Review: 'Meenakshi Sundareshwar' is a Snoozefest With Leads With Zero Chemistry
Sanya Malhotra and Abhimanyu Dassani star as a newly married couple in Netflix's Meenakshi Sundareshwar.
Review: Meenakshi Sundareshwar is a Snoozefest With Leads With Zero Chemistry
The film opens with the voice of the man we soon realise is telling us about his own marriage. He proceeds to inform us about the Meenakshi Sundareshwara temple, invoking Shiv and Parvati and the legend associated with the temple.
Further we are told that he will reveal how divine interventions made his marriage both possible and special. That’s supposed to be the cutest thing about the couple really! That together their names stand for the most revered temple.
But imagine if relationships are judged solely on the basis of what provisions their names provide for a catchy portmanteau? This film serves as a good example to never do that!
Sundareshwar, our hero, has the personality of a house fly. He doesn’t want to join his family saree business and is still hunting for a job. But for an arranged marriage market it looks like he has decent prospects. Meenakshi is adjusting the framed posters of Rajinikanth so that her room can reflect her personality we are told.
The youngsters definitely come across like they needed an intervention for sure if not divine then at least a friendly neighbour could have walked in and told them: to please get a life first.
But Meenakshi, Sundareshwar together spell divine and both seem unusually okay about spending life together as husband and wife on the presumption that if the names sound so good together how bad can things be? Turns out very!
Their love story sits awkwardly from the start. They get married. Husband gets a call for a job interview and must leave for another city on their “subah raat.” That’s fine. Sad things happen but all that follows and how the characters react to it is so bewildering it’s tough to take them and their story seriously!
Sundareshwar always says he doesn’t like films because they put him to sleep. Well by this point all of us are Sundareshwar and a shut eye doesn’t seem like such a bad idea.
The most frustrating thing about Meenakshi Sundareshwar is that we keep waiting for something to happen and nothing ever does. Director Vivek Soni, who has also written it, with Aarsh Vora‘s determination to whip up complications where there are none and craft outlandish scenes that mean nothing in the larger scheme of things add to the discomfort.
Like a tech company boss who has set for himself a world limit of 1000 words a day. So, every time he speaks his alarm goes off reminding him words are scarce. Well, our patience too! At one point Meenakshi, who is happy and chirpy and smiling by herself in a cab, suddenly asks the driver to stop the car cause she feels like dancing.
She then gets down and begins dancing hysterically in the middle of the road lit only by the headlights of the car and a bewildered driver gaping. The film probably is making a point about how different these two people are but we are no longer interested.
Thalaiva means 'Leader' and so the other intervention by “Rajini” is force fit simply to reach a denouement. And we are happy. Abhimanyu Dassani and Sanya Malhotra have zero chemistry and appear so unsure and unconvincing it almost feels like they are filling in and are a proxy for someone else. It’s a total snoozefest.
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