Vikramaditya Motwane's "Jubilee" (2023) is a Hindi-language series that explores the rise and fall of the fictional Bombay production house Roy Talkies in the Golden Age of Indian cinema.
However, in the stunning cinematography and soundtrack, its nuanced, fresh portrayal of male mental health against the 1947 Partition gets lost.
Ruthless studio boss Srikant Roy displays bouts of chronic narcissism, depression, and anxiety.
He struggles to maintain his independence and marriage in a newly Independent India enmeshed in Cold War rivalry.
He commits suicide in the end to escape debts and a shattered reputation.
Roy's prodigy Binod Das aka superstar "Madan Kumar" displays symptoms of performance anxiety, inferiority complex, and trauma-induced dissociation.
He is haunted by the guilt and ghost of a theatre-actor, Jamshed Khan, whose identity Das hijacks during a religious riot.
The third male character is a Karachi refugee, Jay Khanna, who is plagued by the post-Partition helplessness of a dispossessed and uprooted bread-winner.
He represents the untreated, un-chronicled mental health disorders (like depression and anxiety) triggered in the post-colonial aftermath.
Nonetheless, his frustration, disillusionment, and fear of the future propel him to carve out his own destiny in the ruthless realm of India's Tinseltown.