Box Office: Movies that left an impression on me
I am back on a universally favourite topic – movies!
I recently saw some excellent Hindi Movies. And of course, a few terrible ones as well, about which I am not going to write and spare you all the agony!
Among the good ones – Super 30, Mission Mangal, Batla House, Chhichhore and Saand Ki Aankh are note worthy. Other than Chhichhore, all the others are based on true stories.
In all these movies, the hero/heroine does not hanker after the limelight and willingly and happily let others take all the glory.
They seem to get “atma trupti”, for lack of a better translation “satisfaction of the soul” by just unwaveringly doing their duty in line with the immortal lines from Bhagawat Gita – karmanye vaadhikaaraste ma phaleshu kada chana.. loosely translated as “You are entitled to do your duty but never to the results of your action”.
Based on a true story, the protagonist here is a mathematician, a genius at that. From a very humble family in Patna, Bihar, he is not able to put together the required funds to take up the offer received from the prestigious Cambridge University, based upon his paper published in the Journal of Mathematics.
Undeterred, he sets up a coaching school for IIT Entrance only for people from the extremely poorer sections of society – a housemaid’s child, a brick layer’s kid etc; and totally free at that. Here too, it is not that he takes all and sundry poor folks. He makes them go through a rigorous written test and takes the top 30 from among them.
With the full support of his mother and brother, he runs a Gurukul sort of place, funding for all the 30 students, boarding, lodging and besides, provides free teaching. And teaching is novel and indigenous, at the same time, making it interesting and practical. No wonder in the first year, all 30 students clear the IIT Entrance and get admission!
And the hero refuses to take any money or support from any one – Govt, Private Sector, etc – lest he be constrained by any of them.
I am not saying anything more. Do see the film.
Another lovely film based upon a true story, the hero leads a team of predominantly women scientists on Mission Mangal. With a shoe string budget – perhaps of only one shoe, they embark upon an ambitious plan – India’s first interplanetary expedition – the Mars Orbit Mission.
Here, the hero goes one step further. Right in the beginning of the movie, even though it is not his fault he takes the rap for a failed mission and shields his colleague.
And in the very end, when Mission Mangal succeeds against all odds, he steps aside and willingly and happily lets his colleagues enjoy all the limelight, in many ways reminiscent of MS Dhoni, after every victory, especially the 2011 World Cup Cricket Victory in Mumbai. You will have to strain to locate MSD in the group picture as he will largely hidden from the cameras in one corner!
A hard-hitting movie on the real life Batla House incident. A group of dedicated cops go after terrorists holed up in Batla House. And the problems they encounter during the “encounter” and later on as well, during the inevitable court trial.
Here too, the leader shields his people and short of saying “the buck stops here”, takes everything on the chin. This is in short contrast to his superiors who do not show even a fraction of his moral courage.
How the terrorist is caught and how the main protagonist convincingly argues his case is worth viewing.
Another lovely film. In sharp contrast to today’s scenario, the parents do not at all put pressure on their child to excel in academics. However, the child inflicts a lot of pressure on himself – both peer group as well as his parent’s stellar education record.
What is especially nice in the film is even though the parents are estranged, it has been handled fairly maturely and does not cause any mental or psychological turmoil to their son.
Also, the way the parents’ college mates, whom they have not met for ages, rally around to get the son back on his feet and eventually succeed is indeed terrific.
Definitely worth a watch.
Saand Ki Aankh
Perhaps the best among all of them, saved for the last.
A typical male chauvinist village in UP. The men folk loll around, drinking, smoking and doing pretty much nothing. In sharp contrast, the women folk toil the whole day in the field, at home and pretty much do everything only to be bullied and bossed around by their men. And the women are differentiated one from the other by the colour pallu or ghunghat they cover their faces with!
Two of the sisters-in-law decide to get their grand daughter/daughter to learn pistol shooting when a new academy is set up in their village. Whilst the village boys do not show any interest in shooting, the older women show their latent prowess in shooting by hitting the bull’s eye (saand, i.e. bull, ki aankh, ie. eye!).
While the girls slowly start learning the ropes, the two older women take to it like a duck to water and win medals galore in shooting. How they surreptitiously participate in the events is one of the many highlights of the film.
By sheer dint of hard work and tenacity and single minded focus, the women at long last get their due and the rightful place in society.
Definitely worth more than a watch.