Tu Hai Mera Sunday movie cast: Barun Sobti, Shahana Goswami, Vishal Malhotra, Avinash Tiwary, Rasika Duggal, Nakul Bhalla, Maanvi Gagroo, Jay Upadhyay, Shiv Subramaniam
Tu Hai Mera Sunday movie director: Milind Dhaimade
Tu Hai Mera Sunday rating: Three and a half stars
A bunch of football enthusiasts get together for a Sunday game on Juhu beach in Mumbai. This one-line premise blossoms into a lovely slice-of-life film, which shines a light on Mumbai’s diversity, and on how sport can become a unifier-cum-healing agent in the best way possible. It also tells us that there is always a way out, even if the problem looks insurmountable.
Arjun (Sobti) is a charmer who has chucked the fast track corporate maze to explore other ways, and whose chance encounter with a shaky old man (Subramanyam) and his attractive daughter Kavi (Goswami) gets this thing rolling.
Arjun and his pals, all of whom come from different backgrounds, as their names clearly suggest—Dominic, Rashid, Jayesh, Mehernosh—look forward to this Sunday ritual, as a way of de-stressing, letting their hair down, and just, you know, hanging.
The strength of the film is in its writing, intensely rooted and real. The characters have messy backstories and relationships, which gives them depth: Dominic’s (Malhotra) harried mother has to deal with two permanently squabbling sons; Rashid (Tiwary) is a love-‘em-and-leave-‘em type who chances upon a potentially life-altering bright-eyed young woman (Duggal); Jayesh (Udadhyay) lives with his large, noisy Gujarati joint family; and Mehernosh (Bhalla) is a put-upon, increasingly-frustrated office drone till one day something snaps.
The detailing is spot on. Only in a few places does it feel a tad underlined, but on the whole, it is thoroughly good-natured. The ensemble cast plays well together, especially in the falling-in-like-and-something-more segments between Arjun and Kavi (why don’t we see more of the talented Shahana?), and in the unlikely bonding between Rashid and the young mother of two energetic hearing-impaired boys.
Dhaimade is clearly skilled at creating life-like characters who feel as if they are people you could know, tics and all. ‘Tu Hai Mera Sunday’ is a feel-good, light-hearted yarn. And it comes at a time when that precious, vanishing space—middle-of-the-road and realistic, not too shiny or too drab but just right—needs an urgent refill.
I guarantee you will leave smiling.