From the glossy locales of Switzerland and Thailand, Indian filmmakers moved to showcasing India, then it was metros and hill stations and slowly they have begun believing in the real picture — rural India. We take you on a tour of our rural hinterland.
This film might have none of the run-of the mill action scenes but what it does have is an endearing love story. It is the rural setting of the story as opposed to an urbane or yuppie backdrop, that draws the viewers to it. Director Nagesh Kuknoor has the knack of finding a story even in the most mundane of settings. Dor is set in a village in Jodhpur and Himachal Pradesh and centres around two women Ayesha Takia and Gul Panag. The film highlights the claustrophobic traditions and customs a woman has to observe if she is widowed. In villages the practice of these norms are stricter than in rural areas.
There in the dusty, forlorn roads of UP, an uncle and nephew are looking for a haven after a loot. Their quest is interrupted by a gang that has been conned by the duo. Their refuge as they figure is a unknown village in UP, where they enter the house of Vidya Balan. She plays a widow who lives in this setting and afraid of being manipulated or abused uses her sexuality to hold on in the society. Bhardwaj’s films tend to be lush and baroque, set in the Indian hinterland and peopled by rough-speaking characters. The interiors of Uttar Pradesh is where Bhardwaj sets his tale. It still smacks of the feudal mindset, casteism is still entrenched and violence is the order of the day.
Gangs of Wasseypur Part 1 and Part 2
Anurag Kashyap’s latest offering is set in Bihar- a state, usually associated with Lalu, goondaism and politics. Into this land he brings story on gangster wars. Richa Chadda, Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Aditya Kumar, Reemma Sen, Huma Qureshi, Tigmanshu Dhulia and others are in the star cast of the film. Centered around power, politics and rivalry among three families, the film explores revenge through the socio-political dynamic in Wasseypur, Jharkhand, also known for coal and scrap trade mafia. Anurag has included a lot of folk music, especially Bhojpuri songs to add to the flavour of the film. The film has been showcased in many film festivals and is currently enjoying a successful run in the country.
T he film is shot in rural India and has a humourous yet stinging take to the issue of farmer suicides. What most people though would be the bringing down of the film has become the USP of the film. Peepli Live, directed by Anusha Rizvi, is a tongue-in-cheek satire on the farmers’ suicides and the role of vote-hungry politicians and the over-enthusiastic, TRP-seeking desperate electronic media jostling for eyeballs. This could have even been set in the chawls of Mumbai but no, Peepli is the foundation that the whole story is based on.
It is a sort of commentary on the situation in rural India and the director manages to do that extremely well.
This one is from director Anurag Kashyap. Gulaal is set in Rajpur a fictional city of Rajasthan, where a member of the erstwhile royal family stakes claim to the land of Rajasthan and wants to go back to the days of royalty. He wants Rajputana back from the Government of India and challenges the very idea of democracy. It’s a film about the conflict created as a modern India tries to break the shackles of its past. His history backs him, his people too, but the power corrupts him… Kashyap touches upon the issue of caste and patriotism to the land which reigns supreme over law and democracy.
Set in the 90s in the Anantpur district of Andhra Pradesh, this violent tale of betrayal and revenge stars Vivek Oberoi as Pratap Ravi, a young student who swears revenge after his father and brother are killed by his father’s political mentor. The film follows Ravi as he takes down his enemies one by one, and is ultimately adopted by a politician who takes him under his wing. Scene after scene characters are killed in the most gruesome encounters. Returning to one of his favourite themes – the connection between crime and politics – Ram Gopal Verma sets this gore fest in Anantapur, Andhra Pradesh.
Another film from the Bhardwaj stable. His movies are always successful but there is an uncanny similarity in the place where the movie is set up or the characters in the movie, most of them are Brahmins and that too from Uttar Pradesh. The likeness is so prominent probably because he too hails from the state. Omkara is based on William Shakespeare’s 17th century classic, ”Othello”, but Bhardwaj has adapted it to show the Brahmin supremacy and clout. Omkara or Omi is a gifted chieftain who heads a gang of outlaws, which include the crafty Langda Tyagi and the dynamic Kesu amongst his chief cohorts. The story begins when Omi appoints Kesu and not Langda as his chief lieutenant. The rest of the story is of how Langda plots the downfall of Kesu. The ruggedness and the rustic nature of the story is what sets this film apart.
About the Author (Author Profile)
Am a dreamer, writer and traveller. Still trying to find my niche but what counts is being able to give wings to my imagination.