Monday, December 30, 2019

Review: Good Newwz

Release date: December 27, 2019
Running time: 134 minutes
Starring: Akshay Kumar, Kareena Kapoor, Diljit Dosanjh 

Good Newwz is a new comedy / drama about a couple who turn to IVF in order to have a child.  Facing increasing societal, family, and marital pressure to have a child, Varuun and Deepti Batra (Kumar and Kapoor) turn to a well respected doctor to finally give them the child they think they have been wanting.  However, in a strange coincidence, Mr. Batra's sperm sample gets mixed up with another, very different Batra couple, Honey and Monika Batra (Dosanjh and Avani).  How these two very different couples deal with this mix up and the resultant life decisions form the crux of this film. 

Good Newwz is a funny movie, with many laugh out loud moments and jokes with plenty of double meaning, which is what I would have expected from Kumar.  However, a good portion of the humor also comes from co-star Dosanjh and his outlandish but totally heartfelt character Honey Batra.  Although Varuun and Deepti were the main protagonists, I didn't love their characters.  Both characters have times when their actions make them unlikable,  and much of their conflict seem to be because they give in to societal pressures.  This is odd because I do like both of those actors, especially Kumar.  I think the character was written to be more stereotypical Indian working man and that hurts this part of the film.  Honey and Monika, on the other hand, seem to be much more pure-hearted and relatable, despite their outlandish characters.  That's not to say that Varuun and Deepti were unlikable all the time; they just took many actions in the film that I did not agree with or mostly understand.  And despite the fact that part of the fun of this film is seeing all the different characters interact, I believe you could have changed Varuun and Deepti slightly and still retained much of the essential conflict.

Despite Good Newwz being marketed as a comedy, there are many surprisingly heartfelt and dramatic moments in the film.  Whenever you deal with something as personal as children and issues with conception, there will inevitably be some associated drama.  And I loved that Good Newwz didn't shy away from a lot of this: the medical information, the societal pressure, the sexual innuendo, it is all left in the film.  Good Newwz portrays this well and despite all the comedy surrounding it, the heartfelt moments do feel pure.  And this drama is interspersed with some very funny scenes, particularly with Honey and Monika.  One thing I do wish we got was more information on the other Batras.  They are introduced and you get some story about them, but I wanted to know more about where they came from and what they did.  The main characters are Varuun and Deepti, but I wanted to get a good picture of all the cast.  

Good Newwz delivers some enjoyable characters, laugh out loud comedy, and tackles some important issues with surprisingly heartfelt dramatic moments in a film that will entertain you right from conception.

Rent It

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