Tag Archives: Mahabharata

The Predicament

By Joybrato Dutta


My eyes blinked. My eyelids fluttered. My hands trembled, as I tried to reach the button, which was just two metres away from me. A thousand voices had formed allegiance in my brain and were asking me to not press it. However, I was seeking that one voice that would make me aware of the repercussion. What if I am not supposed to press the button? What if it’s meant to be this way? The voices in my head told me, it would be better to leave it. My life could be much better. Something better might be waiting for me once the moment passed.

The excruciatingly painful moment just didn’t pass. I looked around. I was in a gas chamber, or a jail, or maybe the vault of a bank. I just couldn’t tell. My vision was blurred. All I could see was the button. I was like Arjun, the great archer from Mahabharata. Well, probably Arjun on acid. Because for some inexplicable reason my hands refused to follow my orders.

The sound in the room was deafening. It was like someone scratching a black board with nails. God knows what caused that noise. What had I done to deserve this? What happened last night? I tried looking through my blurry eyes. I couldn’t spot anyone. Where were my friends? Where was the girl who danced with me last night? I remember drinking with her.

Oh damn! She got me a drink. Did she mix anything in my drink? Why couldn’t I remember? I just remember leaving my friends and sitting in her car. My friends had warned me about such poison ivies. “Poison Ivy? She looked more of a damsel in distress” I retorted. “There’s a bitch in every bitchaari”, my friends cautioned me. Why didn’t I listen to them? Why do I have to always surrender to my stubbornness? Look what it has landed me into. Visuals from the movie Hostel started flashing in my head. Young men being castrated and lynched to satisfy the fetish of some rich Arab.

I couldn’t let that happen. I tried to gather the might and approached the button that would decide my destiny. The voices in my head tried to stop me. But I had already turned my back on common sense. As my hand neared the button the cacophony in my head increased. I hope I am making the right decision. I hope a beautiful day waits on the other side of this button. I hope I am ready to face it.

And then with all my strength, with all the power in my body I got up and pressed the button. The sound stopped. My alarm clock simply stopped. And just like that another day of struggling to get out of my bed was over. I can simply hope the day is worth the effort.

Hollywood: You Have Sci-Fi! We Have Mythology!

Ra.one cover


Ankush Kumar writes on why we should understand the charisma of our own Super Heroes in Bollywood films when we so easily lap up nonsense in the form of sci-fi thrown by the West. A must read for all cinema critics.

Disclaimer: ‘The Rashomon effect’ is the effect of the subjectivity of perception on, by which observers of an event are able to produce substantially different but equally plausible accounts of it.

Good Morning Folks! I have just come back from watching ‘Iron Man’ their third installment of the Comic strip produced by Marvel. Shane Black the director of the movie has been someone who has executed some great works in the past, but the one that is closest to me is ‘Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, all his movies have one common element, they have all been buddy movies.

pix04 mahabharat

This write up though is not a review of the film. I have been watching a lot of these sci-fi movies ever since I have started watching cinema. We at India too have many film industries, but the one that is most talked about and often compared to with the west is ‘Bollywood’.

In the early nineties Indian television produced great epics in the form of Ramayana and The Mahabharata. The battles shown on screen were unheard of, it was almost unbelievable, that a man could have multiple heads, or an arrow could create fire to win battles. But they did and the audience was entertained. That is the bottom line my friends ‘entertaining the audience’. The writers at the helm linked it to mythology, knowing our nation’s pulse the audience lapped it up to. And they gave apt explanations behind every sequence; they convincingly linked it to mythology.

That has been a similar case with the West (Read Hollywood). The West has made imaginative movies based on the concept of future. They termed it as Science-fiction films, popularly known as Sci-Fi flicks. Not all of them have been great ones, some have been trendsetters some absolutely lame (Iron man 3).

The point is in the name of ‘cinematic liberty’ ( A term used often to justify stupidity) Hindi cinema has shown Our Hero hammer 100 people at one time, the West has shown an aircraft window being breached. (Hello! It’s a godddamit Air Force One Plane).

If Iron Man and its entire series ‘on the name of future’ can be realistic and wow, so can be our Dabbang movies and their action sequences.

In fact our HEROES are born avatars of LORD HANUMAN (something which Arbaaz Khan & Co can use in the third installment of the Dabbang franchisee), hence have extraordinary powers, we do not need logic; it’s there in our history and has been told for centuries through mythological literature.

If you the reader cannot buy this logic, nor can I that all these Sci-Fi movies make sense. And in fact if these Sci-fi movies makes absolute sense to you, then so does the Singhams and Dabbangs. The West needs superheroes generated through graphics and they can only hope that their dreams come true. We in fact live with baggage of having super heroes in our history.


Coming to this movie ‘Iron Man 3’, during the entire promotional time Ben Kingsley’s act was suppose to be the biggest evil act in cinematic history since Sajid Khan took to film making. Unfortunately he performs his level best in a half baked character and his role has no logical culmination.

The other aspect that has baffled me to the core is the kidnap of the American President! (Dude he is the most powerful man in the world), time and again they have shown him an easy prey for a lot of film makers. It is more like the ‘Phone cut’ in our industry. Phone cut simply means, when a writer is stuck and wants to take the scene forward he uses an escape route. They have the funds you see, we are still stuck with a phone!

Hence next time when you see another super hero flick do an honest critique, try looking beyond the obsession of their futuristic stars and do not trash our Dabbang and Singham heroes!


P.S: Last year when ‘Agent Vinod’ released everyone trashed it, see the movie again and see a James Bond movie, there is not much of a difference there. The critics cried ‘how can a spy romance in such an important mission? I say why not? If 007 can have sex, romancing is still less energy consumption.