February 22, 2020
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English Vinglish

Sometimes, good movies can be made on the trifles of life than on a big idea. Gauri Shinde has made one

English Vinglish
English Vinglish

Starring: Sridevi, Adil Hussain, Mehdi Nebbou
Directed by Gauri Shinde
Rating: ***

Sometimes, good movies can be made on the trifles of life than on a big idea. Gauri Shinde has made one—that springs from a recurring scene of my own teenage years. The embarrassment of bringing my non-English-speaking mother to the PTA, the mortification on hearing her speak to the teachers in Hindi and, later, the incredulity in seeing how popular she was among them. One of the many times when my tacit love for her was swapped for my insane desire to not acknowledge her. But this could be a page out of anyone’s life. Haven’t we all been callous with people we are close to?

Shinde succeeds in making a genuine and empathetic film. It’s set around a very real-world issue: where a wife and mother is loved yet taken for granted. Where she’s hurt unintentionally, although knowingly too at times. Where demands are placed on her, but rarely are her expectations met. The story of one woman’s quest to find an identity beyond the yummy laddoos she makes, of discovering life away from home and family, of getting to love herself and gain respect from those around her—is told with warmth, lightness and subtlety. There’s no rabidness, extremism, jerk, break, or a major turnaround. Instead, it’s all about a gentle renegotiation of relations, conducted perfectly in tune with the movie’s tenor. A few scenes tip over into the excessive and cutesy, there is a bit of the Mind Your Language kind of broad humour, but it never strays very far from its simple, heartwarming core.

Sridevi sports an enviable wardrobe, changing from one gorgeous sari to another at practically every turn of dialogue. The halting English appears a bit practised and we may keep debating about whether she looks too thin or if her nose is a bit off. But she is persuasive, delightfully spontaneous with the kids— think Jaya Bachchan in Parichay. She is equally good at communicating her problems and dilemmas: surprise at being praised, talking to a person whose language she doesn’t understand or her guilt at thinking of herself and not her kids. The men are distracting; be it her salt-’n-pepper husband (Adil Hussain) or Mehdi Nebbou, her French admirer telling her: “Your eyes are like two drops of coffee in a cloud of milk.” I went weak in the knees.

High Fives


  1. Heroine
  2. Barfi!
  3. Raaz 3
  4. Ek Tha Tiger
  5. Qayamat Hi Qayamat


  1. Hotel Transylvania
  2. Looper
  3. End Of Watch
  4. Trouble With The Curve
  5. House At The End Of...Street


  1. Take A Little Ride (Jason Aldean)
  2. Wanted (Hunter Hayes)
  3. Cowboys and Angels (Dustin Lynch)
  4. Why Ya Wanna (Jana Kramer)
  5. Blown Away (Carrie Underwood)

Courtesy: BoxofficeIndia.co.in

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