DeAr Movie Review: A messy relationship drama that lacks depth in writing

DeAr Movie Review: A messy relationship drama that lacks depth in writing

Despite a brilliant premise in hand where multiple issues could be addressed, the film completely wastes this opportunity
DeAr(2.5 / 5)

As an adult, all of the childhood punishments become instant life goals. Everything from eating healthy, to heading to bed early, becomes an activity we work hard to incorporate into our daily lives. GV Prakash's Arjun is one such adult who safeguards his eight-hour sleep like a baby and he is a light sleeper who wakes up even when a pin drops. Aishwarya Rajesh's Deepika is the exact opposite. They get married, move in together, and all hell breaks loose.

When the trailer of DeAr revealed that the film is about how chronic snoring creates a rift between newlyweds, there were instant comparisons with Manikandan’s Good Night, which was released last year. The difference here is that it is the wife who snores. Despite a brilliant premise in hand where multiple issues could be addressed, the film completely wastes this opportunity. Instead, we are given a film that lacks focus and holds onto too many emotions rather than exploring the central theme.

Cast: GV Prakash, Aishwarya Rajesh, Kaali Venkat, Thalaivasal Vijay, Ilavarasu, Rohini, Nandhini

Director: Anand Ravichandran

While the film focuses on a wife who snores, we hope that the makers don't lean too much on tired old ‘wife jokes’. While that is kept away for most of the film, towards the end, the makers needlessly place a song titled ‘Thalavali’. Here, Arjun sits at a bar with Deepika and tells a person who is having a drink in front of him, “Wife naale thalavali dhaan”. In another instance, Arjun points out that if it is okay for women to file a divorce based on a man’s baldness, he too can file a case because his wife has snoring issues. He then goes on to call them ‘fake feminists’. The meaning of feminism and its rights gets diluted in all of these conversations. Then another one drops — Badava Gopi as a lawyer says the judge is a feminist because she calls her husband ‘Kumari’ instead of Kumar. Sadly, most of the other jokes don’t land either.

At its outset, the film tries to explain how it is important that one remains patient in a marriage while being amenable to compromises. While it may sound like the perfect solution, we hardly see the duo taking steps to arrive there apart from a failed attempt at charting a sleeping schedule. Before they reach a compromise, Arjun rushes to file a divorce. Even when it is established that snoring is not a ‘problem’, Deepika apologises to Arjun repeatedly for causing chaos in his life when she has done nothing wrong from her side. Also, we never know who Deepika is apart from a few hints about her working in Arjun’s brother’s company. We know in detail about Arjun’s job as a journalist but Deepika's side of her life is only present in patches.

However, I was quite surprised and loved Ilavarasu’s performance as Rangarajan. As a doting father to Deepika, he acts as the balance for his family, supporting her in her views and decisions. Even during a crucial moment, he takes her side and doesn’t let anyone stop her.

DeAr would have worked a cut above average if it had placed the spotlight on Deepika and Arjun instead of taking the rocky road to explore the others in the story. We get an arc on Saravanan (Kaali Venkat), how he is the patriarch in the family and how he treats his wife like a servant and another arc about Lakshmi (Rohini)’s role as a single mother and her yearning to reunite with her husband. By then, the snoring issue is long lost and forgotten, and the story refuses to move an inch after that, just like Deepika when Arjun tries to wake her up.

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