ARM-TWISTING FILM MAKERS
Itemples and it was only a modern artist Raja Ravi Varma who adorned them with latest Kancheepuram silk with faces made up as if they have stepped out fresh from a beauty parlour. As for Sexy Durga of young Malyalam Director Sasidharan, it was pointed out that the title could hurt Hindu sentiments. Sasidharan appealed to Kerala High Court and got the ban revoked but bureaucracy guided by political power kept the ban raising some technical points.
The latest victim of the crusade against creative films is noted film maker Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Padmavati. The films is said to be hurting Rajput pride and the campaign against it has been joined even by the BJP ruled state governments. The film is still with the Central Film Censor Board, but political goondas are threatening to kill the director and heroine Padukone.
Of late, religious obscurantism, sectarian sentiments, regional hooligans masquerading as protectors of national pride are there to black-mail the thinking film-makers. Their mob power and inciting people make them unofficial censors and the Government as the protectors of a pseudo pride. n India, films are the main entertainment of the common people. After the 10 to 5 work schedule, the working man/woman has not much time to indulge in other arts and literature - reading books, watching classical dances, painting and listening to classical music. Cinema is cheap, wouldn’t take your power of thinking, could sit back and relax. Therefore film-makers generally do not touch on subjects that provoke thinking; the favourite theme is the old triangular love stories of hero, heroine and villain.
If some young producers wish to stray from the beaten track, they have to take immense risks. Financially, they will find it difficult to find money as many may not be ready to expend on a venture where the returns are unsure.
In the 48th International Film Festival of India (IFFI) that was held recently in Goa, among the films selected to be screened in the Indian Panorama by noted film professionals included two films, Sexy Durga and Nude. These were omitted by the Information Ministry. The Panorama jury Chairman Sujoy Ghosh resigned protesting against the Ministry’s action and several of its members too were unsatisfied by the Government becoming a moral police.
The Nude might have been removed from the Panorama because the prude bureaucracy thought the name might hurt the people’s sentiments. They should know that Indian Gods and Goddesses were shown half-naked in the statues of ancient