Sunny Gill is a ten year old who does not have a sense of smell. By an accident in a old lab at school, two chemicals mix magically and he sneezes out an enormous ball of snot which clears his nose. So much so that now he can sniff out all kinds of things, from what kids had for dinner to finding stolen cars. Alas, the execution is so awful, you’d best be advised to turn up your nose at the film.
The film starts with what earns it’s one whole star: a fabulous montage of food preparation and bottling of Indian Pickles, Punjabi granny making Aloo Parathas… As the butter melts on the stuffed parathas, you begin to feel hungry and the popcorn in your hand ceases to offer you any comfort. Brilliant work by the cameraperson.
The little boy Sunny Gill (Khushmeet Gill in real life) comes from the family that makes pickles and this great food we see in the first few minutes of the film. But his granny and dad and sister are unhappy because Sunny does not know the joys of smell. He earns the half star for making so much effort.
If the film is for kids, then parents would not want to show grown ups slap each other. The grown ups show no respect for the old watchman of the building who is shown to be sleeping on the job. The teachers are shown to be caricatures and one teacher even steals from another. Strange role models to present to kids, isn’t it? And showing car thieves who tie up Sunny while they drink and sleep it off is good? Should a child know why and how his sister’s mouth smells like her boyfriend? Why is it good to show grown ups at a meeting not ready to do anything, who jump at the chance of eating free food?
This could have been a very sweet Enid Blyton style who-dun-it with kids in the hood figuring out who stole the car. The children rigging up a cctv system with old phone cameras is a great idea, but not believable. And finally, Sunny does not sniff out the culprit, he watches the culprit ready to steal another car on the cctv system…
The film wants to be the Ukrainian television show Sniffer, where a detective solves cases because of his keen sense of smell, but fails. You come away remembering the visual of young Sunny Gill sneezing out a gigantic ball of snot. Puts you off. Not funny at all.
(This review appears on nowrunning dot com)