Sunday, August 22, 2010

Waiting for the waterfall

A little less time to live,
A little less hour to kill
the sweet victory of the dead,
No flower power, No gentle love
Austerity that pours down streams of rivers
With no direction or commonplace
only an ire to the alive
Flooding in the woods with moths and butterflies
Never given a chance to mend ways
Rafting with the troubled souls
and rock with boats of luck
bringing a new window for love
a new age to wait for a waterfall
that flows with the righteous and the diplomats

Clear steel opacity of gleam
to nurture the life of the very kind
awakening the lifeless for every dime
it isn't the shine of the diamond,
nor a glint of the pearl
There is only darkness for now
that boasts its prevalence in all
So what do we do?
Wait for a lake?
Or be happy in ponds,
Dive in rivers?
Or keep waiting for the waterfall?

This is what we have come to and the world knows it.

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It isn't something you see everyday. These kind of movies. Not midst main-ban-gayi-teri-zandu-baam songs or hello darling or for that matter teaching-blind-girls-fight-type movies. Peepli live is an excellent composition of brilliant cinematography, story, depth, music and its claim, satire. What I fail to understand is why is there a need to burn effigies of people who produce/make/distribute films that questions the society? Why do we become so emotional about issues that are meant to serve a different, meaningful purpose? The depth of what revolves in the movie is lost with the surrounding politics attached to it.

Peepli live highlights the stage artists Omkar Das Manikpuri and Raghubir Yadav, new wave Indian cinema with a commercial producer like Aamir Khan bringing social reform with his movies and a first time director Anusha Rizvi and a brilliant actor Malaika Shenoy playing a broadcast journalist in the film. The movie sets the sad reality of the nations farmer suicides to light and gets our mind thinking to what could be next?
Natha played by Omkar is a farmer who is going to commit suicide in order to receive compensation of a lakh to his family which would help them in dire times. The film picks up speed with the characters shaping up brilliantly, along with their ability, proficiency to act and their understanding of the script that convinces the audience. You could either despise them, like them or feel sorry for them.

Movies like Peepli live, sometimes get undeserved defamation with unions and communities getting offended by a sentence, clip, name in the movie that supports no ground rule of morality being disturbed. Are we that worried about who is turning in their graves, who is finding this personal? Or are we afraid of a false reality coming and biting us in the ass? Mailaka's persistent and annoying character of a broadcast journalist in the movie raises a few eyebrows of how the media has fallen down and what according to people journalists have become. My very worried mother asked me again, "Is this what you people do?"
And what do I answer emphatically? "Argh, I'm in print mom!"
But that's not the answer to that question is it? What are we doing today? Running around stories, stretching them till they bleed and die? We, as journalists, don't remind ourselves of what we do to the world. We write, we telecast and more than half the nation reads or sees it. Is it fair on our part to mislead them?

Journalism has reach its peak of reform. What we see and do is so evident that it changes people's perception. The reason why such a movie should be applauded is because it makes us understand the real message. So why not screen these movies? Maybe the fact that the movie ridicules the media and politicians isn't enough to make us understand the wake of it. The fact that Natha moves to commercialization means nothing to us, apparently.
The Vidarbha Janandolan Samiti members opposed the screening of the movie and showed disgust towards Aamir Khan to produce a movie which apparently "ridicules" the farmer suicides. When I met Mohan Jhadav, the secretary of the Samiti prior to the release of the movie he seemed sympathetic towards the people dying everyday but seemed at a loss for a cause that roasted and involved media somewhere to the issue. And now that the movie has released, a large effigy of Aamir Khan was burnt by his colleagues and him with a group of widowed women.

The question remains, Why?