I got a very interesting comment from a friend to my review of "Rang De Basanti". I thought the comment needed to be answered fully and thought I should make it a part of the main-section of the blog. So, if you want the full story, please refer to my review of RDB. I have quoted tafosi's comment in part and have added my response to it.
" You are right in a way because whatever you've said makes absolute sense due to your interpretation. Going by that, you will find no complaints. However, while seeing the movie, after seeing the movie and after reading everything that people have to say about the movie, my opinion on one thing has not changed. For me it is not a political movie. There was no political significance and I would love to ask the director if that was his intention. For me, the film was a character study of passionate, but flawed young men of India. They are the breed who live their life on the extreme, all about being impulsive and let the consequences be damned. In fact, the freedom fighters whom they portray, were themselves flawed. Once again, passionate yet impulsive. Yes the political message does appear to be resounding, but quite honestly it was never about that with me and once I was prepared to overlook that fact, I really liked the movie."
I don't know, Ritesh. I won't characterize these characters as passionate and impulsive. These guys are narcissistic, self-involved and their cluelessness can only be topped off by their self-love. I don't think any other thought (apart from themselves) enters their mind- of course before they loose one of their own. I don't sympathize with these guys.
And to compare them to Bhagat Singh is an outrage. Bhagat Singh was a great intellectual and a revolutionary. The methods he used might be debated, but his love towards his fellow men is unquestionable. He was 24 when he was hanged. But if you read anything that he has written, you will appreciate and understand what a complex person he was. I recently found a good site that has accumulated all his correspondences and speeches:
His now classic booklet "Why I am an atheist" is a soul-searching and bold treatise. If you give one of these documents to the characters in RDB, they wouldn't be able to make head or tail out of it, unless we are able to introduce an item number with Malaika Arora in pitching these ideas to them.
He (Bhagat Singh) and his copatriots were not impulsive- they were deliberate and calculative. When they planted the bomb in the assembly, they went out of their way to make sure that nobody is hurt in the blast and this act was aimed at solely to get their voice heard.
The movie begs to be taken as a political movie. Here are some references the movie throws our way: (i) the saffron-cald activists seen all through the movie, they could have chosen any colour, but the political ambitions of the movie had to prevail. (ii) in the first scence, when Bhagat Singh is lead to his hanging, we see him reading a book by Lenin. So, taking it as a political film, the film fails miserably. If you don't take it as a political film, then, it is even more outrageous - in this case, they are willing to use any historical figure to spice up the proceedings and introduce some fake patriotism.