There are stories about underdogs and then there are stories about women empowerment. In many of these stories, we have seen that the protagonist/subject of the narrative is usually affected by some outsider, what happens when you are fighting your own demons and the people who love you?!
Double XL is an apt title for this story as the crux that you draw out is indeed in a double xl proportion. It is a story about two women Saira Khanna (Sonakshi Sinha), from the urban New Delhi and Rajshree Trivedi (Hum Qureshi), from the heartland Meerut, of Uttar Pradesh, who navigate through life, embracing body positivity and celebrating female friendship. The two along with two more (Srikanth and Zorawar) break the myth that beauty corresponds to size, a belief that our society has held for generations. These two plus size women discover themselves and realise their dreams.
Saira aspires to be a fashion designer, with a presentation video to be shot in UK for her (label’s) proposed investors. She has already faced a failed romance and to add to that, her crew goes missing at the last moment! On the other hand, is Rajshree, an aspiring (cricketing) sports presenter, who is invited (to Delhi) for an interview but faces body shaming as her turn comes. She is told that her interview is ‘not required’ since she is ‘healthy’. She has been receiving such comments even for a failed marriage proposal. Circumstance brings both in a ‘wash’room to lend shoulder to the other.
The two strong willed ladies’ makeup their minds and head to UK with a vow to atleast fulfil one’s dream assuming the other’s to be situational!! They are joined by Srikanth Sreevardhan (Mahat Raghavendra) and Zorawar Rehmani (Zaheer Iqbal). While Sri is the cameraman, aspiring to be P C Sreeram, Zorawar is their UK line producer. The narrative gets hilarious to interesting and sober to meaningful from hereon. There is not a dull moment as the audience is captivated with the unusual flow of events with very good lines (Mudassar Aziz) sprinkled in to garnish the well-prepared recipe. And remember not to miss the interval point, for anything in the world. The post interval part gets into the drama mode with things slowly falling in place.
What I like about the film is that there is nothing in excess, the actors are in complete control of their situations. There is some typical family drama thrown in with relationships being broken even before they are made. And the best part is the slight hint of romance that is there but remains uncommitted and silent for the audience’s imagination to build the rest of the story.
A special mention for the ‘Taali Taali’ song that comes just at the right time, makes your mood play along with the characters. Also, ‘Tumse Mila Doon’ a melodious declaration of love song interspersed with lyrics in both Hindi /Urdu and Telugu is amazing and makes up for a very light romantic song.
As mentioned above, Sonakshi Sinha and Huma Qureshi are in great command and look extremely confident in their parts, not to miss the fun they are having playing the characters too. Mahat Raghavendra making his Hindi film debut is excellent and suits to the T as a South Indian knowing broken Hindi mostly expressing with his eyes. Zaheer Iqbal brings in the much-needed light moments also enjoying the character with great confidence. It appears that the foursome had a gala time together playing their parts and bringing a sensitive story in the most entertaining manner.
The veteran actors Kanwaljeet Singh, Shubha Khote with Alka Badola Kaushal make interesting and believable characters to support the narrative. Mudassar Aziz’s story & dialogues are bang on and set the right mood with Satramm Ramani’s well-crafted narrative.
Overall, Double XL is a well-made film that might be liked by gentry in all shapes, sizes, and age too. By the way, do not miss the interval!!
Movie: Double XL
Director: Satramm Ramani
Cast: Sonakshi Sinha, Huma Qureshi, Mahat Raghavendra, Zaheer Iqbal, Alka Badola Kaushal, Kanwaljeet Singh, Shubha Khote