Mumbai, 22 May 2021 21:31 IST
Starring Supriya Pilgaonkar, Shriya Pilgaonkar and Shiv Pandit, the short film is a sensible slice-of-life comedy.
A book is not to be judged by its cover. Similarly, a film is not to be judged by its title. Writer-director Navjot Gulati’s Jai Mata Di is anything but a devotional film. Yet, the film also justifies its title.
Jai Mata Di is a comical slice-of-life saga revolving around a couple Ananya Pandey (Shriya Pilgaonkar) and Suraj Shetty (Shiv Pandit) who are in search of a rented house in Mumbai to start a live-in relationship. However, as is the case in the city, housing societies are unwilling to let out apartments to unmarried couples.
To solve the problem, Ananya and Suraj lie to a housing society chairman that they are siblings and bring in an older woman (Supriya Pilgaonkar) to pose as their mother from Kanpur.
Ananya and Suraj also have issues in their relationship. The biggest is that Ananya supports the government. Hence, she is known as a ‘nationalist’. Suraj’s political ideology is the opposite, so he is called an ‘anti-national’.
Jai Mata Di is full of situational and sensible humour. But what makes the film interesting is the continuous doses of surprise it delivers, that too in a subtle manner. For example, the audience initially thinks the couple is married only to be proved wrong. Such surprises continue till the final revelation which makes you laugh and also think.
The film has smartly woven a number of contemporary issues into the narrative and none of them looks out of place. These include the changing definition of relationships, how differences in political ideology are creating a divide among people, the resistance of older generations to modern ways of thinking and, lastly, the changes in society that are giving rise to novel professions.
The performances play a big part in Jai Mata Di's impact. Shriya Pilgaonkar and Shiv Pandit are natural as a modern couple. Saanand Verma and Manu Rishi are hilarious. But it is Supriya Pilgaonkar who takes the cake with her phenomenal show. Of course, she plays the most interesting character in the film.
Jai Mata Di is available on YouTube on the Terribly Tiny Tales channel. Watch the film here.
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