Meet a transgender sex-ed teacher, a knife-fighting mafioso and India’s top gossip blogger. Go fishing in the Arabian Sea, rub noses with Bollywood elite and question dubious election results. Step into a collapsed building rescue effort, and dance on the streets to celebrate another year of survival. Jugaad is an immersive mosaic of stories about people from different communities in Mumbai, one of the most disparate, diverse and densely populated cities on Earth.
Behind the camera, the outsider-filmmaker makes her way through India’s Promised Land, exploring the highs, lows and in-between moments of everyday life. Through a series of striking observations and cinematic stories, JUGAAD non-judgmentally captures the emotional essence of an important and complex urban centre while reflecting how we all survive our paradoxical world. Survival means different things to different people, whether it’s struggling to keep a roof over our family’s heads, fighting to change society or finding one’s purpose.
The word “jugaad” is a colloquial Hindi and Punjabi word that means creative problem solving. It’s the connective tissue of the city, is essential for artists to master, and is at the crux of survival in our world today.
76 min / Canada / 2017