Love Sonia is all about the sex trade and human trafficking. It’s a story which deals with the daughters of a debt-ridden farmer, who are sold and what happens in their lives post that.
Adil Hussain plays the burdened farmer with barren fields and two teenaged daughters. The fair and frail older child, Preeti (Riya Sisodia), is sold off to the local landlord and moneylender, Dada Thakur (Anupam Kher), while the younger, stronger girl Sonia (Mrunal Thakur) is held back to help in the arid fields.
Preeti is placed in the care of a handler Anjali (Sai Tamhankar) who whisks her off to Mumbai where she is forced into prostitution. As days pass by, Sonia starts to miss her sister and starts to look for her.
Sonia runs away from home straight to Dada Thakur and she is soon transported to Mumbai, where she meets brothel owner Faizal (Manoj Bajpayee) and the so-called caretaker of the brothel, Madhuri (Richa Chadha). Both Faizal and Madhuri promise Sonia that they would help her find Preeti.
From here on we get to see everything from sex to drugs, violence to exploitation, one gets to know it all. We even get to meet sex worker Rashmi (Freida Pinto) as well as a kind social worker Manish (Rajkummar Rao). Eventually, we also get to meet Demi Moore and Mark Duplass, who make incidental cameos.
The most harrowing plot point is the way in which international rings operate to transport women across the world for the pleasure of men willing to pay a hefty price. Women are locked into cargo containers, entrapped, as they sail for weeks till they dock at Hong Kong or even North America.
Director Tabrez Noorani has very carefully crafted this film and has paid a lot of attention to detailing, and that’s the reason the film looks very real and stark.
The film is perfectly cast and everyone has played their parts with a lot of sincerity. The film presents the facts as it is and that’s why it’s very disturbing and will keep haunting you even after you are out of the theatre.
Love Sonia is a film that will find a lot of critical appreciation but may not be able to garner a sizable footfall.
All in all, Love Sonia is disturbing, haunting and a well-crafted film. Watch it, but beware cause you will come out feeling very heavy.
Rating: Two And A Half