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|October 23, 1999||
Madness, confusion, chaos! Sounds familiar? Of course, this is what is an average Hindi film is all about. But wait, if you thought you had already seen the worst, you are sadly mistaken. For Saawan Kumar's Mother actually manages to touch an all time new low.
In the making for a couple of years, the film was previously titled Mother '98. But its release was postponed due to several controversies that plagued the film. For one, the Censor Board objected to the song, Biwi to cheez sajawat ki, so it has now been revised to Biwi to ghar ki rani hai. Besides, distributors were wary of touching a project that starred yesteryear actors.
The story involves a single parent, Asha Britannia (Rekha), who lives in Mauritius and is highly respected there. She claims to be the wife of a non-existent Britannia. But no one is aware of the fact that she herself does not know who the father of her daughter Jia (Sanobar Kabir) is.
Why? Well, Asha's father was suffering from cancer and the required medical treatment cost an astronomical amount. So, as the dutiful Hindi film daughter, she earned the money by spending a night with a man. But, since cancer treatments tend to be rather expensive, she spends three different nights with three different men in a span of 10 days.
In retrospect, the deal turns out to rather expensive for the three men, Sunil Malik, Amar Khanna and Kumar Sinha (Jeetendra, Rakesh Roshan and Randhir Kapoor respectively), who have been sending Asha child support money for 19 years. Then, at the same time, they decide to visit Asha and Jia, and pandemonium previals in Mauritius.
So Asha shuttles between her trio of aging lovers; her skimpily dressed daughter prances around with a dud, oops, dude called Raj (Rahat Khan). And the trio's wives, who meet Asha at a beauty parlour, are convinced she deserves the greatest mother award. To which you add know-all Sunder Das (Mushtaq Khan), who wants to spoil things between Raj and Jia.
Then, everyone finds out that they have been happily deceived by Asha all these years. And all hell breaks loose... We'd like to tell you the ending and save you a trip to the theatre, but that wouldn't be ethical, would it?
All we can say is, Saawan Kumar's idea of a woman-oriented subject reflects the industry's mentality when it comes to women. His worst crime is that he uses the concept of an 'independent woman' to titillate. And he exploits a pure relationship like motherhood in such a disgusting fashion that it makes Mother the worst movie ever made in my book. Even the attempt at comedy cannot retrieve the film. All it does is irritate and bore you.
Of all the actors in the film, I would rate Rekha as the worst. I wonder what made an actress of her calibre accept this role. Her hairdos are atrocious, her clothes even worse. And it is quite depressing to see her prancing around in frocks!! Jeetendra, Randhir Kapoor and Rakesh Roshan, on the other hand, are reasonably decent in their respective roles.
Newcomers Sanobar Kabir and Rahat Khan are eminently forgettable. They have neither the talent nor the screen presence to succeed in today's highly competitive Bollywood. The music, by Dilip and Sameer Sen is nothing to write home about. In fact, if one is forced to choose a saving grace, it would be the beautiful locales in Mauritius.
At the end of the film, one only comes out humming 'Murder, murder.'
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