‘To be able to see the hidden is an art’.
This expression is much of a metaphor into our lives as it is an expression of an idea that remains mostly latent into our day to day lives.
This idea surmises much of our existential dilemma living into this postmodernist critical world laden by social consumerism and acceptability. Into the monotonous lives of ours some days are not as mundane as others. Such is the sentiment of ecstasy, thrill and a mixed bags of emotions. A short film in the recent times echoes the same idea by none other than the famous personality from the cine world, Actor-Director-Scriptwriter Prakash Jha.
In a recent interview, talking about his film the eminent one time theatre personality opened about his venture ‘Justaju’. Justaju translates to ‘longing’ in English and the movie keeps up with the name. Justaju is a day in the life of Valmiki, an old retired professor who has little in life to look forward to.
Standing at thirty minutes, the film encompasses loneliness in its most nascent form, and yet cleverly juxtaposes it with spurs of excitement to underline the former more clearly. So much so, that the lines between natural and supernatural, begin to blur.
The cast is an amalgamation of multitalented and multifaceted personalities from the cine and theatre world. The cast includes veteran filmmaker Prakash Jha, yester-year actress Sarika and seasoned actors like Shishir Sharma, Onkar Das Manikpuri, and Saharsh Shukla. Upcoming actors Ayushi Lahiri and Varun Tewari have also given remarkable performances. This is not just enough as the cast is as top notch and interesting as the cast is. Director – Mudassir Mashalkar: Mudassir’s journey so far has included directing and producing more than fifty odd commercials, making documentary films about people he considers real life heroes, and scripting feature films.
He has worked with reputed people from the industry – Madhur Bhandarkar (on Heroine – TV Series), Ashutosh Gowariker (on Khelen Hum Ji Jaan se) and Kannan Iyer (on Ek thi Dayan) to name a few; He is currently directing audio-visuals for TV and digital mediums, under his own banner, Storybank Films and has worked on Brands like – MRF, Fortune, Lenovo, Mitashi and Masseter amongst many others. Producer – Nisha Sujan Malik: Closely associated with the F&B industry via a family run business, Nisha decided to satiate her hunger for cinema one fine day.
Her tryst with playing producer began with two short films, Justaju being one of them. Hence began the unconventional journey, as she now seeks more meaningful stories with understated messages and is happy that the filmy keeda within her has finally found a breeding ground.
Since it’s release the movie has been creating a buzz with selection at different festivals like Mumbai Shorts International Film Festival, Smita Patil Documentary and Short Film Festival, Pune Rajasthan International Film Festival, Jaipur Noida International Film Festival to name a few. In addition the movie has gained accolades and appreciation with two awards for Best Actor (Male) at Mumbai Shorts International Film Festival and Honourable Jury Mention at Noida International Film Festival.
The spectacle and splendour of the movie is an experience to behold as we look forward to having the best of cine world in short film genre.