By Abhigna Ghosh
Director: Ram Kamal Mukherjee
Cast : Esha Deol Takhtani, Rajveer Ankur Singh, Barbie Sharma, Nick Sharma
Rating : 3.5/5
From carrying a child in the womb for 9 months to supporting them till her last breath, a mother sacrifices everything for the well-being of her kids. Regardless of caste, religion, culture, social strata, and everything that divides our country, there is one common thing that unites every mother and that’s the love she gives to her child and the compromises she makes. The story of Ek Duaaa, directed by Ram Kamal Mukherjee and backed by Bharat Esha Films and Assorted Motion pictures, unfolds on similar lines.
Revolving around the struggle of a woman to give her daughter all the love and appreciation she deserves in this unfair world, this movie will undoubtedly strike a chord with every mother and every woman out there.
The film opens with Esha Deol Takhtani as Abida and Barbie Sharma as her daughter Duaa in a bustling market. Right from the first scene, we can trace their family’s rank on the social strata ladder. It’s well established that they are not financially stable and do not come from a background of highly educated ancestors. This is a rather important point because the events that follow next are in co-relation with their family status.
Throughout the movie, we get to see how she shields her daughter from the brutalities of the world. There was considerable discrimination between the two kids, as Abida’s mother-in-law Rihana and husband Sulemaan show their affinity towards the boy child, while little Duaaa keeps craving for love. Abida’s mother-in-law even pressurizes her to have another boy to help bring in more wages and uphold the family name.
Duaa only had her mother in the entire world to look out for her. Whether it is always prioritizing her needs and happiness even when the rest of the family ignores her or the iconic scene where her mother buys a gift for Eid when her father doesn’t, each scene will leave you speechless. As a mother, Abida always kept her little girl in her arms and would go to the end of the world just to make her daughter happy.
Starring Esha Deol Takhtani, Rajveer Ankur Singh, and Barbie Sharma in pivotal roles, the film takes you on an emotional rollercoaster and confronts you with the bitter realities of society.
The movie upholds a very relevant social issue and shows how even to this date, women and men aren’t treated equally. The mistreatment of the so-called weaker sex starts right at birth. From despising a girl child to going to the extent of ignoring their existence, everything that the bearers of the human race are been subjected to is beautifully highlighted in the movie.
When Esha beautifully says “Ye Allah ki den hai, iske bare me faisla karne wale hum kon hote hai” every mother felt that. This line itself is a slap on the face of all those people who have the audacity to kill a child in the womb or mistreat them their entire life just because she is a girl.
But among all these finer details, the struggle of Abida outshines everything else. It shows the struggle of an everyday woman from not-so-privileged sections of society. These women can neither fight back nor leave, all that they can do is stand as a shield between their child and the merciless world. In this movie, Abida was a shield to Duaa and by the end, she was damaged, hurt, and wounded beyond repair.
Esha Deol Takhtani did a brilliant job as Abida, the wife of a taxi driver. Starting from her expressions to her body language, she realistically nails the role of a wife of a poor taxi driver, making her blend into the character seamlessly. Her fights for her daughter, keeping up with all her duties and winning little battles over her mother-in-law perfectly portray a homemaker from a financially weaker part of the society.
The same goes for Rajveer Ankur Singh who flawlessly sinks into the character of a taxi driver. His life is torn between struggling to make ends meet and the constant bickering between his wife and mother back home. He is portrayed as a good man who is trying to please everyone who is important in his life and put a smile on their face. But his daily hard work overshadows his conscience and he even takes the wrong path to avoid clashing opinions with his mother.
Barbie Sharma too put up a pretty convincing performance. The message that she is only loved by her mother and ignored by the rest of the family was clearly evident in her expressions and acting.
Much of the credit to this goes to the skillful direction by Ram Kamal Mukherjee who very delicately drew us into the world of Abida and her husband Sulemaan. Whether it is the set design or the carefully stitched cutaways to make the audience aware of the surroundings, the fine detail of every scene has been well catered to by him. With the hard-hitting dialogues and seamless narration, Ram Kamal Mukherjee gracefully intertwined every aspect of the movie to hike its cinematic brilliance.
The euphonious soundtracks and the soul-stirring recitation by Abhishek Bachchan at the end of the movie further added to its brilliance.
Other members of the cast in supporting roles such as Abida’s son, her mother-in-law, and the neighbor also played their part with sheer perfection.
It takes individual contributions from various people and units to make a film this brilliant. And for Ek Duaa, all these individual units were in perfect sync and mutual harmony.
The movie ends on a rather interesting note as a last-minute revelation turns all the tables. The unbelievable twist will pierce right into your heart and churn it with emotions.
Keeping the rest under the wraps, all that we can say for now is Ek Duaaa is a movie you will thank yourself for watching. Capturing emotions of a lifetime in 44 minutes, it’s a perfect weekend binge if you are ready to lose yourself. Just make sure you sit with a tissue box because the movie is bound to make even the hardest of hearts melt by the end.