Perhaps one of the most famous Indian whom many people knew with her nicknamed ‘The Human-Computer’, Shakuntala Devi biopic was made into a movie which is directed by Anu Menon and it starred Vidya Balan, Jisshu Sengupta, Sanya Malhotra, and Amit Sadh.
The film was released on 31st of July by Amazon Prime Videos and it was supposed to get released in theatres on 8th May, 2020 but due to ongoing pandemic, the movie was released digitally via Amazon OTT Platform.
The movie details the life biopic of Shakuntala Devi who had no schooling, no formal mentor to train but little Shakuntala falls in love with numbers and is interested to play with numbers. And the story continues how the young Shakuntala Devi overcomes all the trouble and tries to make a mark with her incredible gift of calculating.
The second part of the movie focuses on her family life where she argues with her daughter, fights and arguments, etc. This story of affection, expectation, disappointment, of troubled mothers and their angry daughters, spans three generations. The story showcases how the mother and daughter struggle with each other to get what they need. And finally, life comes in full circle when the daughter after growing up gets married and finally begins to understand the hardships.
The movie opens with the daughter of Shakuntala Devi wants to sue her mother for destroying her financially. “Your mother could get a jail sentence,” the lawyer says.
“My mother has taken from me everything I loved,” Anupama says and the film cuts to the time depicting 1934 Bangalore where a young girl will be calculated, and then she will be given other calculation.
Soon, Shakuntala’s dad sees this as an opportunity and starts booking young Shakuntala for shows. She grows up in this family and grows thinking her skill will help her in the future. So she leads a grown-up lifestyle where she answers most of the mathematical equations thrown at her.
She soon moves to London where a man impressed with her genius decides to give her a stage and makeover her technique so that it makes the audience more engaging. The film keeps toggling between Shakuntala Devi’s past and present, the personal and the professional. As Shakuntala, the genius impresses the world, away from public accolades is familial dysfunction.
She gets married to Paritosh Banerjee played by Jisshu Sengupta where he is confident about her and he doesn’t watch Shakuntala change. Later Shakuntala and her daughter go on the world tour where they meet Nelson Mandela, gets Guinness Book of World Records. But Anupama misses her father, see’s her mother’s flaws, and loves a guy named Ajay played by Amit Sadh. But Shakuntala denies her relationship and thus begins the motherly story of Shakuntala
The film has a good story, however, there have been many cuts which is difficult to catch on and it gets caught off-guard. However, the film spans 3 generations which will let us know the differences. But the movie does a lot of time travel jumping between past and present which gets confusing as this does not have a constant storyline.
Overall, the actors playing the roles have played it beautiful to keep the audience engaged. The film is rated 6.3 in IMDb which says it’s a good movie to watch.