Dear Luv Ranjan,
Who hurt you?
This is the thought I had while leaving the theatre after watching “Sonu ke Titu ki Seeety.” It’s writer and director, the aforementioned Ranjan, also wrote and directed the successful “Pyaar ka Punchnaama” and “Pyaar ka Punchnama 2”, movies which are also about the ways in which women can change a man’s life. But the same discomfort I had watching those films crept in to “Sonu.”
“Sonu ke Titu ki Sweety” centres on the story of a man (Sonu) who is convinced that his best friend (Titu) is being tricked into marriage by the too-good-to-be-true Sweety. During the first half of the movie I often enjoyed the antics of the obviously immature Sonu has he plotted ways to out his friend’s fiancee. I thought that surely he would see that the root of his insecurity lay in himself and that he and his friend needed to work out how their relationship would change in the future.
It turns out that Sweety really is a conniving witch and, what’s worse, she’s given no motive to be so. She is just simply bad, which to me paints a picture in which all women are merely foils and villains in the lives of men. Even other women in the movie serve primarily to destroy their husbands fun by insisting that they give up smoking or eat nutritiously. How cruel.
I don’t mind seeing a film with a female villain, but it seems out female villains must suffer from the same total lack of individuality and personality that our heroines do. And this villain goes a step too far for a movie that is meant to be a rowdy comedy, with Sweety even using sex to manipulate the pitiful Titu (another character with no distinct personality whatsoever). And it’s hard to cheer for Sonu when one of his big victories in the film is abusing and humiliating his household help (hired by Sweety), a man who literally sleeps on his kitchen floor.
It seems obvious that Luv Ranjan has no love for women or the men who allow themselves to be beholden to them.
My conflicted feelings come from the fact that I did find much humour in this movie and the completely packed theatre I was in seemed to feel the same way. But by the time of the wedding, I wasn’t cheering for any of these characters, except perhaps Titu. He needs to jilt his bride and his best friend.