- It’s not preachy
- It has one too many powerhouse performances
- The impactful narrative
- The inconclusive end
It’s not preachy
Yes, Lipstick Under My Burkha brings to fore the bitter truth about our country—that women are striving hard even today to break free against patriarchy and blatant chauvinism. It tells you the story of four vulnerable yet brave women who fight for their desire for sex, their right to choose their career, their freedom to dress the way they want to without being shamed. Despite these strong prejudices that every woman in the film tries to break, it doesn’t come across as one bit preachy. There’s a lot of funny banter, there’s plenty of LOL moments throughout the film—ones that every woman will identify with.
It has one too many powerhouse performances
Lipstick Under My Burkha is a movie that leaves you agitated against female subjugation—a concern that’s long been associated with our society. But when a movie like this fights its battles and finally sees the light of day, it’s a gamechanger for our society. More so because there’s Ratna Pathak Shah as Usha aka Buaji—who teaches you, rather unapologetically, that women even at 50, have a strong desire for lust. She’s comical, amusing and yet, so convincing every time she comes on screen. There’s Ahaana Kumra who’s a firecracker as Leela—a woman who never, at any point, makes you question her infidelity. There’s Plabita Borthakur as Rihana who wants to be Miley Cyrus, yearns for love and wears jeans—all this under a burka. And of course, there’s everybody’s fave actor, Konkona Sen Sharma, who’s fighting to be independent while battling marital rape and an oppressive husband. When a film gives you not one but 4 stellar performances, you can imagine what a treat Lipstick Under My Burkha actually is!
The impactful narrative
When you have Ratna Pathak Shah as the voiceover telling you the story of Rosy—who stands for all the women in the film, their sexuality and desires, as an audience, you’re already sold. Her narrative will crack you up, at the same time, will tell you the dire need for equality in our lives. When Shah speaks—you listen and that’s the power of casting one of the most notable actors of the industry.
The inconclusive end
If you’re looking for the same ol’ happy ending—back off. Lipstick Under My Burkha is far from your candyfloss cinema. There are explicit scenes and plenty of brave dialogues that you may have, as a woman, thought to yourself, but never really mustered the courage to say it loud. In a world that breeds in inequality and underplays women at every go, this movie says it like it is, with a pinch of humour of course. The end is inconclusive (that scene where 4 of them smoke and bond because they all have one cause is one of the many beautiful moments of the film). In the end of the movie, lives don’t change, there’s no revolution but you know you’ve left the theatre thinking that there are plenty of women like you and that they all want one thing—the freedom that they deserve.