Friday, June 5, 2009

Yes Madam, Sir

Showing at the Museum of Modern Art: Yes Madam, Sir, directed by Megan Doneman

Screening tonight and tomorrow as part of MoMA's "The New India" film series.

Synopsis from the film's website:

In these uncertain times comes a heartfelt story of boundless courage, determination, and inspiration…

Filmed in India over six years and narrated by Academy Award winning actor, Helen Mirren, Yes Madam, Sir is a ‘David and Goliath’ epic story profiling Asia Nobel Prize winner, Kiran Bedi – India’s first woman police officer.

Yes Madam, Sir carries the audience through an emotional, tumultuous, frustrating and often hilarious journey of a person who defies all odds, makes history, ruffles feathers, and who triumphs to ultimately affect change from within a centuries-old world.

A modern day Gandhi, Bedi is an intriguing paradox: deified by millions for her commitment to social justice and her public stance against corruption; vilified by the establishment as a publicity seeking, uncontrollable megalomaniac. The true drama lies not in Bedi’s extraordinary audacity, but in the inherent contradictions in her character. In Bedi’s eyes, she fights the fight of the underdog on an ultimately sinking ship.

With her baton at the ready, Bedi will always find a battle. Paradoxically the very qualities that propel Kiran Bedi to triumph could ultimately spell her downfall. The contradictions in Bedi’s character are never so evident than when her work and personal life are paralleled. Through exclusive scenes of Bedi on the job as India’s most controversial police officer, and through intimate home scenes with her father and daughter, and tender moments with her estranged husband, the filmmaker’s uncensored access unravels the truth behind the icon to reveal the most tragic, poignant and comedic moments of the film.

Packed with heart, Yes Madam, Sir is a roller coaster ride of the triumph and frustration, fame and infamy, comedy and tragedy, passion and pain of a sole leader, and a searing insight into a lawmaker who becomes a law unto herself.

Unfortunately, I can't find any trailers or clips, but this movie has been scooping up awards from film festivals left and right, so it is worth checking out. Interview with Megan Doneman is here.

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