At the heart of Mumbai’s mill country, Lalbaug-Parel, stands Bharatmata Cinema, one of the remaining single screen theatres that plays only Marathi films. The theatre is an iconic reminder of a colourful working class culture which is now on the decline in Mumbai. Through the narratives of Kapil Bhopatkar, the owner, and Baban, one of the oldest employees of the theatre, the film explores the history and development of Bharatmata as a space for articulating the cultural identity of Mumbai’s working class and ponders on its existence and survival. The characters, though from widely disparate socio-economic classes, come together in their passionate love for cinema and their celebration of the main character in the film, Bharatmata Cinema itself.
The filmmakers are alumni of School for Media & Cultural Studies (SMCS), Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai, India. The film has been produced by SMCS in 2012.