The power this film would have if there was a bit more care in its approach.
With a lack of films on female sexuality, Thank You for Coming feels refreshing. Kanika Kapoor seeks out sexual fulfillment as much as she seeks an emotional connection, due to the fairytale promises given to many women from girlhood. She hopes for both, knowing that if she doesn’t go through it the right way, she’ll be looked down upon the same way her single mother was. The sex comedy is reminiscent of Mamma Mia, but instead of a child figuring out who of her potential three dads is hers through ABBA songs, it’s Kanika figuring out who from her past and present lovers gave her an orgasm, with excellent, though slightly disconnected tracks. The playful approach is fun and exciting, but this approach stops halfway through, and certain plot aspects and the choice of a male director detracts from the feminist, sex-positive message it wants to portray.
Sexual pleasure in women isn’t frequently portrayed in film. For the longest time, the media was unwilling to discuss it, either pushing the topic to the side, or at worst, demonizing it all together. The struggles of Kanika Kapoor in Thank You for Coming is familiar, especially as it’s hard to toe the line between acceptable and unacceptable in women seeking their own pleasure, especially with society’s conflicting attitudes towards sex. However, the way she finally achieves orgasm is without her sober consent and it’s played off as a good thing. At the start, without any knowledge of what happened last night, they never really address the real possibility that she was raped– and this makes it hard to engage with the mystery of who the mysterious lover was. Thank You for Coming has a playful, Mamma Mia-esque approach that’s fairly entertaining, but it needed to work with sensitivity and care that could have been possible with a woman’s perspective.