Star Cast: Sharib Hashmi, Jyotii Sethi and Nutan Surya
Director: Abhishek Saxena
What’s Good: Socially relevant topic, Sharib’s acting
What’s Bad: The film finishes while you are desperately waiting for Phullu to achieve his dream. And the film’s title could be anything but Phullu.
Loo Break: Yes
Watch or Not?: Suffices for an educational film to be shown in schools or villages
Phullu is a village youth who stays with his mother and sister. He is good for nothing as he does not do any work to earn in his village and is even reluctant to go to bigger cities and find a job. The only job he does is visiting the nearby town every now and then and buying goods for village households. The women often order him sanitary pads and Phullu brings them although he is unaware of what he is buying and what purpose it serves. Frustrated with his lack of initiative to start a career, his mother gets him married so that his wife can convince him to earn for the family. But Phullu doesn’t want to work at any cost.
After marriage, he learns about menstruation and how village women, who are even unaware about sanitary pads, use cloth. They often catch infection but stick to the age old method of using cloth. When Phullu’s wife catches infection he really gets worried and starts thinking of ways to help her. From a lady doctor sitting in a medicine store in the town, Phullu comes to know about what menstruation means and how women in rural India still use cloth due to lack of awareness on the same.
This inspires Phullu to do something to do away with the pain of women. He starts working in a sanitary pad manufacturing factory and in no time learns the process of making pads. Phullu comes back to his village and makes handmade sanitary pads. However, he is treated rudely by the women of his village including his own sister. The only person who stands by him is his wife but she is pregnant and can’t test a sanitary pad. What will he do now?
What will he do now?
Phullu Review: Script Analysis
Phullu is a very socially relevant film which aims to spread awareness about menstruation and the necessity for hygiene. The film spreads a message that how important it is to understand and discuss the topic, which is still considered as a taboo in our country and how urgent it is for the rural population to take steps for menstrual hygiene. Periods is still a hush-hush matter and we, till date, think twice before discussing it openly, most of us choosing not to do so. That is exactly where scriptwriter Shaheen Iqbal scores. In fact, Phullu is a film good enough to be showcased in schools for teaching children about the need for menstrual hygiene.
The dialogues could be better.
The script also points a finger at the hypocrisy of Indian religious places where menstruation is worshiped in a temple like Kamakhya and yet women on their periods are not expected to enter a temple or mosque.
However, where the script lags behind is a proper purpose why Phullu, who knew nothing about menstruation even after his marriage, makes it his life’s only aim to provide sanitary napkins for the women of his village. The ending too leads us nowhere about what Phullu does next to achieve his dream, which he earlier describes as making cheap sanitary pads for rural women who can’t afford it.
Phullu Review: Star Performance
Sharib Hashmi (Phullu) is absolutely brilliant! He carries the entire film on his shoulders and you are bound to love him after watching it.
Jyotii Sethi and Nutan Surya are equally easy and natural as Phullu’s wife and mother.
Inaamulhaq is a bit loud but puts up an enjoyable performance in his cameo.
Phullu Review: Direction, Music
The film moves at a slow and relaxed pace and seems to be in no hurry to reach the climax. While I desperately wait for the film to reach climax it finishes abruptly. The ending could seriously have been much better.
Simarjit Singh Suman does an excellent work on the camera and beautifully captures scenes on the river, ganga aarti and aerial shots.
The songs Man Matanga Re and Saanwla Saanwla are melodious and enjoyable.
Phullu Review: The Last Word
Phullu teaches us that if you have the determination to reach your goal and work hard towards achieving it, you will overcome all the obstacles on the way.
The film has a lot to teach and is a must watch for people in rural India. I am sure if the government had a campaign on menstrual hygiene, they would showcase Phullu for free in villages across India. What the makers are trying to preach through Phullu and what they have finally come up with, could be easily done through a short film. 2 stars for this.
Phullu releases on 16th June 2017.
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