Sukhee decides to marry Guru, and in the bargain loses her parents.
Cut to the present day, Sukhee is a regular housewife and mother who has suppressed all her dreams and ambitions. She is at the mercy of a husband who has forgotten the romance they once had. Guru is busy minting money and pleasing those who can help him to reach that dream, he is a typical husband telling his wife, ‘saara din tum ghar par karti hi kya ho’. One fine day, Sukhee receives an invitation for her school reunion and she decides to go despite objections from Guru and her daughter Jassi.
The story further shows Sukhee living her life for herself, getting in touch with the side of her that she had probably buried. She lives many happy moments but also faces the dilemma of going back to the regular drill. Finally, she does, but all of involves lots of dragged events and moments, and even people whose absence could have made the storyline crisper.
Highlights of Sukhee
1. Shilpa Shetty in the titular role
For me, Shilpa’s performance has mixed feedback. While my heart reached out to her in the first half and I felt bad for the character, in the second half it looked like Sukhee was overdoing it. But yes, at playing a great mother, Shilpa does get you emotional, she inspires you in a great way. She will surely make you leave your seat feeling empowered. In fact, Shilpa’s performance will influence you in a way to live a little for yourself too, to not be treated as a doormat, also to get your individuality respected. Shilpa’s simple stance is charming, but her enthusiastic stance as the young Sukhee fails to connect.
2. Kusha Kapila as Meher, Chaitannya as Guru, and Nitanshi as Jassi
In the extended star cast, Kusha adds some great humor to Sukhee’s rather dull life. Her character and one-liners are very good. In fact, Meher aka Kusha is the glue that binds the girl gang together. Even though Chaitannya plays the toxic and typical Indian husband who doesn’t value the worth of his wife, his performance is quite endearing. He makes you feel the emotions he is going through, and you even sympathize with his point at places. Nitanshi as Jassi is the star in the film and is very good. In fact, you feel so bad for her that she will make you teary-eyed.
Drawbacks of Sukhee
1. Execution of the story
A flaw with Sukhee is that its first half is quite strong, but the second half makes no sense. The characters and their plots seem futile. In fact, Sukhee’s plight comes across as a sob story at some points, the issues seem very diluted, and the sub-plots appear very dragged. The culmination to the climax is predictable but slow, with too many dilemmas lurking in the background. Even though the film is edited well, the story could have been stitched better.
2. Duration of Sukhee
The length of the film doesn’t justify the story it tells. 2 hours and 21 minutes is a lot for a simple story that Sukhee wants to tell. The film can easily be reduced by 20-30 minutes with a lot of unnecessary scenes being removed.
I would call Shilpa Shetty starrer Sukhee a sweet story, but not a tempting one. Yet, the message it tries to convey is something you need to watch. So give it a try, because the film would really leave an impact when seen on the big screen.
Also Read: Ahead of Sukhee, Shilpa Shetty expresses being AFRAID of taking up new projects: “Your worth is decided based on…”
Nawaz Kochra has been an experienced journalist in the entertainment arena for the last 9 years. Worked with the biggest brands in the media fraternity, he now heads the editorial desk at Bollywood Bubble. In addition to that, he even hosts a podcast called, Let’s Talk with Bollywood Bubble. Someone who is calm, yet a firecracker, and holds a balanced opinion about things, Nawaz is strong-headed and determined. He loves films as well as web shows and TV (yes, he is from that generation!), and that’s why writing about them is more of a passion for him than just a job.