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Monday, February 23, 2009

Jai Ho!!! - But Kiski ??



Well I am feeling stuffed, tensed and choked again. As I opened the TV, it was flooded with the news of 8 Oscars the movie Slumdog Millionaire has won. My God! The whole country has gone crazy!!...People have proved that there are only two religions in India– movies and cricket. By the way, except for AR Rehman’s and Pookutty's awards, what exactly do we have for celebration? Their awards are for their own technical skill apart from the story. Only these can be called the ones truly bagged by Indians. Otherwise, what are we so excited that we are celebrating... for the parade of our country’s black side to the rest of the world? What are we so proud of? Should we really do so?

But my point is, making money and popularity by showcasing our penury is definitely not digestible. This movie has shown all the poverty and distress in details to outside world giving the ‘real’ picture of India. Agreed, we have slums, we are still juggling with penury and hunger, but then does even the USA not have its own slums, its dens of crime? There are a lot many countries worse off than India. And India has brighter faces as well.

Similar is the case with 2008 Man Booker Prize winning book ‘The White Tiger’ by Arvind Adiga. The very concept is strange prima facie; the protagonist, a slum urchin rises all the way through all possible means including robbery and murder to become a white collar entrepreneur. Then he writes to the Chinese Premier giving graphic details of his ‘successful rise’ as well as of the countryside’s dark life. It might seem interesting for the foreigners, but for us the stark realities of slums are everyday sights. And other countries don’t have better or no slums. We don’t need entire (and so depressing) book to understand it.

Slumdog Millionaire is not Indian but a British movie shot in India and was released here later. Lovleen Tondon, the assistant director was roped in to get the local flavor. Even the lead actor Dev Patel is out and out an NRI.

Also, an amazing movie like Tare Zameen Pe (TZP) was packed home. I feel TZP showed how cinema can be used as a powerful medium to the benefit of the society and changed the way every parent, teacher and even our sleepy government looked at the school children. The government actually made amendments in the existing rules to give dyslexic kids half an hour extra in Boards.

We have a mental block that ‘west’ means ‘best’ and crave for its approval for our best. I strongly feel Oscars are over hyped. We need to shun chasing them and maintain our self confidence. Though India has gained independence long back, we still continue to be mental slaves to the white skin.

24 comments:

  1. If a western movie is getting an oscar... why r u feeling choked.. Ignore it...!

    Nobody in Dispur, Assam is celebrating its success...! Easy!

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  2. hi Abhinav

    thanks :)
    m actually talking about the overhype taken almost to the level of insanity..:)

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  3. dittoo, echoed my thought, why this hoopla over a british fil? What are we celebrating? somebody making money over selling our drawbacks, I always make it a point to buy the books which get some international prize, and so far I think it was only Suitable boy which was natural and interesting...Inheritance of loss, White tiger, god of small things, none of them was interesting even.

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  4. hello maam

    thanks for the wonderful comment :)

    yaa we must take pride in our achievements rather then cribbing upon our dark sides...but sadly we are still mental slaves to the goras :(

    keep visiting :)

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  5. I completely agree with u... nd infact i'd seen d movie fr maslf nd dnt hav any clue tht wt kinda moral is it gvng...
    i lykd the movie bt rate it as an above avg.. nd still ppl in India r takin proud of a western movie gettin oscars...

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  6. hii Pink Teddy

    thanks :)

    yaa its a briish movie.. what are we so excited about? of our penury parade ??? we are obsessed with oscars sadly :(
    we need to believe in ourselves and its the high time we should wake up :)

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  7. The very first time I watched the movie, I felt disgusted!! it was like a part of 'me' was being taken away somehow... Was it necessary to show all the slums and all the misery that happens here.. and that too, to our poor kids?????? I felt cheated as an Indian... And although I felt the movie direction, background score and sme other aspects were awesome... I believe there are much better movies made by Indians which deserve a much bigger standing ovation than this one....
    TZP was surely one of them!!!!

    P.S: try checking my old blog for the taare zameen par... i had blogged abt it a year bac!!!! i m sure u will like it...

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  8. hii Diva

    thanks :)

    yupp! this movie is actually a british one...and a parade of the distress and poverty of India.. ur emotions are justified. TZP was a thousand times better yaar but sadly..:(

    sure, I'll check ur post soon :)

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  9. Absolutely right and you wrote what I was about to write...but we indians are like that only, we call the remotest thing as ours if it happens to get us some glory

    Anyways you are blog rolled for the future :)

    Keep Blogging

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  10. hii Ashish

    Thanks :)
    welcome to Hummingwords :)

    yup!I agree. it has been happening since long, we even claimed Dr.Hargobind Khurana, Amar Bose, Bobby Jindal and anyone who has got even a slightest namesake connection remotely with India.

    and ya thanks a lot for blogrolling me :)

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  11. When I watched the movie for the first time, I enjoyed it. But it was not something that convinced me deserved an oscar. I absolutely agree that the phoren director had the upper hand.

    Would the same movie with an Indian director got an oscar?

    Another point is we are accustomed to these scenarios, however for the world outside this is a revelation.

    I beleive the world goes by what they see. First they believed India is about Singin and dancing (As in bollywood movies) and now this.I have no issues in them showing slums and all that, its reality. But there is also another side to it, but they have made it look like mumbai itself is a slum.


    However I hope next time more deserving movies should get a chance...for eg. TZP

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  12. i feel so irritated with all the paper filling reams about Jai ho...whole of TOI yesterday was about oscars only, wheres national awards get a very small entry on the first page only.and then we say we are self respecting people, we are still mentally slave to firangis, we respect evryhting english so what if they showing shit literally.

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  13. hello ma'am

    thanks for the comment :)

    yup! I agree ..u hit the nail, what we need is a self awakening and self confidence.

    please keep visiting :)

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  14. hi Maddy
    thanks :)

    welcome to Hummingwords..:)

    'we are accustomed to these scenarios, however for the world outside this is a revelation.'.is absolutely right.for us such things are mundane things and reality while for goras these are big revelations, but still marketing our penury and poverty for fame and money is not right.

    I was deeply hurt when TZP was out from the Oscars and I really admire Aamir Khan for the fact that he is not Oscar crazy like others.

    keep visiting :)

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  15. :-) Very very true. The same thought that I penned down....I was miffed with the UPA government taking credit for the movie's success...How absurd! Vote ke liye kuch bhi karte hain...

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  16. i agree....after all its not an indian film...its a foreign film for us...only that it has indian actors...indian musicians......well...all credit to rehman..and pookutty....their success is creditable....but look at the parade of anil kapoor, irfan khan...and the rest.....look at their roles....and plus the media is interviewing saurabh shukla...remb he had a role in slumdog....!!!

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  17. Hi Insignia

    thanks :)

    I read ur article, its really nice yaar :)

    exactly, votes ke liye kuch bhi possible hai yaar :(

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  18. Hi Aditi

    thanks :)

    haan yaar, exactly.. its a British movie, we are are celebrating for 'their' success rather then feeling proud for our own docume. smile pinky..:)

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  19. Anythings possible dude. I completely agree wid ya.

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  20. Hi Jagjit

    thanks and welcome to Humming words

    ya u r right :)I agree..anything is possible for fame and money.

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  21. m really wondering what kinda movies are getting oscars..if this is the standard of oscars i can surely understand why TZP did not get one...

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  22. hi Priyanka

    thanks :)

    absolutely right ! and we are just too much obsessed with the Oscars.

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  23. You should also watch a marathi movie called Tingya (it has subtitles on youtube). Very simple and beautiful movie on farmer life which won international film festival awards beating TZP.

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  24. Hi Pratap

    thanks for coming :)

    ya, I'll try..:)

    ReplyDelete

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