Bollywood – The second largest cinema industry of the world always being unique compared to the world cinema. Mostly unrealistic stories backed by colorful sceneries, filled with music, dance, comedy, own way of actions, dramatic dialogs and emotions are the basic characteristics of a typical Bollywood movie which proven to be a success within India as well as in few other countries. For decades Bollywood movies didn’t touch social/political issues presented in the country and become pure entertainers which might make people forger all of their real life problems for a 2-3 hours. (Well there might be few exceptions which I am not aware of)
Nature of Bollywood changed since early years of last decade as filmmakers expanded their scope in stories as well as in cinematic components. This led us witness some great movies belongs to many genres which also include thrillers and dramas talking about some crucial social issues of India. However these movies tend to have characteristics of mainstream world cinema than traditional Bollywood formula
Raj Kumar Hirani is one of few directors who tries to convey a social message within usual Bollywood entertainment formula. His work been success so far where the movie “3 idiots” was the masterpiece. As per my view his latest work PK takes that crown from the successor 3 idiots and I ll explain the reasons in coming sections
Note: This is just a basic review of the movie , Full review requires 2-3 watches minimum , so please go ahead no spoilers here
“An Alien researcher whose necklace being stolen upon landing to the earth, struggles to find it for heading back home” is the plot Hirani used in PK for humorously point out all the ill-logical religious behaviors of Indian society. It carries a love story which also contributes towards the bottom line of the movie – Humanity over religions.
The cinematic point of view
PK inherits from the usual Bollywood formula in an elegant way. The composition of screens, the rhythm of storytelling and the use of colors and music makes PK a new age Bollywood movie. Comedy sequences carries a feeling of international cinema over traditional Bollywood offerings. Dialogs holds a huge weight in movie like this and PK mastered it every aspect. There are lot to talk about in this point of view in a detailed review, which beyond the scope of this article. In short I would say expect something similar or better than 3 idiots but with less interesting songs
A man walking in his birthday suite alone could be offensive for some of Indian audience and there is “Dancing cars” (well use your imagination ) . However director successfully handles both of these cases nicely within the limits of Indian cinema.
Contribution of cast contributes lot for success of PK . Ameer Khan made it to the next level of his talent in PK by making the audience completely forget the ‘star’ and loves the PK character –which kind of rare in bollywood. Anushka Sharma , Boman Irani, Sajay Dutt and others contributes well in their capacity make PK interesting to watch
The social impact
Multicultural Indian society is extremely sensitive for anything that related to “religions” . History of conflicts between religious/ ethnic groups, protests against different types of art work , authors who are banned for entering to the country are more than enough evidence for that . As Boman Iranis character says once in PK
“If you want to live in this country, don’t mess with religion”
So the very decision to make a film which questions fundamental practices of most of major religions of the country itself a brave decision . Legislative support received by another similar movie “Oh My God” could have been be an encouragement for the filmmakers.
PK too landed in legal troubles starting with its first promotion material in which lead star Ameer Khan Stands with nothing but a radio to cover his body. But one crown jewel of Indian democracy – the Supreme Court cleared the movie where Chief justice of India told below important messages to the people who seek ban
“This is fiction, a matter of art. Don’t try to bring religious facets into works of fiction and art. You must have tolerance”
“If we interfere, we will be taking away somebody’s right to watch a movie. This is entertainment. Don’t be sensitive to these things”
the Indian society is mature. They know the difference between entertainment and something else”
“Mr. Siddiqui, the youth today are very smart people. Today’s youth is not like how you and me were when we were youngsters”
As of this moment PK broke all the previous records in Box office and become the highest grossing bollywood movie ever , indicating the people had over it
Outlining all references from the film would requires watching it multiple times , and it would be a spoiler for many at this stage as movie still in theaters. As an overview what PK does is questioning the contradictions between the concept of God and behaviors,/traditions of believers . It also tries to expose the fraud religious leaders (Sadus . Babas or whatever) . Most important thing about PK is , it doesn’t try to force some anti-religious concepts for the audience , instead it asks questions which makes viewers rethink about the these issues by them self . PK still holds 8.7 rating points in IMDB which indicates the acceptance of the audience for the film , but this rating includes the overseas viewers as well . Even if all the Indian viewers accept the film still the chuck who hates/ or will hate if watch would much higher .However PK provide nice and strong arguments for anyone who want to think as human over religions /cast and ethnics and for anyone who tries to make change within the society
For Sri Lankans
Even though most Sri Lankans ‘visit” gods time to time , it’s not their (for majority) primary religion – which people usually get sensitive about . Since Buddhism more of an philosophy / or having entirely different perspective about gods, Buddhist would not have much problem enjoying the humor PK brings, and they can question their ‘part time god visits and some of stupid traditions” while at it
Sri Lankans who belongs to religions which based on the same concept of God PK targeting , usually have moderate views (compared to the region. ) hence will be able to tolerate
Over the last few years unnecessary communal activities / ideologies emerged in the Sri Lanka which made a more progressive (compare to the region) society going backwards . Same ideologies are even used in political arena as well for discriminating certain communities. Therefore the bottom line of PK – “Putting humanity over religions” equally important to Sri Lankans as well.
I highly recommend PK for anyone who has a sense of humor and looks for a good overall cinema experience. If you are a person who believes in Gods / Planets/ trees and not willing to question them , try to be open for once and go , your thoughts might be changed .
Note: There are some sequences a kid might enjoy , but this is not meant for kids . But for youths /teenagers this is an excellent movie to watch for make them think, be more logical and human .