Tag Archives: Shubh Mangal Saavdhan

Movie Review: Shubh Mangal Saavdhan (2017)

3 Stars (out of 4)

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First Vicky Donor, and now Shubh Mangal Saavdhan. Ayushmann Khurrana is the go-to actor for reproduction-themed romantic comedies.

Khurrana plays a shy ad-man named Mudit who has his eye on Sugandha (Bhumi Pednekar). His initial attempt to talk to her is interrupted when a performing bear tries humping Mudit’s leg, a comical introduction to the movie’s theme of frustrated sexual congress.

The couple winds up in a kind of hybrid love-marriage/arranged-marriage scenario in which their mutual attraction requires the approval of both families. Sugandha is troubled by her family’s desire to rush her to the altar: “Mummy, Mudit and I just met a few days ago.” “What a time you’re living in,” Mummy (Seema Bhargava Pahwa) replies. “At least you two got to meet.”

The addition of these interested parties into the relationship takes its toll on the couple before their romance can really begin. When Sugandha’s family leaves town, the lovebirds seize the opportunity to get frisky. Yet the pressure for things to go well — under the watchful gaze of portraits of Sugandha’s departed grandparents, no less — leave Mudit unable to perform.

Rather than work the problem out between themselves, Mudit insists that he solve his issue his way, enlisting his two buddies for help and freezing out Sugandha. This leaves her blaming herself for the issue, with her equally inexperienced friend Ginni (Anshul Chauhan) her only support.

The real source of trouble for the couple is their unwillingness to talk to each other, which is an unusual problem to have in a movie as dialogue-heavy as Shubh Mangal Saavdhan. Many words are said with little forward plot movement and not a lot of visual dynamism.

That said, Sugandha’s mom gets plenty of funny lines, especially during a sex-ed lecture to her adult daughter themed around Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves. “What happens if Ali Baba can’t get into the cave?” Sugandha wonders aloud. Soon enough everyone in both families knows that Mudit can’t get an erection.

Although geared at an audience old enough to understand the ins and outs of human reproduction, Shubh Mangal Saavdhan is sweet and not overly graphic. Khurrana is adorable, and Pednekar beautifully portrays Sugandha’s self-doubt and frustration throughout the couple’s ordeal.  The film just needed less talking and more action (and get rid of Jimmy Shergill’s awkward cameo, please).

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Bollywood Box Office: October 27-29, 2017

Golmaal Again extended its lead on Secret Superstar in the films’ second weekend in North American theaters, thanks to its popularity in Canada. From October 27-29, 2017, Golmaal Again earned $499,717 from 230 theaters ($2,173 average), bringing its total earnings to $1,858,958. During the same weekend, Secret Superstar earned $445,789 from 162 theaters ($2,752 average), raising its total to $1,536,637.

A little digging reveals the huge boost Canada is giving to Golmaal Again. Based on the weekend’s earnings above, Golmaal Again out-earned Secret Superstar by a total of $53,928. However, Golmaal Again‘s advantage in the United States was just $3,427, even though it played in 67 more theaters than Secret Superstar. In Canada — where Golmaal Again showed in just one more theater than Secret Superstar — the comedy sequel earned $50,501 more than the coming-of-age musical drama! The overall advantage Golmaal Again has over Secret Superstar is virtually the same in both countries: $165,418 in the US and $156,900 in Canada.

TLDR: Canadians like Golmaal Again a lot more than Secret Superstar.

Judwaa 2 earned $245 over the weekend from one Canadian theater, per Bollywood Hungama, which didn’t report any US earnings for the film for a second weekend in a row. Shubh Mangal Saavdhan took in $150 from one US theater in its ninth weekend of release.

Sources: Box Office Mojo and Rentrak, via Bollywood Hungama

Bollywood Box Office: October 20-22, 2017

Both of the Hindi movies released in time for Diwali did very well in North America over the weekend of October 20-22, 2017. Not surprisingly, the film showing in more theaters — Golmaal Again — fared the better of the two, earning $1,003,569 from 288 theaters ($3,485 average; adjusted average of $3,787 from 265 theaters*). Using the 265 theater count that Box Office Mojo reports for the film, Golmaal Again did vastly better in Canada than the United States, averaging $9,233 in 23 Canadian theaters versus $3,269 in 242 US theaters. Golmaal Again improved on Golmaal 3‘s North American opening weekend haul of $626,432 from 86 theaters in 2010, made possible by tripling the number of theaters. (Update: Per Gitesh Pandya, Reliance reports weekend earnings for Golmaal Again of $1,013,893 from 267 theaters).

Secret Superstar also turned in a good performance over the weekend, earning $754,185 from 207 theaters ($3,643 average; adjusted average of $4,121 from 183 theaters). The difference in per-theater averages between Canada and the US was less stark for Secret Superstar: $5,281 at 24 Canadian theaters versus $3,946 at 159 US theaters. Secret Superstar got a jump on Golmaal Again by releasing on Thursday, October 19, and the $60,632 it earned on Thursday brings its total earnings thus far to $814,817.

Among North American cinema owners, none can be happier than the owners of the four Canadian theaters that showed the Tamil movie Mersal over the weekend, averaging earnings of $36,735 per theater. The film’s total earnings across the US and Canada stand at $1,347,387 since its Tuesday, October 17 release.

Bollywood Hungama failed to report US earnings for Judwaa 2, which took in $5,715 from three Canadian theaters over the weekend. Box Office Mojo reports total earnings of $1,431,255 for Judwaa 2 thus far.

Other Bollywood movies still showing in US theaters:

  • Bareilly Ki Barfi: Week 10; $256 from one theater; $572,764 total
  • Chef: Week 3; $114 from one theater; $94,085 total
  • Shubh Mangal Saavdhan: Week 8; $110 from one theater; $689,874 total

*Bollywood Hungama frequently counts Canadian theaters twice in when they report figures for a film’s first few weeks of release. When possible, I verify theater counts at Box Office Mojo, but I use Bollywood Hungama as my primary source because they provide a comprehensive and consistent — if flawed — data set.

Sources: Box Office Mojo, Gitesh Pandya, and Rentrak, via Bollywood Hungama

Bollywood Box Office: October 13-15, 2017

Absent competition from any new Bollywood releases, Judwaa 2 led the North American box office for a third straight weekend. From October 13-15, 2017, the comedy reboot earned $101,341 from 125 theaters ($811 average), becoming just the fifth Hindi film of the year to earn more than $100,000 in its third weekend of release. Its current total of $1,392,946 ranks Judwaa 2 in ninth place for the year.

Another bit of happy news (on a much more modest scale) is that Bareilly Ki Barfi posted the highest ninth-weekend earnings of the year, by a long shot. The $1,409 the romantic comedy earned from two theaters ($705 average) beat out Baahubali 2‘s Weekend 9 earnings of $726 from three theaters and Toilet: Ek Prem Katha‘s $120 from one theater — quite the feat for a movie whose widest release was 44 theaters! Bareilly Ki Barfi‘s total stands at $572,298.

Chef fared poorly in its second weekend in North America, earning $10,920 from 23 theaters ($475 average), bringing its total to $91,878.

Other Hindi movies still showing in the United States:

  • Shubh Mangal Saavdhan: Week 7; $819 from one theater; $629,427 total
  • Simran: Week 5; $505 from one theater; $405,394 total
  • Tu Hai Mera Sunday: Week 2; $441 from five theaters; $88 average; $4,694 total
  • Bhoomi: Week 4; $374 from two theaters; $187 average; $72,297 total
  • Toilet — Ek Prem Katha: Week 10; $53 from one theater; $1872,300 total

Sources: Sumit Chadha and Rentrak, via Bollywood Hungama

Bollywood Box Office: October 6-8, 2017

Two new Hindi films had disastrous opening weekends in North America from October 6-8, 2017. The higher-profile release — Saif Ali Khan’s Chef — took in $57,179 from 64 theaters ($893 average; adjusted average of $1,059 from 54 theaters*), according to Bollywood Hungama. Even with a modest theater count, one would expect better from a remake of an American film with a big star opening on Columbus Day weekend.

The weekend’s other new release — Tu Hai Mera Sunday — tanked, predictably. The movie had a mostly unrecognizable cast, and there was no advanced publicity for its international release. It was no surprise, then, that Tu Hai Mera Sunday made just $4,253 from 20 theaters ($213 average) over the weekend, according to Sumit Chadha.

The recent lousy debuts of movies like Tu Hai Mera Sunday and Haseena Parkar have me scratching my head as to why many low-budget Hindi movies still opt for theatrical releases in the United States and Canada, especially with so much competition among streaming services for new Bollywood content. To date, 48 Hindi movies — including multilingual movies like Baahubali 2 and The Ghazi Attack and special engagement releases like the movies of Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh — have opened in North American theaters this year. If the eight Hindi movies that I suspect will open here before the end of the year actually do so, that would make 56 Bollywood movies released in North America in 2017 — four more titles than the previous record release year of 2014. What can be gained when a movie earns less than $10,000 in its opening weekend here, as is the case for six titles already this year? Eleven films haven’t even made $50,000 over the courses of their theatrical runs. It’s perplexing.

Other Hindi movies still in North American theaters:

  • Bareilly Ki Barfi: Week 8; $3,980 from three theaters; $1,327 average; $569,635 total
  • Shubh Mangal Saavdhan: Week 6; $2,418 from two theaters; $1,209 average; $629,427 total
  • Simran: Week 4; $1,350 from three theaters; $450 average; $404,301 total
  • Bhoomi: Week 3; $258 from three theaters; $86 average; $71,803 total
  • Toilet — Ek Prem Katha: Week 9; $120 from one theater; $1,872,211 total

*Bollywood Hungama frequently counts Canadian theaters twice in when they report figures for a film’s first few weeks of release. When possible, I verify theater counts at Box Office Mojo, but I use Bollywood Hungama as my primary source because they provide a comprehensive and consistent — if flawed — data set.

Sources: Box Office Mojo, Sumit Chadha, and Rentrak, via Bollywood Hungama

Bollywood Box Office: September 29-October 1, 2017

Judwaa 2 led among the Hindi films showing in North America during the weekend of September 29-October 1, 2017. According to Rentrak figures supplied to Bollywood Hungama, Judwaa 2 opened in 213 theaters, earning $630,015 ($2,958 average). Box Office Mojo reports the movie as opening 192 theaters, improving Judwaa 2‘s per-theater average to $3,281.

Though Judwaa 2 posted the ninth best opening weekend gross of 2017, it opened in the sixth highest number of theaters and only had the thirteenth best opening weekend average for the year. Judwaa 2 also earned $200,000 less than star Varun Dhawan’s Badrinath Ki Dulhania did earlier this year, despite the fact that BKD opened in 20% fewer theaters (156, according to Box Office Mojo).

Another interesting aspect of Judwaa 2‘s performance over the weekend is its disproportionate popularity in Canada versus the United States. A full 20% of the film’s gross earnings ($127,042) came from Canada, which accounted for just 11% of the total number of theaters. But this isn’t the only recent release faring much better north of the border than south. Bhoomi earned a total of $5,597 from 14 theaters ($400 average) in its second weekend of release — $4,776 from Canada’s seven theaters and $821 from the US’s seven theaters. The total contributions from each country to date are roughly equal — $36,463 from the US and $33,906 from Canada — despite the fact that the movie opened in nearly three times as many theaters in the US (32) than Canada (11).

Like Bhoomi, all of the other Hindi titles still showing in North America posted weekend earnings of less than $10,000. Here’s how they fared:

  • Simran: Week 3; $7,431 from ten theaters; $743 average; $401,626 total
  • Bareilly Ki Barfi: Week 7; $5,279 from four theaters; $1,320 average; $564,291 total
  • Shubh Mangal Saavdhan: Week 5; $4,610 from six theaters; $768 average; $629,427 total
  • Lipstick Under My Burkha: Week 4; $1,526 from one theater; $46,948 total
  • Haseena Parkar: Week 2; $254 from three theaters; $85 average; $2,305 total
  • Toilet — Ek Prem Katha: Week 8; $220 from two theaters; $110 average; $1,907,300 total
  • Lucknow Central: Week 3; $148 from two theaters; $74 average; $144,874 total

Sources: Box Office Mojo and Rentrak, via Bollywood Hungama

Bollywood Box Office: September 22-24, 2017

Neither of the new Hindi films to open in North America made a mark at the box office during the weekend of September 22-24, 2017. The Sanjay Dutt-Aditi Rao Hydari thriller Bhoomi fared the better of the two, earning $48,122 from 43 theaters ($1,119 average) — a low-key performance typical of a movie released in so few theaters.

The weekend’s other new release — Haseena Parkar — is an absolute mystery to me. Why in the world would you open a Hindi film with a recognizable star like Shraddha Kapoor in just five North American theaters? It’s like someone wanted the film to flop, and flop it did. It earned $587 from two theaters in the United States and $714 from three Canadian theaters. That’s a grand total of $1,301 and an average of $260 per theater. Regardless of the actual quality of the movie, it’s going to be remembered as a disaster, ranking at the bottom of the year-end box office list below even MSG Lion Heart 2.

What sucks is that Haseena Parkar is Shraddha Kapoor’s first solo star vehicle, and its failure here will affect how her future projects are perceived by potential producers and investors. They can point to Haseena Parkar as evidence that she’s not bankable internationally, lowering her market value. I’m not even a huge Shraddha Kapoor fan, but actresses in India get so few chances to shine outside of the reflected glow of male stars, and this totally predictable tank job will only further limit her opportunities (and reinforce the stereotype that actresses aren’t moneymakers, thus potentially hurting the prospects of her female peers).

In other news, Shubh Mangal Saavdhan continues to perform well, from what I can tell. Distributor Eros stopped reporting numbers to Box Office Mojo, and Bollywood Hungama’s Rentrak data is still missing information from Canada. Bollywood Hungama reports earnings of $21,229 from 20 US theaters ($1,061 average). I’m not sure what the movie’s real total is, but at a minimum Shubh Mangal Saavdhan has earned around $650,656 ($21,229 plus last weekend‘s total of $629,427).

Fun fact: Poster Boys has earned more in Canada ($50,469) than the US ($44,232), despite having opened three weeks ago in 18 theaters in Canada versus 32 theater in the US. Over the weekend, it added another $245 from two theaters ($123 average), bringing its combined total to $94,701.

Other Hindi movies still showing in North American theaters:

  • Simran: Week 2; $72,249 from 74 theaters; $976 average; $372,328 total
  • Lucknow Central: Week 2; $19,503 from 28 theaters; $697 average; $141,604 total
  • Bareilly Ki Barfi: Week 6; $7,607 from five theaters; $1,521 average; $556,982 total
  • Lipstick Under My Burkha: Week 3; $3,130 from four theaters; $783 average; $44,431 total
  • Toilet — Ek Prem Katha: Week 7; $1,027 from two theaters; $514 average; $1,869,724 total
  • Daddy: Week 3; $84 from one theater; $31,784 total

Sources: Box Office Mojo and Rentrak, via Bollywood Hungama