Cast: Kalki Koechlin, Sumeet Vyas
Director: Rakhi Sandilya
Running Time: 1hr 46 mins
Stars: 3 Stars
“An unplanned pregnancy brings into a couple’s life more than what they accounted for”
Sahana (Kalki) and Karan (Sumeet) are an urban couple in Mumbai, whose careers are their lifeline. They have EMIs and bills to pay and like any other new age couple in the city of dreams they work hard and party hard.
Sahana’s boss swears by her for punches she pulls in at work and she’s even voted ‘Employee of the Year.’
But their set lifestyle takes a sudden turn when Sahana finds out she is pregnant. She panics, as she is pretty sure this is not what she wants – given that her career is her first priority. The couple’s tussle as they try to decide whether or not to go in for this unplanned pregnancy is handled with maturity and tenderness. But just as we are getting involved in the characters stories and emotions, there is a sudden jump in the storyline. And when that happens a few more times in the narrative, it leaves one asking for a better-handled screenplay on the whole.
But Ribbon does talk about a pertinent topic – a couple’s struggle as they try to make sense of their new responsibilities, parenthood and mounting expenses. Kalki pulls off a commendable performance as someone who strives against all odds to balance both – work and motherhood. She puts up with gender discrimination at work once back from maternity leave, struggles with nanny issues, doesn’t find many takers ready to offer her a new position given that she is just taken a three month break from work.
Ribbon does go where not many Bollywood films have before. You actually see the uncomfortable realities of a pregnant lady in advanced pregnancy – when it’s all about feeling bloated and itchy. Likewise for many other upheavals that working parents go through while trying to go along with the big city life – job losses, loans, finding the right crèche, trying to actually find time together as a family.
And then comes a dark twist in Suhana and Karan’s life, which they had not accounted for or even fathomed.
Ribbon has its heart in the right place and is earnest in its realistic storytelling – both Kalki and Sumeet Vyas put in evocative performances worth applauding. Sumeet as Karan is the emotional foil to Kalki’s charged up character. His restrained performance as the man who is trying his best to what is right for his family and yet desperately finds himself at a loss at times is perfect.
But Ribbon’s biggest flaw is that its storytelling is disjointed. At some point in the second half it begins to feel like one is watching ‘part 2’ of the film. Also, the conversations are suddenly almost all in English adding to the disconnected feel. And it doesn’t help that it ends on a note that feels incomplete. While Ribbon is mostly let down by it’s pace and length, watch it once to savor some good performances and it’s take on modern relationships and parenting.