By Sneha Jaiswal (Twitter | Instagram)

‘Double XL’ narrates the tale of two strangers bonding over their crushed ambitions and crippling body image issues shared during simultaneous breakdowns in a public washroom. Directed by Satram Ramani, the 2022 movie is a comedy about body-shaming and absurd beauty standards, but ironically, tries to pack in too much. Regardless, Huma Qureshi and Sonakshi Sinha make an entertaining duo and both their characters are driven, motivated, sassy and sweet.

Huma is Meerut girl Rajshri Trivedi, who dreams of becoming a sports presenter but is rejected for an important job because she is fat; while Sonakshi plays Saira Khanna, an aspiring fashion designer who is ridiculed for her weight and catches her model-boyfriend cheating on her just days before they were set to fly to London for an important shoot. The two women team up to shoot Saira’s designs and hope it would help them with their respective career goals.

This could’ve been a simple buddy comedy about two independent women lifting each other up, but the makers foist double romantic sub-plots on the viewers and Huma and Sonakshi’s chemistry is far superior to the men who play their romantic interests. Zaheer Iqbal plays Saira’s Line producer Zorawar in London, a character who is supposed to be charmingly impish, but the actor just didn’t fit the bill. Also, for a 2022 film, ‘Double XL’ is slightly out of touch with reality about notions surrounding ‘fat’ women. For example, Rajshri goes for an interview and is surrounded by skinny candidates dressed in suits while she, in turn, is shown as a jhola-toting, dressed down journo. As a journalist myself, I can attest to the fact that Rajshri’s attire is likely to be more common in any newsroom versus snappy-suit wearing folks.

With a two-hour runtime, ‘Double XL’ is long drawn, with two song-dance numbers that should’ve been chopped. While some of the banter between the characters are witty and fun, a lot of the script is soppy and sounds like it was written for a stage play. Huma and Sona make the hair-brained script work with their endearing performances and dialogue delivery.

It’s a 5/10 from me. Stream it on Netflix.

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