Another rendition of Modern Love, Modern Love Hyderbad, releases after Mumbai. And even though it's not as good as Mumbai, it makes for a sweet and cherishable watch.
As a genre, adaptations usually are rather dicey, especially when they're from English to Hindi. But if Modern Love Mumbai adapted from Modern Love is any proof, adaptations made by keeping the core and essence intact make for a lovely watch. While Modern Love is an anthology adapted from a series of real love stories in The New York Times column, its stories are so human that they become universal in nature. And working on the same lines, Modern Love Hyderabad works! There's a sentence in the trailer that says 'Love has the power to charm, excite, hurt but most of all to heal' and the series holds true to this statement thoroughly through its six stories. The love throughout the series, in all its shades, looks modern yet works the same as traditional love.
The anthology's first story is 'My unlikely pandemic dream partner' featuring Revathy and Nithya Menen as estranged mother and daughter who reconnect and rekindle their bond over a broken knee, lockdown, and delicious Hyderabadi home-cooked food! Then comes 'Fuzzy, purple and full of thorns' featuring Aadhi Pinisetty and Ritu Varma which deals with the trials and tribulations of a modern couple in a live-in relationship while balancing their exes. Followed by 'Why did she leave me there…?' featuring Suhasini Maniratnam and Naresh Agastya as grandmother and grandson dealing with the burden and struggles of being poor and the art of letting go for the sake of love.
'What clown wrote this script!' features Abijeet Duddala and Malavika Nair who juggle between attraction towards someone and their passion as professionals while balancing both personal and professional life. 'About that rustle in the bushes' features Ulka Gupta and Naresh and is a story of a doting overprotective father. He follows and spies on his daughter as she goes on different dates. And the last one, ' Finding your penguin' featuring Komalee Prasad, is a story of a confused, broken, lost girl in love who doesn't understand it but is still aimlessly searching for it while applying weird logic.
Each story brings something meaningful, but the best ones are 'My unlikely pandemic dream partner', and 'Why did she leave me there…?'. And while 'Fuzzy, purple and full of thorns', 'What clown wrote this script!', and 'About that rustle in the bushes' work in their own way even though not effectively but still it is 'Finding your penguin' that is the least effective of all.
The first three films directed by Nagesh Kukunoor have a certain similarity and linearity to them in terms of filmmaking given the fact that they have been helmed by the same person and they're the best of the lot. 'My unlikely pandemic dream partner', and 'Why did she leave me there…?' are both stories that explore the lovely, beautiful but full of struggles relationship between a young individual and their guardian. They're both heartwarming stories that will leave you with tears and your heart filled while teaching you the art of letting go for the good of someone and how time and love literally heal all wounds.
While Kukunoor's 'Fuzzy, purple and full of thorns', and 'What clown wrote this script!' by Uday Gurrala focus on the trials and tribulations of modern young romance that balances personal and professional lives, they will make you laugh and fall in love but more importantly will make you re-think modern-day romance. Even though films hold a valid point of over-obsession running relationships and professional passion interfering with it, the storytelling didn't put the point forth effectively.
In 'About that rustle in the bushes' by Devika Bahudhanam, the overprotectiveness of a father coming in the ways of a daughter who is on the cusp of modernity and tradition isn't something we haven't seen before but to give it an angle of guilt and the end of the film works towards an otherwise non-working film. 'Finding your penguin' by Venkatesh Maha is a film that's beyond understanding and it doesn't work at all. Even though it puts a woman's sexual exploration and womanhood to its centrality, the lame logic angle which could be funny for some definitely doesn't work in favor of the film.
In short, Modern Love Hyderabad is a heartwarming mini-series to watch with one problem - it's not centric to Hyderabad. Modern Love Mumbai's stories were universal in nature but were rooted in the city and felt like a love letter to the city and the same can't be said about this one. The only film that gives you a feel of Hyderabad is 'My unlikely pandemic dream partner'. Yet even with its stories that could probably belong from anywhere, it makes for a feel-good watch, and who doesn't want those!
Also Read: What feels like a love letter to the city, Amazon Prime’s Modern Love Mumbai celebrates all shades of love
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