Cast: Anil Kapoor, Rajkummar Rao, Regina Cassandra, Sonam Kapoor
In a dark theater, Sweety collides with Sahil in the kind of classic meet-cute that sparks thousands of Bollywood romances. But Sweety has a secret, one she doesn’t have time to tell Sahil while he’s in the throes of infatuation, and one she can’t tell her conservative Hindi family that expects her to fall in love with a nice Hindi boy. That secret, suggested in the film’s electric opening musical number, is that Sweety has a thing for girls.
A comedy of misrecognition that turns into a gorgeous drama testing family bonds, EK LADKI KO DEKHA TOH AISA LAGA is the first high-profile Bollywood film to center a lesbian character–no small task for an industry so invested in bloodlines, tradition, and marriage. Well aware of that baggage, director Shelly Chopra Dhar reinvents the format by pulling two ingenious moves: one by casting real-life father-daughter duo Anil and Sonam Kapoor to lift the stakes and believability, and second by dedicating the second half of the film to the putting on of an Om Shanti Om-esque musical about a lesbian romance, reflexively acknowledging the difficulties not just of living honestly, but also of telling such a story in the mainstream. All the while, Dhar pays tribute to the format itself–the costumes, the music, the pageantry– confident that an industry known for romance has more room for love than it knows. -Brian Hu
Admission includes a pre-screening reception from 5:30-7PM in the Ultrastar Lobby.
After the screening, please join us for an After Party at BJ’s Restaurant and Brewhouse.
Thu Apr 18