Synopsis – Jai Mummy Di is a light-hearted family comedy that portrays the trials and tribulations a couple has to undergo due to the dynamics between their respective mothers.
My Take – Following the massive back to back success of Sonu Ke Titu Ki Sweety (2018) and De De Pyaar De (2019), filmmaker Luv Ranjan is on course to become a brand name, despite constant accusations against him for casually portraying sexism at the expense of humor in his films, whether he directs them or produces them.
However, his latest seemed more in the veins of a light-hearted family comedy than the usual rom com, with focus instead more on the trials and tribulations a couple undergoes due to the terrible dynamics between their respective mothers. Moreover the pairing of Sonalli Seygall and Sunny Singh, following their successful stint in Pyaar Ka Punchnama 2 (2015), added intrigue to the film.
That is until the trailer dropped, and completely revealed the whole film in just 2:56 minutes.
While I initially presumed the film would be a delight considering it had veteran actresses like Supriya Pathak and Poonam Dhillion exchanging blows, unfortunately, here, writer-director Navjot Gulati never utilizes their talent to the fullest. While the film does possess some laughable one-liners and contains some hilarious supporting characters, the insipidly written and equally sluggishly directed comedy never goes beyond what the promos have already shown us.
Despite a run time of just 100 minutes, the film derails quite quickly and tries to get back on track by just forcing in soulful tracks instead of anything that looks like a story, making it difficult for one to sit through beyond a point.
The story follows Puneet (Sunny Singh) and Saanjh (Sonnalli Seygall), a pair of young neighbors who have been dating secretly since their school days, and have continued to do so in college. However, the biggest thorn in their love story is the never ending animosity between their respective mothers, Laali Khanna (Supriya Pathak Kapoor) and Pinky Bhalla (Poonam Dhillon).
The former college friends turned foes, apparently, share some dark secret, and have over the years never missed a chance to embarrass one another even with the smallest things. Realizing their mothers will never accept their relationship, Puneet and Saanjh break up, and decide to go their separate ways. But it isn’t until they are engaged to be hitched to their family’s selected suitors that the two realize that they cannot live without each other.
Deciding that the only way for their relationship to succeed is to force the mothers to make peace, and in order do so they set out to find the root cause of their hatred.
Some stories are not cut out for cinematic adaptations, and that is the problem with this film. While the title misleads you into believing that the story is about the two women and their dominion of their positions as mothers, but it turns out that the film is obsessively focused on the love story that is cooking between the children of both the houses.
Agreed, you don’t look for logic and reason in hardcore potboilers, but the least the director Navjot Gulati could have done is provide loads of entertainment. Sadly, he makes mincemeat of a plot that had the potential to woo an easy going viewer. On face-value, you expect from such a film to provide instant humor. But what’s served on the platter is so insipid and lame. The comic scenes that make you laugh are few and far between.
The screenplay just tries to pack too much stuff, but how everything is spread out on the table makes you squirm in your seat, as the writing is not merely humdrum and dreary, but also amateurish at the same time. While the second half of the film is much better than the first in terms of its pace and drama, the story grows on you if one is patient, but otherwise, the flat screenplay with mindless personifications of men in the Bhalla and Khanna family, makes it a bland entertainer.
The glut of songs in the film also create hindrance rather than complementing the story. And when the reason for Pinkie and Lali’s enmity opens in the final minutes of the film, there is a feeling of being cheated as a viewer. It is that pointless.
Performance wise, Sunny Singh, tried his best to create an impact on his character. As a love-struck momma’s boy, he has his moments but that, too, withers away with time. Sonnalli Seygall, as a bold and bratty lass from Delhi, looks glamorous on screen but does not quite manage to get into the skin of her character; comes across as too plush for the colloquial role.
But the worst thing the film does is waste the talents of both Poonam Dhillon and Supriya Pathak, who have been given the titles of Mogambo and Gabbar in the film, but nothing like that appears in their characters. These two actors surely deserved more, but are sadly let down by the script. The experience of these two actresses is reflected in their performance, but due to loud and melodrama, they do not remain effective.
In supporting roles, Veer Rajwant Singh and Shiwani Saini are quite good, while Alok Nath is wasted in small role. Nevertheless, Varun Sharma, Nushrat Bharucha and Ishita Raj Sharma leave a mark with their cameos. On the whole, ‘Jai Mummy Di’ is a below average comedy let down by its lousy script and bland execution.
Directed – Navjot Gulati
Rated – PG13
Run Time – 100 minutes