The film follows a former Scripps spelling bee champion who takes care of her sick mother alone, until her estranged brother shows up and they are forced to confront long-stemming tension between them.
‘Definition Please’ stars Sujata Day in the lead role of Monica, alongside Ritesh Rajan, Anna Khaja, Jake Choi, Lalaine, LeVar Burton, and Maya Kapoor. The film focuses on Monica’s complicated relationship with both her mother, Jaya, and brother, Sonny, at a time when they are simultaneously mourning the loss of her father.
The story opens with the audience seeing a day in Monica’s life: taking care of her mother, conducting spelling bee tutoring sessions, and hanging out with her best friend, Krista. Her routine day comes to an end when Sonny unexpectedly drops by, and it’s the first time the viewer gets insight into how the three family members interact with each other.
At first glance, it seems as though Monica and Sonny, although distant, are civil with each other. However, after another health scare for Jaya, they are advised by a family friend to reconcile their differences and come together for their mother.
The second half of the film shows a big shift in the family: Sonny tells Jaya that she always favored Monica over him, and the viewer sees him break down. It becomes clear that Sonny suffers from mental health issues, however, Jaya refuses to acknowledge it, adding more strain to her relationship with both Monica and Sonny.
Sujata Day beautifully portrays a unique family dynamic, while simultaneously showcasing a realistic view of discussions around mental health in a South Asian family. Monica’s character is extremely relatable for many first-generation South Asian American millennial girls, who struggle to keep the balance between familial pressure and love. ‘Definition Please’ is now streaming on Netflix and is available to watch!