Kolkata: There will come a time in your life when you will look into the mirror and ask yourself ‘Are you happy with yourself?’, ‘Áre you doing what you like doing?’ or ‘Where does your happiness lie?’
Once you are past your teens, and then your 20s and get into your 30s life suddenly isn’t as cheerful as it had been all this while. During your teens you discover the perks of growing up, in your 20s you have your first brush with independent income and by the time you are at the end of your 20s the first flicker of grey hair makes you wonder about the biological clock ticking away.
So by the time you are at the threshold of early 30s you want to get married, try having kids and set up a family all at the same time. Reason? It is the done thing! Some jump onto the bandwagon without perhaps even realising whether the done-thing for others will quite turn into the done-thing for you as well!
Panga’s Jaya Nigam (Kangana Ranaut) is one such character. She is someone who used to be former Indian captain at kabaddi. She had a flourishing career, a beautiful relationship which went on to become an inspiring marriage story. Till she had a baby, when her career went for a toss. In the midst of all this she becomes this dutiful wife, doting mother and an average railway employee at the ticket counter! Till one day, when things change and she decides to go out and look for her old self again! Little realising the old self is just where it was, within her, still living in the past.
Director: Ashwiny Iyer Tiwari
Cast: Kangana Ranaut, Yagya Bhasin, Jassie Gill, Richa Chadha, Neena Gupta
Rating: Four stars out of five
In terms of performance both Kangana and Jassie are superlative. They play an ordinary couple with just the right amount of ordinariness. Richa Chadda as Meenu and Neena Gupta as Jaya’s mother wow the audience in equal measure. The show stealer, however, is Yagya Bhasin who plays Adi, Jaya’s son! He has the best lines and more scope to deliver than any of the other characters. In fact he is the protagonist and catalyst in more ways than one!
It is an inspiring story for a lot of people who are suffering from a mid-life crisis. It is also a tale of two souls, two partners trying to work towards each other’s dreams. In fact, there is a scene where Jaya talks about how instrumental her husband has been in building her career, to the extent her mother feels left out of acknowledgements.
But ‘Panga’ is no ‘Chak De! India’. This film is not about promoting any particular sport that is fast losing out in terms of popularity and visibility. Rather it is an individual’s journey into her past, picking up pieces from her past and finally letting go of the past for a not-so glamorous present. The film is also about settling down into your own space, getting into your own skin and reaching out for your dreams, albeit with a pinch of salt!