To call Hunterrr a sex comedy would be doing it disservice. Primarily about an incorrigible sex addict, Harshvardhan Kulkarni’s debut film has a lot more to it, says Aniruddha Guha in his Dedh Minute Review.
Mandar Ponkshe is in his mid-thirties and on the cusp of getting married to Trupti. The film starts in 2015 and goes back to 1989, when a pre-teen Mandar discovers his sexuality. Hunterrr flips back and forth, taking you through the many stages in Mandar’s life, where several things change but his love for sex remains constant. The big question is: Can a man like that ever settle down with one woman?
In last year’s Hasee Toh Phasee, the one thing that stood out was writer Harshvardhan Kulkarni’s witty one-liners. In his directorial debut, Kulkarni shows again that he’s great with dialogues and fleshing out rounded characters. He successfully creates an atmosphere conducive to his story, capturing little moments that stay with you long after. He gets great performances out from all his actors – from the lead stars right down to those that appear in bit roles.
The thing that works against the film is that it rests on a weak plot, which would not have been a problem if the screenplay didn’t seem a little disjointed in the middle. The plot needed to have the back-and-forth treatment, but it’s not always seamless. Also, the film seems longer than its 140 minutes runtime. The bits about Mandar’s childhood, from watching porn films at sex parlours to his first brush with the opposite sex, are Hunterrr’s best, most honest bits, and the rest of the film is trying to catch up.
Every actor excels, but Sagar Deshmukh as Mandar’s cousin and Vedant Muchandi as young Mandar are marvelous. Radhika Apte, who stood out among a strong ensemble in Badlapur, delivers another riveting performance. She brings every scene she’s in alive.
Gulshan Devaiah, ever dependable, gets a part his talent deserves, and nails it. Mandar comes across as confused, creepy, charming, foolish, and Devaiah balances the character’s many traits with expert ease.
Hunterrr is extremely funny in parts, and heartwarming in others, but a more compact narrative would have done it a world of good. Rating: 3/5.