Verdict: A heart-warming film that delivers a strong message.

"Doctor ka beta doctor, engineer ka beta engineer, aur bai ki beti bai" – This is the excuse that Apeksha, a Standard 10 student, uses for not studying hard enough. The girl’s mother, Chanda (Swara Bhaskar), on the other hand, gives it her all to make sure that her daughter gets the best education she can afford. She works as a maid, washes utensils at a local restaurant, packs boxes of shoes, and does various other odd jobs to earn money. Unfortunately, in spite of her mother’s sacrifices, Apeksha refuses to study and keeps failing in maths. Chanda, on the insistence of her employee (played by Ratna Pathak Shah), decides to study in Apeksha’s school in the hope of inspiring her daughter. The mother-daughter duo start seeing each other as competition, and the rest of the film comprises of the fights and some beautiful moments between them.

Debutant director Ashwiny Iyer Tiwari‘s Nil Battey Sannata works on two levels. One, the movie portrays the relationship between a mother and daughter, and second, it shows the importance of education. Nitesh Tiwari has written a wonderful story and the whole setup is perfect. Though, if the narrative had showed Apeksha change gradually, the climax wouldn’t have felt so rushed. However, it’s fine to overlook these small flaws in this otherwise brilliant film.

After working as supporting cast in films like Raanjhanaa, Tanu Weds Manu Returns, and Prem Ratan Dhan Payo, Nil Battey Sannata is Swara Bhaskar’s moment in the spotlight. The actress delivers and how! Whether playing a helpless mother or a hardworking student, Swara shows  love and angst as both, with equal brilliance. Ria Shukla is so good as the annoying kid that at one point you’d wish her mother had slapped her a bit earlier in life. You always expect Ratna Pathak Shah to give a fantastic performance and the actress does just that. She’s superb and will leave you in splits in her few scenes.

Why You Should Watch This Movie:  

Nil Battey Sannata is a wonderful film that will appeal to all. Chanda and Apeksha will win your heart with their inspiring story. At the end of the movie, you’ll want to go home and give your mother a hug!