Director - Anurag Kashyap
Based on the book by Hussain Zaidi
Anurag Kashyap brings forth an amazing forthright and complete story of The Bombay Riots of 92. Many would call it a 'pachanaama' - i.e. a detailed all round unbiased report. A depiction so complete, so bold and so detailed that the only people who would have any complaints are the people at whom fingers have been pointed.
The movie is in parts. Starting with actual events during those few hours of terrible violence, it then goes on to detail the socio-political environment before the events which lead to the circumstances that ensued. Then given in vivid detail is the training and selection of those militants, the detailed planned execution of the bombings, their escape and then the very public exercise of legal proceedings,investigations and the related quagmire. The movie is so amazingly complete that there are absolutely no loose ends. Any person walking out of the cinema hall will feel that he can write a thesis on the Bombay Riots.
The detailing, the vast landscapes and environments in which the movie is shot, from the sweaty slums of Mumbai, to the dusty villages of northern India, the streets of Delhi, the backwaters of the Konkan and even Dubai is splendid, showing that no effort has been spared in making of this movie. Sometimes script writers work tirelessly to conjure up stories to entice the throng of moviegoers. However looking at this movie what actually happened is nothing short of a fairy tale. The turning faces of religious politics leading to Babri Masjid, in turn causing communal tension, the planned and passionate Islamic reply, then the internal factionalism within the militants, the inter-gang rivalries and the various happenings within the Police departments would leave any script writer gasping for breath. And only real happenings can weave all these various threads into a single fibre without any abrupt aberrations. What Kashyap has done is that he has not tweaked around. He has tried to keep facts as true as they are, thus relying on the inherent strength of the storyline for the film's success. The cast does a stellar job and Kay Kay's performance is first rate.
Black Friday is however not a documentary. It is a highly informative, fast moving and a passionate proof to the world that this country can produce first class film makers. Add to it the spellbinding background score by Indian Ocean and what you have is a movie you just can't miss. Such a pity that it has been stuck up because of a trivial legal reason. If it had to be stuck up, maybe some political biggie should have lobbied against it and so on. Anyway in the version I saw there were a lot of explicit statements which would ruffle a lot of well preened feathers. Kashyap is dreaming if he feels that this version would screen without the snippety-snap.
In all I wish such films were made about every great historic happening in our nation's history(which ends in 1947 according to our text books). The fact that i watched this long film sitting on the floor of the first row of Screen 5 at E^2 without a twitch is enough testament of the movie to attract audiences. As for the nomenclature maybe Kashyap meant it as a double take on the day that the movie was supposed to be released.
Monday, June 13, 2005