Starring: Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Avneet Kaur
Director: Sai Kabir
The year 2023 has not been the best year at the box office so far for Siddiqui. After his ‘Afwaah’ and ‘Jogira Sara Ra Ra’ performed poorly at the box office, ‘Tiku Weds Sheru’ (TWS) – which had its global premier on Prime Video on Friday – also does not provide much hope for the ‘Moti Choor, Chakna Choor’ actor.
‘TWS’ has an overly complicated story. Riddled with far too many unnecessary subplots – which leave you confused as to where the story is headed – the film fails to rouse any interest in its first half. While the latter half picks up speed and seemingly gets to the main plot of the story, it requires the viewers to stay patient and stick through the first half which may prove a big ask.
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Generally speaking, ‘TWS’ is about Sheru (Siddiqui) – a struggling man in Mumbai who is just about making ends meet - and his new bride Tiku (Kaur), whose initial reason for marrying Sheru is to get a chance to settle in Mumbai. As time unfolds, Sheru struggles to meet his wife’s expensive lifestyle but insists on pretending to be a rich hotshot by lavishing Tiku with exorbitant gifts. Life catches up soon and eventually his shady contacts in Bollywood land him in jail. When Tiku learns about her husband’s debt and lies, she shuns him and is determined to make a living for herself, her baby and her younger sister, who also lives with her. Soon, she is faced by the harsh realities of life in Mumbai and the film industry.
Despite the sloppy direction and screenplay, the film must be commended for bringing issues such as the casting couch and the rampant exploitation of women to the fore. At points, it does succeed in doing justice to the psychological and emotional pain such exploitation can bring and the ways in which it can prove increasingly difficult to leave behind one’s past.
Although both Siddiqui’s and, especially, Kaur’s performances are good, and Ranaut’s short cameo is a refreshing treat, the direction fails to do justice to the film overall.
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Here’s hoping Siddiqui and Kaur’s upcoming projects do more justice to their acting talents!