Award-winning film, The Good Wife, questions the role of women in society
It's won 10 awards and it was the official selection at 16 film festivals like the Oaxaca Film Festival in Mexico, Chicago Southland International Film Festival in the US and Continental Film Festival in Canada. The Good Wife, a short film produced by Bengaluru-based Red Polka Productions has gotten people talking.
Just another day
The film captures a day in the life of a homemaker. However, the underlying theme goes deeper than what is evident. Set in Kolkata in 1992, the narrative attempts to present a social commentary on how the role of wives in society is confined to the four walls of their home.
Producer Anshulika Kapoor who also plays the wife, says, “The premise of the film is how nothing has changed in the lives of Indian women, specifically homemakers in the last 25 years. It isn’t a direct commentary on patriarchy but we have attempted to show how women are conditioned to think that the outside world and its happenings don’t matter to them.”
The film is narrated with the backdrop of the 1992 communal riots, post the Babri Masjid demolition. The nuanced script makes one ponder over the deep-rooted beliefs in our society. Although the protagonist is aware of the riots happening outside her house, her only concern is to be a ‘good wife.’
It’s the protagonist’s wedding anniversary, and she casually steps out to buy her husband’s favourite fish. She comes back home and continues with her daily routine, while she awaits her husband’s return from another city.
Even when her maid, who comes late for work, says there are riots in the city, the wife ignores her saying it’s her anniversary and that she needs to be ready before her husband is back home. “The narrative raises questions like ‘Is marriage the ultimate goal for a woman?’, ‘Will society change it?’ and ‘Are we even thinking about change?’” offers Anshulika.
Though the film subtly poses these questions to the audience, on the face of it, it’s also a thriller, says the producer. Since it isn’t a big budget project, the riots have been recreated using only sounds, and the film has been extensively shot at actual locations in West Bengal. “We have played a lot with radio and loud speaker announcements to create a riot-like impact. We shot in Bolpur in Shantiniketan and in parts of West Bengal that still look vintage,” explains Anshulika. Written and directed by Prataya Saha, The Good Wife will be screened in Mumbai, before travelling to Delhi.