How long are we going to sell mediocre things with an excuse of money? I have no issues with people making money, but at least there should be an attempt after they make their share to explore and show things that could challenge our limits as an audience. Where we are forced to think about things? Bollywood today makes the kind of movies it does mainly , because the biggest banners and the biggest stars are the biggest cowards. I remember watching Aamir Khan saying in Koffee with Karan, ” I don’t believe in the 100 crore club. I rather be a part of movies that people will remember for ages. Say like Sholay at that time it might not have made 100 crores but every kid knows who Gabbar is. I want to make things which will stay with people for a long time.” He said all this and I went and watched Dhoom 3. It was one of the worst movies in a huge list of bad movies released in the recent years. It made 200 crores,apparently. The most powerful people in the industry fear to experiment and that disappoints me. They have so much money and such intelligent people. Why still they wouldn’t dare to show me something original? India has so many stories to tell. Where is the courage? Cinema has an effect on people, especially us Indians. It is such an amazing platform to showcase what India and Indians are made up of! It remains untapped 90% of the times.
There are some exceptions in Bollywood today. Anurag Kashyap, Dibankar Banarjee, Kiran Rao, Ritesh Batra and especially Anand Gandhi restore my faith in Bollywood . If they are what the future holds then it excites me as an audience. I am fascinated by Anand Gandhi. I saw Ship of Theseus lately and I was stunned, baffled, inspired, excited,sad and touched all at the same time. The movie is almost of three hours. It is long, it takes it’s own sweet time to move ahead. I watched the movie without moving for a second, neither did I look at my phone in all that time. There is no music, it does not have a known face, no stars, it doesn’t have humour, it doesn’t have men tearing their shirts apart, it doesn’t have women trying extremely hard to look sexy. Still it held my attention for all that time and then some. After the movie ended I sat looking at the blank screen of my computer for what seemed like a very long time. It was overwhelming. I finally realised the power of Cinema of how mesmerising it can be. There was finally a film that forced me to think, that appreciated my intelligence. That asked something more of me as an audience. It forced me to use my brain, my heart and my senses.
The second one is of a monk who is fighting a case against the use of animals in lab testing. He develops a condition of liver cirohsis and decides to stop eating or take any medications. He decides to die. His part ends when he is minutes away from death and he calls his disciple to take him to a hospital and give him some food. There is some great conversation between him and a young friend of his. It is philosophical yet simple at the same time. The third story is about a young man who has just got a kidney transplant done. His motto of life is simple to make money and have fun. He has a grandmother who is constantly asking him to be less materialistic. To indulge in a self less act and to realise how fulfilling it can be. He gets his chance when he is in a hospital and he hears a woman crying helplessly. He finds out that her husband was tricked. His kidney was removed and sold in the pretext of an appendix operation. He finds him living in very poor conditions and really helpless and he decides to find him his kidney. His search takes him to a foreign land. He finds the guy, confronts him and the man agrees to not giving him the kidney, but sponsor his transplant. In the meantime the fraud organisation back in India sends the poor man a check of 6lakh rupees. The poor man calls the guy to express gratitude. The young man tells him to not settle for this. That he had found the guy and he will bring him to court and get him justice, his kidney and much more money. The man yells at him saying he doesn’t want to fight any case the six lakh rupees is enough. The young man comes back to his grandmother. He sits besides her and she says, ” tum kuch nahi karte toh itna bhi nahi hota.” He looks up at her and she realises he is not satisfied with the result. She looks up at him and says, ” Bas itna hi hota hai.”