Film Review: Hey! Sinamika [Hey, Angry Lady]

Film Review: Hey! Sinamika [Hey, Angry Lady]

Starring: Dulquer Salmaan, Aditi Rao Hydari, Kajal Aggarwal, Yogi Babu

Director: Brinda Master

This Tamil film (with subtitles) out on Netflix that takes its name from a popular A.R. Rahman hit song has all the trimmings of a light-hearted romantic comedy, complete with a pan-Indian star cast.

Mouna (Hydari), once madly and deeply in love with Yaazhan (Salmaan), has been driven to the edge of hysteria by his overly talkative avatar as a house husband. What Yaazhan believes is simply deep devotion and caring for his beautiful and charming wife – a qualified paleotempestologist or a weather scientist who specialises in the study of storms – has in fact taken on a form of suffocation for Mouna.

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Her sheer frustration leads her to seek the advice of friends and colleagues on the least hurtful route towards a divorce, which would make it seem like Yaazhan’s idea to break up their marriage rather than hers. The reason behind such subterfuge is an urge to not hurt a very obviously pure hearted man. But all her efforts to make her husband dislike her enough to break up with her end up in vain.

It is after a string of such frustrations that she comes across a therapist who specialises in helping women break free of unhappy marriages. Dr Malarvizhi (Aggarwal) clearly has her own troubled history that has led her down the path of marriage counselling of a different kind. She reluctantly accepts Mouna’s plea to help her on her unusual divorce mission. However, will the friendly neighbourhood doctor end up convincing her against such a severe step away from an obviously besotted husband?

There is a lot going for this film – its slick cinematography, melodious music and talented actors who are well-known for their cinematic talents across all parts of India. But it flounders this way and that in its flow, almost as if being blown around by the stormy weather the lead actress is supposed to be an expert on. The very premise of an overly caring husband driving his wife to divorce proves impossible to buy into.

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Salmaan is self-assured as the garrulous hubby but comes across as endearing rather than annoying with his non-stop chatter. Hydari as the supposedly long-suffering wife and Aggarwal as the complex therapist are both adequate in their respective roles. But what we are left with is a film making a plea for male chauvinism to not be entirely lost in a storm of feminism. Somehow, it feels unlikely that was the intended message of the female choreographer-turned-filmmaker Brinda Master.

The result is a likely one for the streaming watchlist only for some mindless fun, set against beautiful scenery and foot-tapping music and dance.

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