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Sunny Leone in the documentary Mostly Sunny.

2 out of 4 stars

Title
Mostly Sunny
Directed by
Dilip Mehta
Starring
Sunny Leone
Genre
Documentary
Classification
18A
Country
Canada
Language
English
Year
2016

Those who know Sunny Leone feel as though they know her intimately.

With more than 40 titles to her name, the Sarnia-born Leone made her debut in the adult film industry in California (and won Penthouse Pet of the Year in 2003) before making recent moves for the mainstream. In Mostly Sunny, photojournalist and director Dilip Mehta has dedicated his latest feature film to documenting the desi star's foray into the flush Bollywood scene and the many raised eyebrows that stare her down as she tries to cross over.

Mehta takes his audience behind the curtain of Leone's strategic brand-building – from commercials, to private events, to film sets – yet rarely ever delves deeper than the veneer of her glossy celebrity. The one exception is a trip home to Sarnia where she speaks candidly about grieving her parents and being shunned by the Sikh Punjabi community for her choice of work.

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Although Mehta's documentary begins to consider the vexed overlap of contemporary sex work, women's rights, and celebrity embodied by his subject, the film ultimately stalls – caught mesmerized by the glittering surface.

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