HomeEntertainmentIndependence Day 2022: Hansal Mehta, Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra on what it means...

Independence Day 2022: Hansal Mehta, Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra on what it means to indicate patriotism on display screen in India immediately

Chest-beating jingoism or an inward-looking expression that encourages reflection? Patriotism in Indian cinema has been showcased throughout each ends of this spectrum. As we have a good time 75 years of our independence, we discuss to 2 filmmakers who’ve absorbed the concept and introduced it by way of their works, celebrating freedom in all its glory. Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra and Hansal Mehta speak about what freedom means to them, the concept of patriotic cinema and the way it has been introduced in India over the many years.

Hansal, whose final work was the phase Baai in Fashionable Love: Mumbai, is now engaged on a web-series based mostly on Mahatma Gandhi’s life and battle. The director says greater than making an attempt to deal with patriotism in his work, he tries to be true to the tales.

Patriotism in cinema

Emphasising on the significance of judgement-free illustration of his characters and matters, he mentioned, “I don’t know what it means to show patriotism on screen today. At least I don’t set out to do so. For me it is looking at India, which is so diverse and multicultural, like a potpourri of several religions and castes. So, for me it is to look at all this and present India in all its form without being judgemental, for me that is being patriotic. It is about representation, and telling stories for love and understanding.”

“I don’t have a process, I don’t set to make films with patriotic stories. It is about me telling stories, and within those stories it’s my own conviction and the understanding of the country that we live in, is what is represented in my stories, and that’s all,” he added.

Filmmaker Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra, the person behind Aamir Khan’s Rang De Basanti, a quintessential youth-centric patriotic movie whose message was to be the change that you simply wish to see, says he by no means understood the right way to present patriotism on display screen. “It is about telling a story that you deeply feel about. It would be sitting on a very high horse if I try to explain what it means. I don’t think I or anybody else has the capacity to give an absolute answer to that; it is all pretty relative. It is what and how you feel at that point of time and then a story, and that your belief comes out in your stories. So, patriotism, for me, is a very personal expression and yet a very collective kind of a thinking. For me, it’s always been the expectation of one human being over another.”

India, by way of a crucial lens

Hansal says creating content material that makes one suppose critically about their nation is of utmost necessary to him. He mentioned, “From time immemorial, many filmmakers have adapted their belief systems to a more popular ideology of the time and they’ve represented that through their stories. There is a rare time when there is a critical look. I think patriotic films should be those which not only promote and glorify our nation and its culture but also take a critical look at the nation, at the state of the nation, critically look at the past 75 years. I feel, as a storyteller, a filmmaker, it is my duty to hold a mirror the way I see things, to tell stories the way I see it, if they’re critical, so be it. I think I owe it to my country, to my people to also be critical as I owe it to them to glorify, to promote, to disseminate love for the country.”

Hansal’s lens has virtually at all times targeted on matters of inclusion, secularism and acceptance. His empathetic tone has at all times shone brilliant, and he has consciously stayed away from tales which can be chest thumping. On being requested why he chooses that tone, he says, “It is because I am not trying to make any judgement about either side, or about anything. My films are a truthful and empathetic representation of the characters and the stories, and they’re a representation of the times that we live in. They are not meant to sensationalise or to offend anyone. I drive myself to be sensitive about people whose stories I’m telling. In that, even if I am critical, my criticism of the system is with an empathetic lens with a view to see a change, the desired change, and that is represented in my films. I want injustice and inequality to be addressed in our country. I want social justice to be respected in our country, so that’s the way I tell stories, and my bit of patriotism.”

State of nation

On being requested what he thinks concerning the altering tone of hottest movies immediately, with shades of patriotism and nationalist themes, Mehra states that the current situation our movies are simply reflecting the society.

He says, “I believe tales hold altering, evolving; they hold reflecting the instances we stay in, our society. Should you’re the voice that you’ve in your movies stays related down the ages. It’s positively not a few explicit regime or one other regime, or the political system, it’s doubtlessly about the way it has been and the way it must be, for the longest time.

Hansal recurrently faces abuse on social media for his political ideology. Does the form of abuse he faces on social media hamper his filmmaking, does it make him fearful? Agreeing that it does take a toll, he says, “Sometimes, yes, you do get concerned with the kind of hatred and the kind of language that is used freely, the language of threat, the language of abuse. But this is the world we’re living in today and like they say, ‘if you cannot take the heat, get out of the kitchen’, so I’d rather take the heat and do what I do best and continue doing it.”

Nevertheless, Mehra has a unique thought course of, and thinks that is the perfect time to inform tales concerning the nation that have interaction all, as a result of “today’s youth is well aware.”

He says, “For me, today, it is the best time to tell stories. The youngsters are far more informed because of the technology and connectivity, because of the information they have. The flip side is the misinformation they have. So, definitely the audience has evolved because they have an access to what’s going around the world. So, there cannot be a more beautiful time than this to tell stories that connect and which have the idea of patriotism.”




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