Sunday, January 05, 2014

Aamir Khan and the 100 Crore war on Intelligence

We have a nightly ritual in our house, where I tell a bedtime story to our 5 year old. It could be a book, something from memory, something downright from my imagination, anything. It just has to be a bed time story..

Most often, I invent a story (Have you heard when the animals from the zoo went to McDonalds'? or the one where Chhota Bheem went to Mumbai?). It's not like I am good with inventing stories, but the lights are off, so I cannot read, my memory of my childhood stories are so sparse that the story gets invented anyway, but most importantly, without the story, the child won't sleep.. So I muster whatever ingenuity I can, and basically structure grammatically sound sentences all in sequence and hope that it makes sense, all the way till she falls asleep.

Here the story that I narrate is really not important. What's important is that the child sleeps.

And sleep she must..

Now you might be wondering what all this has to do with Aamir Khan. Nothing really.

It's just that that is how I felt when I came out of the theater after spending 3 hours watching Dhoom: 3.

The story was not important, at least to the makers of the movie. What was important is that everyone be numb at the end of 3 hours, having been transfixed at one gigantic gimmick following another, so much so that everyone (well, almost everyone) believes that they had a monumentally good time, while the only people who are having a good time are those who were financially associated with the movie..

And I really shouldn't be complaining, since you pretty much know what you're getting into when you're going for a movie like this. The 300 bucks I spent, suspending my intellect, I should have spent on something more worthwhile.

Leave your brains behind at the door. That's what they all say.

The money I spent on Dhoom: 3 would really not have bothered me much, had I not seen a beautifully crafted movie yesterday called Shahid. It's a gripping, true story of the lawyer Shahid Azmi, who as a youth was trained in the terrorist camps across the border, but saw the light of day, and eventually dedicated his life trying to get falsely accused youth (mostly Muslim) who have no other means of acquittal, against a prejudiced society, and a cold hearted system. His bravery, led him to be killed and probably would never be heard of, but for this movie.

It was cold, chilling, provocative, realistically thought-provoking, and everything else that I would want in a movie.

And I didn't spend a penny on it, since I saw it on cable. Just chanced upon it at the right time - failing which I would've ended up watching some crap called Besharam (since it had Ranbir Kapoor - I have a 5 year old girl in my house, don't you know?) - and couldn't take my eyes off the TV screen.

This was a story that deserved to be told.

This was a story that deserved to be seen

This was a story that deserved the 250 crores or whatever that Dhoom-3 made..

This was a story that truly, truly deserved my 300 bucks..  


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