Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Rang de Basanti Response

Rang de Basanti follows the “awakening” of a younger generation to the realities of a corrupt Indian government. It showcases a dual plot -- of modern day kids filming a movie and of the story of the actual Baghat Singh revolution they are attempting to film -- that merges to become one at the climax of the movie. This illustrates the "time-folding" that Aida mentioned in her review. This movie has many themes including generational reconciliation, patriotism, and unresolved social-political issues. To do so it follows Sue McKinley as she travels to India and collaborates on a documentary project with a friend named Sonia, who helps to recruit DJ, Sukhi, Karan, Aslam, and later on Laxman as actors for the film.

I agree with Aida's analysis that each character discovers and strives to fulfill his or her dharma. Their designated roles are foreshadowed when DJ's mother says, “Every Indian family sacrifices a son to the country.” This phrase suggests such a strong patriotism for and relationship to the mother country which dictates what each person must do. However, this movie also does a great job developing and illustrating relationships between each and every character: showing Laxman accepting Aslam's religion, showing Karan's distance from his father, and showing the blossoming romance between Sue and DJ. This brings up the point from Mooij's article "The New Bollywood: No Heroine, No Villains" in which he discusses the desire for the Indian audience to completely get to know a character: in his home environment, in his interactions with his peers and family, etc. In this way, the audience really connects to the characters and feels the immense loss as they all pass on.

I think the review of Rang de Basanti could have focused a little more on the caste system since it seems that the striation of social levels cause these issues of corruption and “adjustment” that allows for this corruption. The people in the higher castes such as Karan’s father and other government officials feel separate from the lower castes who feel that they are helpless and can do nothing about the corruption. But in the end, Karan points out to the listeners of the radio station an important fact: individuals can band together to fight this corruption because the government is a reflection of themselves.

No comments:

Post a Comment