short films

‘Delhi Belly’ writer has a take on the Mahabharata, and it’s not for kids

Akshat Verma delves into the real story behind Draupadi and her five husbands in the short film ‘Mama’s Boys’.

“That’s Kunti, my mom. And mom, that’s Draupadi.”

In the present, many miles away from Indraprastha, Arjun (Amol Parashar) brings home Draupadi (Aditi Rao Hydari) and is informed by his mother Kunti (Neena Gupta) that she must be shared with his four other brothers. Like the epic, Draupadi doesn’t have a choice in the matter, but she does decide to act in ways that the noble chroniclers of the epic would not have imagined.

The short film Mama’s Boys is meant for everybody who had dirty thoughts when they first read about Draupadi and her five Pandava husbands in their C Rajagopalachari editions. Written and directed by Akshat Verma, the writer of the slacker comedy Delhi Belly, Mama’s Boys has a fine ensemble of actors, including Jim Sarbh and Arunoday Singh, who achieve the desired deadpan vibe. But the humour is often banal and the narrative meanders quite a bit during its 16.33-minute duration. There is a sense that Verma needed more time to settle in before he could hit his stride and develop his characters fully.

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‘Mama’s Boys’.
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