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Review: 'Chhatriwali' is just another social-issue-driven mundane story with not-so-complicated drama

Chhatriwali gives you a recap of your 10th-grade biology 'reproduction' chapter adding family drama and romance to it, sans any novelty or entertainment per se.

Published: Friday,Jan 20, 2023 04:46 AM GMT-07:00
Updated: Friday,Jan 20, 2023 04:47 AM GMT-07:00
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Chhatriwali review

Chhatriwali review

The core level regressive and taboo themes like "safe sex," "sex education," "gender inequity," and other such issues are still chosen by Indian filmmakers amidst our cries of being all progressive and accessible to the west permeating our culture. Coming up with a film on similar lines, titled 'Chhatriwali' is director Tejas Deoska and headlining the film as a female lead is Rakul Preet Singh. Having had the chance to watch the film beforehand, this is what I feel about it.


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The Plot

The Plot

Rakul Preet Singh's character, Sanya Dhingra, is a lower-middle-class graduate in chemistry from Karnal who is looking for a high-paying job. She manages in landing a job as the quality control manager for a condom manufacturer. She successfully covers this information from a significant period of time from her mother, her husband, and his family. After learning about a few difficulties her sister-in-law is experiencing due to unprotected sex, she gets inspired to initiate a sex education campaign in the village while maintaining her anonymity.

Follows this, the cliched drama and the saga to fight all odds and preach like a monk, where at the end it's all blossoming flowers. 

The Love Angle

The Love Angle

For once, the romance angle between Sumeet Vyas and Rakul Preet Singh has a promising start. It progresses quickly as a montage with a romantic song playing in the background, yet it doesn't feel forced into the story and is plausible. There are some corny dialogues and scenes between the two that will cringe you out. The 'baby jaanu' conversations, with Rakul Preet Singh mouthing them in her child-like tone, is a complete turn-off. 

Not so preachy but mundane plot

Not so preachy but mundane plot

Although the movie doesn't really begin on a preachy tone, which is a good thing, the theme is presented in a fairly banal way. When somebody like Satish Kaushik and Sumeet Vyas are involved, one may expect entertainment, but that doesn't happen very often. There aren't several conflicts of interest, and everything gets back to normal after a number of fortunate coincidences, a few discussions about safe sex here, and a few lectures on sex education there. The intended message is undoubtedly delivered, however, it is not adequately packaged or layered.

The Performances

The Performances

Rakul Preet Singh as Sanya gives one of her best performances. Carrying the film on her shoulders with notable supporting characters, she succeeds as the condom QC head. She has been given a character arc and she delivers as expected.

Sumeet Vyas as Rishi Kalra doesn't really come off as Sumeet Vyas. I barely remember even chuckling once at any of his lines, while a lot more could have been extracted from the actor. He surely feels underused here. 

Satish Kaushik as Mr. Lamba is the only light-heartening element of the film. Whenever he uses the screen space, he owns it. 

Rajesh Tailang as Ratan Kalra keeps up with his stern and stubborn attitude and fits well for his role. Other characters like Dolly Ahluwalia, Riva Arora, Prachi Shah, and Rakesh Bedi keep it fair and flair.

Dialogues and Surrogate references

 Dialogues and Surrogate references

Satish Kaushik hailing the generation with his line, 'Is generation ki baat kuch aur hai...' is something that will stick around. Well, dialogues are a weak point here, because there aren't many punchlines or even something catchy that would actually come into notice.'

There are scenes of 'condom purchasing', where Sumeet's character and then other guys of the village are seen asking the vendor for toothpaste, then an odmos, and then slyly a pack of 'chhatri'. There are many other surrogate references like these, which have been incorporated. 

The Verdict

In a nutshell, 'Chhatriwali' gives you a recap of your 10th-grade biology 'reproduction' chapter adding family drama and romance to it, sans any novelty or entertainment per se. 

Rating:  ** 1/2  (2.5/5) stars


Satish Kaushik Sumeet Vyas Rakul Preet Singh Chhatriwali 


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