Cinema is better than any history book. It is better than any waking dream. It is an alternate form of reality looking back in time, giving everyone a chance to live differently within that window of 2-3 hours. Cinema is that one medicine that wears off a week’s soot from the soul.
However, not everyone has 2-3 hours to escape reality on a usual day. But weekends bring with them that time when the brain is not constantly checking the to-do list. On weekends, NewsGram brings to you movies which will help you get your catharsis, and unclog your chocked system.
So, for those who like to unplug every once in a while, here is a 2-day film festival schedule, where you just have to download the movies and then to infinity and beyond! This list of three movies has been made with the sole reason to give you a break from the all-pervading kitsch in today’s society.
Plan a mini film fest of 9 hours, do nothing, just live differently.
1. Sulemani Keeda, Director: Amit V. Masurkar
The film is an indie slacker comedy with many philosophical underpinning. Had it not been so jaw-achingly funny, it could have been an excellently shot crash course in existentialism, dreams and the nature of reality. Take this for instance, ‘How can one see herself in memories as a third person while the same is not possible in reality?’
It’s the best movie to snuggle to with someone special on this rainy day.
2. Gandu. Director – Qaushiq Mukherjee aka Q ( viewer discretion is advisory)
Q has a thing for making absurd cinema. His films have acquired cult status in the Indian indie film circuit. Gandu, dealing with, is somewhat more alt, if not weirder. The film becomes increasingly mind-boggling towards the end with Dhatura trip taking over the protagonist (Gandu) and his sidekick (Rickshaw). But the movie not once leaves the viewer behind or frustratingly confounded.
Gandu is a monochromatic journey through passion, obsession, addiction and satisfaction. It explores Rap and crap of Kolkata through a narrative on frustration that the self faces when it fails to express itself completely.
The film is just right to shake you around siesta time, enough to pump you up, but not enough to make you leave your film fest.
3. Tamas, Director – Govind Nihalani
Tamas is a masterpiece. It’s a relic from the golden area of Doordarshan. It was released as a four-part TV series for DD starring Om Puri, Pankaj Kapoor, Amrish Puri and other prominent actors from that era.
The film traces the rioting and mayhem during partition through a set of precisely carved characters. The film is so powerful that it chokes the viewer with emotions at various points of time. The brilliance of some of the scenes will be hard to match for a long time in Indian cinema.
The film will leave you feeling light in a sense that will help you carry the burden of the coming weekdays.
The movie 'Padmaavati' got into a legal tangle and after a strong protest by the ‘Rajput group’ and ‘Karni Sena’, the screening of movie Padmaavati’ was stopped and the matter was taken to Supreme Court
The movie ‘Padmaavati’ was renamed as ‘Padmaavat’ after huge uproar from a certain section of the society
A group of ‘Rajput group’ (Shri Rajput Karni Sena) is accusing the film director, Sanjay Leela Bhansali of distorting history and showing the Rajput community in bad light
‘Shri Rajput Karni Sena’ is a follower of Rajput caste organisation in India
The movie Padmaavat (initially named as Padmaavati) has been in news and creating a wave of the storm since the time of its inception. A group of ‘Rajput group’ (Shri Rajput Karni Sena) is accusing the film director, Sanjay Leela Bhansali of distorting history and showing the Rajput community in bad light. After a strong protest by the ‘Rajput group’ and ‘Karni Sena’, the screening of movie Padmaavati’ was stopped and the matter was taken to Supreme Court.
The lead actress of the movie, Deepika Padukone too could not escape off the scornful eyes of the Karni Sena. She has been threatened by the Karni Sena group of physically harming her if the need arises. Earlier, the case was taken up in Supreme Court and the court refused to stay the release of ‘Padmaavati’ over which the Allahabad High Court also declined to entertain a plea seeking a ban of the Bollywood film. Even after getting a clean chit from the apex court, the movie was banned in four states: Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Haryana. The protest by Karni Sena was staged at many places, which included burning of school buses and vandalizing public property.
According to some media reports, to calm down the raging row over the film, spiritual leader Sri Sri Ravi Shankar had invited historians R.S. Khangarot, Principal of Agarwal PG College in Jaipur and professor B.L. Gupta, retired history professor of the Rajasthan to watch the movie.
Although, the historians who were specially invited to judge the content of the movie claims that Padmaavat does not have anything that may hurt sentiments of any caste or community. But unfortunately, the ‘Shri Rajput Karni Sena’ on Tuesday again claimed that historical facts had been tampered with in the movie.
Who is Karni Sena
‘Shri Rajput Karni Sena’ is a follower of Rajput caste organisation in India. Recently, the ‘Karni Sena’ is in news because of their involvement in violent protests over the movie Padmaavat.
Presently, the ‘Karni Sena’ is headed by Lokendra Singh.
According to the records, Karni Mata is believed to be the deity, who is been worshipped widely in Rajasthan as an incarnation of the goddess Durga.
As per local belief, the goddess was born in an ordinary household and married a man of the Charan caste. Soon, the goddess left her marital house and wandered the deserts of Rajasthan for over 150 years, blessing kings and commoners alike.
The goddess is staunchly followed by the Rajput community and is the presiding deity of the royal houses of Jodhpur and Bikaner, thus occupying a prominent place in Rajput identity.
Take a look at the possible reasons and issues which led ‘Shri Rajput Karni Sena’ raised to stage a brutal protest and are said to be derogatory for them:
Deepika Padukone is shown to be a bold woman
Padmaavat is shown as a skilful warrior and good strategist. This portrayal totally goes against the notion of a woman in an Indian society. To which, Sanjay Leela Bhansali later makes Padmaavati a ‘dutiful’ wife who fans her husband when he is having his dinner.
Queen seemed to be better learned than the brahmins
In one scene, Padmaavati is shown answering all the questions of a learned brahmin with some perfect ease. Now that doesn’t go well with the idea of some people. In the later scene, her husband, Ratan Sen reminds her that she can keep her knowledge to herself and do not interfere in administrative matters.
Contrary to the common belief that it will always be the hero who will save her better half from any trouble, the movie showed the queen saving the king from the clutches of his enemy. It was taken as a blot by some section of the society.
The intellectual one
The move shows Ratan Singh to always boasting about the honour of his clan and kingdom to which, Padmaavat tries to reason with him often giving him the more sensible advice. But why to take the words of a woman so seriously when the honour seems to be at stake.
The independent one
In one of the scene, Padmaavat is seen showing taking decisions over the presence of men around her. Unaware of the authenticity of the matter, how can women take such big decisions on her own? This boils the blood of many.
No unity among Rajputs
The movie shows the ego clashes among the different Rajput kings. When Alauddin Khilji first attacked Chittor, Rattan Singh seeks the help of the neighbouring Rajput kings. But none of them agrees and turns a deaf ear towards him in the war.
Is it really justified for any woman to self-immolate herself, just in case her husband loses his life for any random reason? Doesn’t she have right to live on her own? Can’t a woman remarry like a man do after his wife leaves the earth? We all know that such facts don’t stand at anywhere.
The whole story revolves around a 13th-century Indian queen, Padmaavati. She was the princess of the Singhal kingdom and was known for her exceptional beauty and valour.
Padmaavati was the wife of Maharawal Ratan Singh, who is the ruler of Mewar. Alauddin Khilji, who was the reigning Sultan of Delhi at that time get caged by the remarkable personality of Padmaavati and thus went to great lengths to fulfil his greed.
Meanwhile, Ratan Sen was killed in a duel with Devpal, the king of Kumbhalner, who was also attracted with Padmaavati’s beauty. To protect their honour, Padmaavati and her companions self-immolated themselves (Jauhar) before Alauddin Khalji could capture Chittoor. After their sacrifice, the Rajput men died fighting on the battlefield.
Sanjay Leela Bhansali has added his own flair and interpretation to a Sufi poem written in 1540 by Malik Muhammad Jayasi.
The star cast of the movie includes Deepika Padukone as Rani Padmaavat, Ranveer Singh as Alauddin Khalji, Shahid Kapoor as Ratan Sen and Aditi Rao Hydari, Jim Sarbh, Raza Murad, Anupriya Goenka have featured in supporting roles.
Ratan Singh is shown as a steadfast and unflappable ruler, brimming with Rajput pride. His act of valour wins him the confidence of the Mewar kingdom and more importantly, Rani Padmaavat’s heart.
Rani Padmaavati is the key character in the whole movie. The plot revolves around the beauty, brains and valour of Rani Padmaavati. Due to it, Alauddin Khilji becomes obsessed with her and leaves no stone unturned to get her. He is portrayed as an unhinged, barbaric Sultan, who is consumed with a ravenous libido for power and flesh.
Ranveer as Alauddin Khilji is seen as an unhinged, barbaric Sultan, who is consumed with a starving ruler for power and flesh. He unleashes a beastly image on the screen with a scarred face, black eyes and a greased torso.
The scenes of flex muscles between Alauddin Khilji and Ratan Singh are some of very enthralling one.
Mehrunissa (Aditi Rao Hydari) gets the shock of her life when she discovers her husband Alauddin’s true nature.
The cinematographer has some beautifully jaw-dropping scenery. The effects of the action/ war scenes could have been better as expectations raised by a film of this scale. The songs are quite worthy of providing light entertainment. Overall, the movie Padmaavat is a visual delight for the audience and the hype created by the different sections of the society goes well to promote the movie.
‘The Times of India’ has rated it 4 out of 5, but ‘Firstpost’ reviews are not that encouraging for the movie ‘Padmaavat’, as they have rated it 1 out of 5, whereas ‘IMDB’ has given it 7.4 out of 10.
The critic seems to be impressed with the plot and the acting done in the movie. They have reviewed ‘Padmaavat’ as a strong performance combined with Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s stroke of visual brilliance.