Whether it’s the death threat to Bhansali for “Padmavati” or to Stanley Kubrick for “clockwork orange ” is insigficant, because everytime a filmmaker is threatened or a movie is banned and creative liberties curbed we prove our immaturity and inability as a race to accept a difference of opinion. Not just movies, we cannot keep any creation off the limits of censorship. In fact, the go-to book of dreams, Alice in wonderland was banned for several years after publication, because it allegedly promoted drug-use !!
From poems to plays, everything reaches the mass only after passing the tests of the all-affirming glasses of the old and the wise carrying on their arms the Paramount responsibility of deciding what’s right for the citizens.
We ban commercial movies for not being historically sound and ban historical movies (take Duck soup for example ) for being controversial… Are we really insane enough to not be able to differentiate between historical films or biopics and commercial day-to-day films that are simply inspired from certain aspects of historical incidents!??
If the sentiment of the mass population is so easily hurt, then why is Amish Tripathy not banned himself!! Aren’t the old and the wise ready to take on the best of his works as advertant manipulation of mythological stories yet? Or is filmmaking suddenly so different from storytelling !! Or does India indeed intend to not let artists tell their stories their way!??
But, Let’s put all logic aside. Let’s say they are right ! Let’s say the death threats are entirely logical, let’s say if the movie’s released a huge section of people will be misguided, their sentiments will be hurt. But what about the thousands of other things that should be banned for the same reason then!!?
What about the tons of advertisments promoting racism based on the oh-so-absurd claim that being fair gets you great jobs handsome boyfriends…it sure hurts the sentiments of many gifted young girls of dusky or dark complexion !!! What about the hate speeches against different religions ! What about the screwed up item songs demeaning and objectifying women to a devilish extent ! What about the worthless daily soaps still living in the goddamn medieval era !!??
So… The answer is No!! Don’t ban any of this; because just as there are many people who accept and watch all this stuff because it suits their taste, their are many more who will watch “Padmavati” If it suits their likings!! Local realities can never decide what’s good for any country, let alone India! Because we accept it or not, we Indians live in a country as diverse as a Baskin Robbins chocolate almond ice cream! And in this era of #FOMO i am sure we moviebuffs won’t want to miss out on films like “Lipstick under my Burkha” and “Bandit queen” anymore because of some know-it-all master manipulators who use the mass population to recognise their political and social vendetta!!
Cinema is the most beautiful fraud in the world… – Jean-Luc Godard