Sarah Kapoor writes, directs and stars in “The Bad Mother,” a comedic look at the drama of balancing motherhood and work. Sometimes those scales of balance are completely out of whack which is what makes this new film hilarious, relatable, and at the same time quite poignant.
As a stay-at-home mother, Tara (Kapoor) attempts to regain some of her inner-strength and creativity while changing diapers, shopping, cleaning, and toting kids around. It’s an important job, but exhausting and frequently thankless and unappreciated. There seems to be something missing in Tara’s life. With a devoted husband who has a slave-driver of a boss, the two find themselves in a tough situation. Her hubby is demoted to traveling for his job during the week, leaving Tara to be a “single” mom until the weekends. As her son inadvertently posts one of her well-written rants about her husband’s work environment, it goes viral, setting into motion Tara’s eventual internal confrontation with her needs as well as society’s view of working moms. Of course, there are hilarious, truly laugh out loud moments as Tara unintentionally finds herself higher than a kite just before her possible big break back into the work force.
Addressing the guilt and love of motherhood is eloquently portrayed in “The Bad Mother.” Kapoor hits the nail on the head as she creates this character who loves her children more than anything, but craves for intellectual stimulation and continuing to develop her own identity. Like so many of us, we do lose a part of who we are when we make the choice to stay home. But we also gain a part of ourselves that we didn’t know even existed. Addressing an issue that Heather Booth brought to the forefront of the United States government back in the 1960’s, daycare, Kapoor gives us a first-hand account of why this is still such a difficult and controversial issue.
Kapoor balances wearing the writer, director and actor hats with absolute grace and style. Her character, however, is not always so graceful which leads to uproarious situations in professional and personal environments. She’s extraordinary with her physical comedic performance as her character is is under the influence during a television interview about her post. Lacking an edit mode, her honesty and blunt conversation is shockingly real coated luxuriously in humor. Kapoor is remarkable in every scene; her expressions are priceless. As a former stay at home mom, it was as if she was channeling my younger life, filled with guilt, love, remorse, and pride into her performance.
Kapoor’s mother, Sadnha Kapoor actually plays her mother “Nani” in the film adding that element of reality to the story. While she may be from a different country, all moms are the same–brutally honest right when you don’t want them to be, but more importantly when you need them to be. Again, there is that wonderful layer of humor associated with this situation, but always maintaining that underlying message of balance in life and priorities. This mother-daughter relationship is an element of the story that will resonate with any female out there. As the two grow to understand one another, the journey these two women quickly travel is heartbreaking, surprising, and intrinsically beautiful.
Friendships and a longing for a lost love find their way into this film as we look at the myriad number of relationships in life. Again, that element of reality, aka chaos, in life is succinctly portrayed in “The Bad Mother.”
“The Bad Mother” is one of those gems that integrates socially relevant issues, relationship difficulties, and life into one genuine and hilarious story. The characters are developed fully, artistically depicting the complexities of life, allowing us to relate to the situations and the emotions. Rarely do you find a film that can balance all of this. Now, balancing being a mom and working is still the question at hand. At least we can laugh about it thanks to “The Bad Mother.”
“The Bad Mother” releases on DVD and VOD (video on demand) beginning August 1, 2017. For more information about this film, go to www.badmothermovie.com