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Synopsis: Soon to be a high school graduate, Jiyah, begins her day excited to attend prom. However, the process of getting ready becomes increasingly difficult as her mother, who does not approve of makeup, continuously enters the bedroom. Although her mother’s intention of entering is to give Jiyah a bracelet to wear for the night, Jiyah is not receptive of it, as her mother begins to dictate the amount of eyeshadow she can wear. While Jiyah is finishing getting ready, her mother faces scrutiny for wearing western clothing, by her own mother (Jiyah’s Nanni). As Jiyah’s mother frustratedly enters the room again, she, in the heat-of-the-moment projects her anger onto her daughter, ruining Jiyah’s makeup and dress. It is now up to Jiyah to decide whether she will make it to prom or succumb to her mother’s wounds, yet again.

Genre

Drama

Language

English, Punjabi

Run Time

8 minutes

Starring

Kiran Rai (Lead - Jiyah)
Gurbir Bal Gogo (Secondary Lead - Satti)
Poornima Mohan (Nanni)

Directed by

Eesha Johal

Produced by

Eesha Johal

Composer

Brent Setterington
Viera Zmiyiwsky

Production Designer

Lucy Ray

Cinematographer

Ece Latifaoglu

Director's Statement

As a South Asian female, I resonate strongly with the main character’s constant internal struggle to be herself and to be the dutiful daughter she is called to be. We both have often felt disconnected and misunderstood by our mothers. Moreover, our mothers also felt they could not express their truth due to the oppressive beliefs passed on by their foremothers. I hope that this film captures those raw and arduous emotions that cannot always be articulated succinctly into words. It’s for my sisters of the future and my sisters of today. It is my desire to create a sense of unison amongst us women, to collectively get through the reality daughters face for merely being a female and to extend this to our mothers who also share in this painful generational wound.

Director's Bio

After studying psychology in Toronto and having an interest in topics closely related to emotions and human connections, I felt a desire to get into film and create characters that resonate those raw emotions for people who look like me. As a visible minority, born and raised in Surrey, B.C, I want to be a voice for the South Asian-Canadian community, specifically the Punjabi diaspora. Showing them that they are worthy of being on screen and that they matter. It is a sense of belonging – seeing stories of people who look like you in films.

Attending Toronto Film School provided me the opportunity to write and direct a thesis short film featuring Punjabi’s in the midst of a pandemic, and since then I have been working on a few projects to better my craft. Inspired by my directorial debut short “The Mother Wound”, I have begun production on a documentary based on South Asian mother-daughter relationships.

Filmmaking has made me realize that I’m not merely driven by passion to make a change, but more so by purpose, as that is how I feel most connected to my people, myself, and my art. Although, there isn’t a large enough reach in the Canadian/International film industry for South Asians yet, my hope is that I’ll be able to contribute it, help expand it, and make a difference.

Production Year

2021

Instagram

https://www.instagram.com/eeshajohal/?hl=en

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