Sun, Jan 09, 2005

AmuSeen in the picture is "Amu" director Shonali Bose (right) at Fame Adlabs, Andheri, Mumbai (INDIA) after her movie on a Sunday evening, interacting with the audience. It is not always everyday that you watched a movie and realized that most of the crew is sitting around you watching the same with you.

I am not really a big fan of Hindi movies popularly known as the Bollywood movies in India; I can still count the number (less than 10 at the time of writing this article) of Hindi movies that I have watched in theatres in my whole tenure in Mumbai. More because of the fact that what I see on the streets, social gatherings, mall etcetera looks very much the same as what happens in the movies. This movie was one of those far and in between Hindi movies that I watch and liked it for its different approach of treatment of the whole subject.

Amu is a movie about the Anti-Sikh riots that happened in 1984 as a fallout of Indira Gandhi's assassination. Amu is about a girl, Kajori Roy (Kaju aka Amu), played by Konkona Sen Sharma, who was told that she was adapted from an orphanage when her parents died a natural death in some sorta plague in a village somewhere in Delhi. At the age of 3, Amu went to LA, US with her adoptive mother, Keya played by Brinda Karat. She came back to India to visit the family of her adoptive parents and she then uneathed her buried past, her past that revolve and closely knitted to the 1984 riot.

She found out that her father and younger brother was a victim of the riot, her mother after fighting through the trauma of losing her husband and son, gave up at last and committed suicide; leaving Amu alone to herself. Amu was thus adopted by Keya who was a social worker helping the displaced sikhs in post riot relief camps.

Well, if you wish to have a no song, no dance, peaceful, calm and meaningful movie, I suggest this movie. The movie tries to bring out the wounds itched in the Indian history and with a message that perhaps we will have a way to heal those old wounds. It also brings out the criss-crossed interwinded system of the society where everybody was involved, from a local thug to the police to the politicians. The movie ended with an announcement on TV about the Gujarat riot in the recent past, 2002, so it is a vicious circle and it goes on and on. By the way, the movie is in 90% english and some bits and pieces of hindi, bengali in between.