This carefully crafted moment in Double XL makes the noble intention of director Satram Ramani and his writers Mudassar Aziz and Sasha Singh, apparent — they seek to challenge notions that compel “bigger” women to see smaller dreams
A still from Double XL
U/A: Comedy, drama
Dir: Satram Ramani
Cast: Sonakshi Sinha, Huma Qureshi
As Saira Khanna (Sonakshi Sinha) enters the lift to attend a party at her boyfriend’s house, she inadvertently checks herself in the mirror. Even though the make-up she wears is spotless, she finds the need to darken her lip-colour, adjust her hair, and her dress. It falls beautifully on her curves, but she is not convinced.
This carefully crafted moment in Double XL makes the noble intention of director Satram Ramani and his writers Mudassar Aziz and Sasha Singh, apparent — they seek to challenge notions that compel “bigger” women to see smaller dreams.
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Even in 2022, the standards of beauty that women are held up to in mainstream cinema are reasonably high. In these circumstances, the decision to base a movie on fat-shaming could be a bold move. The makers do a fine job of ensuring that the women in Double XL are not pitied. While making a case for the protagonists against regressive opinions, they also aptly refrain from adopting a preachy tone. The film establishes its message of empowerment, while making it easy to breeze through its runtime. It also makes the narrative personal to each woman battling body-image issues. For Sinha’s Saira, the upper-class fashion designer, it leads to a diminished sense of self. And for Meerut girl Rajshree Trivedi (Huma Qureshi), an aspiring sports presenter, her body-size ends up being the enemy of her dreams.
The film is peppered with a few emotionally elevating sequences that tug at one’s heart. Good intentions, though, don’t always translate into great films. Double XL never really comes together as a whole as it does in specific moments. The simplicity of its narrative borders mostly on superficiality, especially the romantic tracks of the leads, which turn out to be sore points in the film. It would have made for a more compelling dramedy had it continued to train attention to the relationship that the two women shared.
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Sinha’s character is a catalyst for that of Qureshi. While the latter has a satisfying arc, the film would have been a more enjoyable watch had Sinha’s role been etched out better.