Bollywood shares a love-hate relationship with Indian politics; they love to depict the level of corruption and contempt associated with Desi Raajneeti. Politically charged films in Bollywood generally discuss power, bribery and dishonesty associated with this particular line. Back in the day, politically charged films were unaccepted and quickly dismissed by Indian audiences. More recently this has changed especially since more of the youth in India are looking to make a difference in modern day India. And of course, these very films create much ruckus among real-life leaders, who jump at the chance to rapidly take a stand claiming that Indian politics is uncorrupt and honest. This June, socio-political fans are in for a huge treat with not one but two politically charged films hitting cinemas: Prakash Jha’sRaajneeti and Mehul Kumar’s Krantiveer 2: The Revolution. Both Prakash Jha and Mehul Kumar are known for their keen interest in Indian politics.
While Jha’s previous projects include a number of socially impactful award-winning films including Damal and Mrityudand, as he walked into the new millennium, his films became more politically involved with Gangajaal and Apaharan being two films which gained him National Awards. His upcoming film, Raajneeti not only boasts of a colossal cast but is also considered a contemporary version of the epic Mahabharata. Additionally, Raajneeti is expected to openly expose the underlying filth that exists in modern Indian politics.
Mehul Kumar is back after a six year hiatus. The award winning director has made a number of controversial films including the prequel to his upcoming film. Krantiveer starred Dimple Kapadia and Nana Patekar who played revolutionists out to make a difference in society. He then went on to make Jaago, a film which fetched him rave reviews and accolades. However, the depiction of a young girl’s brutal rape in a train and her mother’s determination to find the rapists and gain justice proved to a bit too honest for Indian audiences who quickly dismissed the film. His latest offering is a sequel to his 1994 prequel, Krantiveer. The newer version is meant to open the eyes of the yuva (youth) in India, encouraging them to take a stand in order to make a difference and free India from violence, terrorism and corruption. The young cast is headed by the directors daughter, Jahan Bloch, is convinced that Krantiveer 2 will start a much needed youth revolution in India.
Raajneeti and Krantiveer 2: The Revolution will join a number of films that are already a part of a large list of socio-political films that Bollywood have gained immense critical acclaim. In light of the two politically charged films that are releasing, we take a quick look-see at some of our favorite politically charged films from the past. Here’s celebrating the best in socio-political films courtesy of Bollywood!
Sarkar and Sarkar Raj: While the prequel was better received than the sequel, both films basically followed the life of an overlord known as Sarkar played by Amitabh Bachchan. Director Ram Gopal Varma has repeatedly spoken of the resemblance that the character of Bachchan had to political leader Bal Thackeray and the story itself is an adaptation of the Mumbai underworld and mafia.
Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi: Set in the seventies in a time known as the Indian Emergency, the lives of three youngsters is forever changed. Corruption and greed become a part of the lives of the friends who await a revolution to occur and free them of the cycle they have become a part of. While the film failed at the box office, the film is considered a work of art in its genre.
Satta: Raveena Tandon plays an abused and bruised wife who gives up on her marriage only to walk out and become a politician. Satta became a film that changed the face of women in Indian politics as it showed the rise and essential role of women in the line of work.
Yuva: Mani Ratnam’s Yuva spoke of the youth and their rise to power as they are told continually that they are incapable of taking on the responsibilities that come with running a country. The film went on to become a rage with the youngsters who realized the need to stand up and finally voice their opinions.
Gulaal: Politics gets grimier as you head toward the North of the country. It took Anurag Kashyap’s Gulaal to portray the lengths to which the royalty in Rajasthan would go to in order to gain power over the local government. Critics loved this one.
Nayak: Nayak proved that if the common man wants, he can take on the entire country. Anil Kapoor plays a local journalist who becomes the Chief Minister for a day only to do an overly apt job. This is the common man at his best!
Films with a political theme in Bollywood have been around for years – just as long as many politicians in fact. This month, your favorite stars are out to make quite a political impression on you. It’s raining politics this June and this is your only way to beat the heat outside!