indian cinema heritage foundation

Rita (2009)

  • Release Date04/09/2009
  • GenreSocial
  • FormatColour
  • LanguageMarathi
  • Length2854.54 meters
  • Gauge35 mm
  • Censor RatingUA
  • Censor Certificate NumberCIL/2/74/2009
  • Certificate Date10/06/2009

Forty-year-old Rita (Pallavi Joshi) is in a sanatorium, recuperating from hysteria, anxiety, and grief. The only regular visitor she has is her youngest sister Sangita (Sai Tamhankar). Having recovered a little, she speaks of her desire to meet an old friend Saraswati (Renuka Shahane) before she can start a new life. So, she writes a long letter and that’s how the story of her life begins to unfold.

Shankar Welinkar aka Shanks (Mohan Agashe) and his wife Nelly (Suhasini Muley) are high society snobs who enjoy attending parties and living it up. Thus, they have no time for their three children, the youngest Sangita being still in her cradle. It is therefore left to their eldest daughter Rita to fend for herself and her siblings. When Shankar loses his job and is unable to find another, the family is in trouble. At 17, Rita learns typing and stenography and finds a suitable job to support the family. Her boss Vitthal Salvi (Jackie Shroff) is a kind-hearted man who helps her overcome all her family’s problems. He encourages her to complete her graduation and find a better job. He even helps her to arrange the weddings of her two sisters.

Life goes on smoothly. Rita is drawn closer to Vitthal and even visits his family -- so much so that she even nurses his wife after her operation. But Vitthal’s son is not so accepting and resents Rita’s relationship with his father. He misbehaves with her whenever she visits their place.

Rita’s sister Sangita realizes that Rita needs her own space, away from the prying eyes of their parents, and so, suggests buying a flat where she can meet Vitthal in privacy. But soon Rita becomes more possessive about Vitthal and forces him to accept their relationship boldly without any fear. She wants him to divorce his wife so that they live together with a clear conscience. Vitthal does not agree to this proposal which results in her turning hysterical. It is only after Saraswati’s arrival at the time of her discharge from the sanatorium that she finds her identity and accepts the reality of the situation and the people around her.

Based on Shanta Gokhale's novel Rita Welinkar.

Note: This is Jackie Shroff’s first film in Marathi.