Badhaai Do, Rajkumar Rao and Bhumi Pednekar’s latest film is receiving mixed reviews from the audience and critics. The movie recently also released on Netflix.

The film revolves around the concept of a lavender marriage. Shardul Thakur (Rajkummar Rao), a cop from a typical middle-class family who is gay, and Sumi (Bhumi Pednekar), a PT teacher who is a lesbian, enter into a marriage of convenience to escape the family pressures.

There are several reasons why the two choose to get married and not the alternative option of coming out to their respective families but mainly because they do not have any choice. It eventually happens. Their families get to know about their sexual orientations.

Sumi and her partner Rimjhim are caught in an intimate act by Shardul’s mother and she is left with no other choice but to tell everything to her family. The conversations that follow among Sumi’s family are heartbreaking.

While her brother calls her a ‘pervert’, ‘ghatiya’ and other disrespectful names, her mother cries non-stop blaming Sumi for everything.

Shardul, on the other hand, chooses to stay quiet for a while thinking he would be able to hide his secret. But the courage he shows in coming out towards the end of the film is what makes the entire movie worth watching and relatable.

The entire Thakur family assembles and asks Shardul how he could not see that Sumi, his wife, was a lesbian. They even question his abilities as a policeman. From women of the family recalling that they even changed clothes in front of Sumi to Shardul’s brother-in-law (a doctor) saying that there’s no cure for this disease even in Homeopathy, they believe that Shardul was the one who was suffering in this marriage.

This is when he speaks and shuts his brother-in-law.

Aap toh doctor ho na jiyaji, aapko toh pata hona chahiye ki yeh koi bimari nahi hai. 

The conversation he has with his family is awkward but real. It comes as a shock to a middle-class small-town Indian family but I’m glad the film showed it in the best way possible.

He talks about how he felt alone all his life despite getting so much love from a big family. He had no one to share his feelings with. And he also makes it clear that there’s nothing wrong with Sumi. 

What happens next is the best part of the film I would say. As the entire family sits in disbelief and shock, Shardul goes to the terrace and calls Sumi. He just cries and cries.

Sumi, humne bol diya. Sabko bata diya.

Sumi, on the other side, feels proud of him and the two share a moment of freedom and happiness within.

In the end, acceptance comes. Bit by bit, little at a time. It’s a refreshing change to see, in movies at least.

Shardul’s coming out to his family will always remain one of the breakthrough scenes in Hindi movies, until we have more such films.