Shakuntala Devi – A story of a fiercely feminist ahead of her time who defied all yardsticks of feudality with exemplary confirmatory.
Biography of India’s Human-Computer Shakuntala Devi
An unschooled extraordinary maths prodigy. Who solved complex mathematical problems correctly within seconds has been narrated from the perspective of a mother-daughter relationship fraught with pain, resentment due to her indispensable global fame who later is seen reconciling with her mother.
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As Vidya Balan in one of her interviews said,
Shakuntala Devi wanted it all and in a dire attempt to put up onscreen all of this. The screenplay by Anu Menon and Nayanika Mahtani has tottered in fragments often. Ishita Moitra as the dialogue writer manages to balance out the script. Kudos to the costume, make-up, and hair department for dressing Vidya Balan vividly.
Vidya Balan glues it all together with conviction playing a maths wizard in pigtails and sarees, making witty remarks with ease of normality. She owns up the role of stepping in the shoes of the character.
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But for a biopic of a woman who had a rich varied life. This can become a problem for the storyteller to squeeze out all the chapters of her life. Be it her anger of being used as a source of income from a young age and not being schooled. Because of that or being one of the first woman mathematicians of her age to her love affairs with men. And numbers and ultimately writing a book on “The World Of Homosexuals” in that era.
What I liked ironically about the movie is the portrayal of the emotional turmoil that comes, when you don’t want to give up on your passion as a woman, when society consistently reminds you of your role as a mother and wife.
And that’s where her relationship with her daughter Anupama Banerjee fleshes out nonchalantly with brilliance. A fine directorial melodrama of a famous mathematician, astrologer, and writer.
Watch this out with your parents who have actually lived in a non-digital era. They would love it, as would you for her story will win your heart as her number won the world for her.
This article is written by Saloni Sharma.
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