GANGOOBAI: Sentimental portrayal of the desires of a maid

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The National Film Development Corporation (NFDC) has after being in hiatus for some time taken upon itself to emerge as the messiah of the new breed of filmmakers so that they can continue to experiment with new ideas and also make cinematic viewing an enchanting experience. Their latest offering GANGOOBAI is one such addition to the other cinema by NFDC.

Being directed by Priya Krishnaswamy, GANGOOBAI could be probably the first film which has been shot in such exquisite details in the apunka hill station of Mumbai, Matheran, and indeed has the potential to rekindle the interest of those outside Mumbai to savor the old world charm of this place.

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GANGOOBAI as the name suggests is the story of an old lady, the role enacted by Sarita Joshi, for whom this must be the first film in her long acting career to enact such an important role. GANGOOBAI in a way also underlines the important role the ‘bais’ or the maids play in the social set up of Mumbai and have been the major catalytic factor in giving economic impetus to Mumbai, as it is owing to the presence of these ‘bais’ that even ladies of the family go out to work.

GANGOOBAI is aspiration and only an NFDC could have funded it, as it is a sentimental portrayal of the desires of a maid to own a particular variety of saree, and how she channelizes her resources to turn her dreams into reality.


GANGOOBAI also underlines the latent desire of the women in India of aspirations that they continue to have and nurture about different varieties of sarees and how they want to possess them. In the present times when the sarees have gone out of vogue of the fashion lexicon of Hindi cinema, making a film where the content is focused on aspiration to have a particular variety of saree, indeed requires a brave heart to believe in the subject.

The film also marks the return of Mita Vasisht to the silver screen after quite a long time. The script of GANGOOBAI was selected for NFDC’s Screenwriters’ Lab in 2009, which picked 6 scripts to be mentored by the Binger Film Lab, Amsterdam. GANGOOBAI premiered at the MAMI 2012, in the New Faces in Indian Cinema section and then was featured in the South Asian Film Festival in Canada and the Hanoi International Film Festival, Vietnam, where it was in the Panorama section. It also was featured in the Indian Panorama at the International Film Festival f India, 2012 in Goa.

GANGOOBAI is a film about hope, triumph of spirit against all adversities, it is about exploring self and having faith that what one aspires one can indeed achieve it.

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