Scene of the Week: Swades

Check out one of the best scenes ever in Hindi Cinema – one that has great direction, cinematography, acting and background music. Also check out two interviews of Ashutosh Gowariker on Swades.

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Here is Ashutosh Gowariker’s interview before the release of the movie.

His office, resurrected in late music composer Madan Mahan’s recording studio, is buzzing with pre-release preparations of Swades. But compared to other offices during similar times, the atmosphere is congenial. Inside Ashutosh Gawarikar’s cabin, Satyajit Ray and Guru Dutt stare at you from life size posters, as if urging the young master to pursue their incomplete dreams. And amidst all these stalwarts, in a quite corner, stands a timeless poster of Shah Rukh Khan shot against the skyline. Cross armed, contemplative, as if assuring the dream merchants that Swades will walk into their footsteps if not fulfill all their dreams.

How and when was Swades conceived?
I was writing Swades around the same time as Lagaan and my first draft of both were ready at the same time. In fact, I had the option to make either of the films that time but I opted for Lagaan because I felt the script had more bravado. After failing in my earlier two attempts, I didn’t want to play safe, I wanted to take a leap. And today, I feel it was the right choice because Swades is an extension of the issues I raised in Lagaan. The story stems from our basic self-absorption, our disregard and dismay over situations surrounding us — It’s about how easily we accept all the wrong doings — About how we always wait for someone else to clean up the system.

Does the dismay and disregard stem out of any personal experience you’ve encountered?
No, there are no autobiographical sketches in Swades. But all the research I did during the making of Lagaan played on my mind and reflects in Swades. In Lagaan if you remember, I portray only one widow and one untouchable. It’s not possible that in the entire village of Champaner there are no more widows or untouchables. But the story didn’t leave scope for details so one just touched upon the topics of castesism and interdependence in rural life and went ahead with the original plot. In Swades the story allows these details so I’ve explored the plot in-depth.

Hope and despair seem to be recurring emotions in your songs…
These are recurring emotions in life but in my songs they are predominant, I agree. It’s because we are at a subconscious level always humming when either happy or sad…

What made you set the film in a village? Is your early influences made up of rural memories?
We hail from Kolhapure, which is a small village in Maharashtra. All through my school days our parents took us children twice a year for vacations to our ancestral home. During these holidays, I’ve had my share of fields, plucking mangoes and travelling by rail but that’s not my reason for making the film. I have a studied theory, which is all of us essentially originate from the village. It’s over the passage of time that we have migrated to metropolis and overseas. Migration, both mental and physical is the core of my script.

You are drawn to noble subjects, would you say you are an idealist?
Patriotism for me is not something in competition with an outsider but something within myself. Why is that our patriotism is only restricted to the one-day matches of India Pakistan or war at Kargil? In our day-to-day life we have no qualms of jumping traffic lights, messing with public property and abusing our rights. I’m not choosing these subjects because I want to project myself noble. I’m making the film because I want to highlight the indignity of human existence. If Swades can stir and activate even a few of my audience, I would have succeeded in provoking the conscience of people.

When younger, were you conscious of the indignity and the injustice of life?
No, I was quite naive actually and indifferent to my surroundings. I was in my own world even after I graduated and started working. The consciousness seeped in much later.

After Pehla Nasha and Baazi… ?
(Laughs). Yes, after the failures. They say anxiety brings wisdom. I learnt from my mistakes and rediscovered both cinema and life. At the cost of sounding pompous I analyse in minute detail the makings of our glorious filmmakers. I reflected on the magic of makers like V Shantaram, Guru Dutt, Bimal Roy or Raj Kapoor. I discovered that they were effective because they had conviction. I needed to search myself and define my conviction. I found my identity in Lagaan and now in Swades. I look back on Pehla Nasha and Baazi as my expensive diploma films without which I could not have reached where I am today.

Was it a conscious decision to not cast Aamir Khan in Swades?
My protagonist, Mohan Bhargav called for a certain carelessness, a slightly irresponsible streak in his persona, which I felt didn’t suit Aamir Khan. After playing Bhuvan in Lagaan, I felt that the audience would not accept him saying anything against the country. Probably I’m wrong because they accepted him in Dil Chahta Hai, but I had to follow my instinct and Aamir agreed after some reluctance.

You didn’t feel that you were obliged to cast him. He starred in your film during your lean phase and re-launched you as a director as well?
You are right, morally I owed it to him and there is no justification for me to not cast him in my next project. But I cannot cheat with my convictions and if I did I cannot respect myself. Ideally, I would have liked Aamir Khan Productions to produce Swades but that would have been unreasonable. What has to be appreciated however is that this has not affected our relationship. There will be plenty of opportunities in future when we could be working together. I must add though that you should re-address this question to me after seeing the film to understand the true casting.

Now that you have worked with both the Khans, how would you describe their charisma?
Both stand for diametrically different things and yet both are heroic. One has effervescence and the other has stability. It has probably something to do with their energies because as a director, I have enjoyed the experience of working with both of them thoroughly.

Are your equations with both diametrically different too?
I started my acting career with both around the same time. Aamir and I worked together for Holi and Shah Rukh and I did Circus. Later, when I was doing Baazi with Aamir, I was doing Chamatkar and Kabhi Haan Kabhi Na with Shah Rukh. Shah Rukh always said that I was a bad actor. But while as a colleague Shah Rukh could give me suggestions, as a director he had to listen to me. It was initially awkward. He was taken aback when I insisted on a script reading with the full unit. He had never done rehearsal. But when I explained to him that it was necessary to break the defenses of the co-actors, he understood. By the end of the first schedule, we had worked out our comfort zone.

Is it comfort again that drives you to old associates like AR Rehman and lyricist Javed Akhtar?
I have an extremely productive working relationship with both. I have great admiration and respect for their commitment and talent. Being with them, participating in the process of their creativity has been for me a very fulfilling creative experience.

Why do you insist on a new girl in every film?
This is only the second film so give me a break. And there is a reason for it. The leading lady and the supporting cast form a part of a new world discovered by the hero. Even the children were all picked up locally after extensive workshops. Let me tell you that it is very demanding working with new comers. There are usually two or three stages of breaking their defenses. But when they finally relax, they surrender completely. For this, one needs to spend time with them and be patient. I did both. Those who know me will agree that I don’t give up easily.

You took almost 16 months to step out of the merry-go-around of Lagaan.
That’s not fair. On the contrary it was the audience who got obsessed with Lagaan. Even now they aren’t letting go off the film. My attachment is understandable. As a parent I could not break away from the film, particularly when success was coming to me after such a log time. The best way I can describe the feeling is comparing it to a child visiting a fair. Until the child has enjoyed all the rides and is completely satiated, she isn’t going to return home. And until then, as a father, I will have to hold her finger and enjoy the merry-go-round.

In retrospect, do you feel that Aamir Khan got more credit for Lagaan than you?
No, I got my deserving share. Aamir picked me from the rut and gave a fresh lease to my career. Had it not been for him, I would have probably given up. Here was an actor who always said that he would never get into film production but he did for me and at what cost! He was an equal and a graceful parent of my creative project.

After what happened to Aamir Khan’s personal life in the process of launching a production company, weren’t you apprehensive including wife Sunita as the production head?
There is a big difference. I didn’t go to her because I didn’t find a worthy executive producer for my production company. I launched my banner after she agreed to be the producer. We decided to launch our company because we wanted basic comfort during our creative journey. Lagaan had been a fulfilling experience and I didn’t want an outside producer curbing me in Swades. There were no apprehensions once we had made the decision. I never felt inadequate because I had sufficient exposure during my last three films. And due to my curious nature I had learnt a lot from observing.

There were some talks about you doing a Hollywood film?
Aamir and I were supposed to do it together in the wake of Lagaan but both of us are not the kind to strategise proposals. Cinema has to come from the heart. It has to move you, matter to you…to an extent that it hounds and haunts you. Like Swades did for me to plunge headlong. I have an agent in Los Angeles and he is upset because he has sent me so many proposals over the year and I have refused everything. He often asks me if I’m serious about an international project because he doubts my intentions. I tell him I cannot be rushed or pushed into a proposal. I have to follow my rhythm and heart. He is feeling frustrated because I’m refusing to make a trip to LA. He argues that everything cannot be done via email. It can’t but right now I’m not going anywhere because my heart is set in my country.

This is the first time the country will get to watch their super star without his designer wear and the credit goes to you.
And he looks good, doesn’t he? The half-sleeve, simple, cotton shirts look good on Shah Rukh. And let us not delude ourselves because he has a designer in this film too. Oscar winner Bhanu Athaiya. In the final analysis, wardrobe or performance of an artist has to be driven by logic. He has to look and move the way someone in his circumstances would, and we have merely followed that.

Link

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Here is another Ashutosh Gowariker interview just after the release of the movie.

“Swades” hasn’t opened that well.
The film hasn’t yet got the audience it is meant to. The fact that it’s a little different and even the promotional clippings suggested nothing else could’ve something to do with this. Yes, the film is a little bit slow paced. That’s because the dramatic thrust has a lot of gravity in it.

Such films do need more time to develop. We need the audience to accept the languorous pace. In today’s times films are paced like the Frontier Mail. I want audiences to watch “Swades” more compassionately than the usual and go beyond the pace.

“Swades” is being seen as a propagandist cinema.
Propaganda is generally associated with political parties. I wouldn’t like to see the ideas in “Swades” as propagandist. But it definitely projects nationalism. It begins as a story of an individual’s growing consciousness and then gets more societal.
Problems like drinking water and enough food below the poverty line are alien to metropolitan audiences. Is that why you brought in Shah Rukh Khan?
I never thought of him as a ploy to get in audiences. In fact I never got into a particular audience profile, tailoring my script accordingly. I wanted the audience to share my social consciousness. Even I’ve thought in the past, ‘Iss desh ka kuch nahin ho sakta’ (This country is beyond redemption!).

We need to break away from such cynicism. Thoughts on the decline in moral and living standards in our country were with me from before the time I wrote “Lagaan”. In fact I started writing “Swades” at the same time. To get into something as realistic as “Swades” I needed to do extensive research. And I didn’t want a research panel to do it for me. I preferred to do my own research. I discovered things about our country that I wasn’t aware of earlier.

So like your protagonist Mohan Bhargava you too went through a process of self-discovery?
Yes. And the poverty that I discovered isn’t restricted to rural India. Even at the traffic signal in the city when a child comes with outstretched hands, it’s an image that affects your conscience if you allow it to. We should stop believing that a change in the social order is someone else’s problem.

The film gets progressively polemical in tone?
The era of looking back in anger at social problems is over. We need to look back emotionally. That’s the need of the hour. That’s what “Swades” does. There’s mass scale migration from the villages to cities and from cities to abroad. We say that’s because there’re no job opportunities. But these opportunities need to be created.

In “Swades” I wanted all of us to revisit old-world values. So no… I’m not preaching. I’m reminding you of what we’ve lost. I want the audiences’ conscience to be pricked.

“Swades” harks back to Bimal Roy’s “Do Bigha Zameen”.
I’m deeply moved by the cinema of the 1950s, be it Satyajit Ray, Bimal Roy or V. Shantaram. They made films about the grass roots when our society was optimistic. Today there’s complete despair. But we need to regain our positive outlook. It might take us another 50 years to regain our optimism.

But let’s start somewhere. Every time I leave the theatre after a movie, there’re questions in my mind. I don’t want questions any longer. Let’s have some solutions. Each one of us is an expert on the problems faced by our country. But where are the solutions? To me the country’s main issue should be education. And it should be pushed as hard as possible.

Why Shah Rukh?
I needed someone who isn’t cynical and yet when he thinks the West is where the action is… contrasting qualities rolled into one. I needed an actor with an unpredictable quality about him. Shah Rukh has it. That Shah Rukh Khan could ride a train, bus or boat as he does in “Swades” is unheard of. People said: how could I make him do all this? But Shah Rukh is basically from the grass roots. Thanks to his screen image, he could look an outsider in the situations given in my film. I needed that look. Shah Rukh could be the outsider looking into social issues with a sense of dismay and wonderment.

And I had hoped his angst would affect the audience. All this wasn’t done to be clever as a filmmaker. Shah Rukh and I bonded so well we never realised when the film started. We had done three films together as actors. In “Swades” we had a ball together. Neither of us was trying to impress the other. I had a script reading with him before shooting. He had never done that before in a movie. But because of the preparation no actor looks in awe of Shah Rukh in screen.

Both “Lagaan” and “Swades” were about rural exploitation.
After “Lagaan” I could’ve easily made a happy fantasy film like “Goopi Gayen Bagan Bayen” (Satyajit Ray’s Bengali film). But social issues started worrying me. So I thought, why not use my clout as the director of “Lagaan” to make a film that would otherwise find it hard to find an audience.

“Swades” is a much tougher film than “Lagaan”. I couldn’t make it with Aamir Khan. He became too big after “Lagaan”. We had a heart-to-heart chat. It would have been perfectly natural to cast him in my next. But I couldn’t tailor my script for him. He understood what I was saying.

Did you make a concerted effort to cast untried faces?
Absolutely. It was about the protagonist coming into a new world. So everyone had to be new. The leading lady Gayatri Joshi… I met her at a party. I needed an intelligent city girl.

Will “Swades” make as much difference as “Lagaan”?
Before making a difference it will have to find acceptance. I haven’t done anything for effect in “Swades”. “Lagaan” was a formula film. “Swades” flies at one altitude. That’s tough to do. I hope “Swades” will get an audience in rural areas.

I’ve kept the narrative deliberately simplistic. I see “Swades” as more than a film. For me entertainment ends in the theatre. Then there’s the carry-home. I want that aspect to be strong. “Swades” cost more than 200 million rupees ($4.5 million). I could’ve made it in Rs.60 million. But then the mountains and the boat ride would have been shot in Film City in Mumbai. NASA would’ve been an office in Nariman Point in Mumbai. Let’s see how it goes. I haven’t made it for money. But the distributors should get back their money.

What next?
I’ve got two scripts ready. I’m going to announce it within the next three days. It won’t be a rural film. And, yes, it will have established stars.

Link

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46 Comments
  1. Author
    sputnik 7 years ago

    “Was it a conscious decision to not cast Aamir Khan in Swades?
    My protagonist, Mohan Bhargav called for a certain carelessness, a slightly irresponsible streak in his persona, which I felt didn’t suit Aamir Khan. After playing Bhuvan in Lagaan, I felt that the audience would not accept him saying anything against the country. Probably I’m wrong because they accepted him in Dil Chahta Hai, but I had to follow my instinct and Aamir agreed after some reluctance.”

    So Aamir wanted to do Swades?

    “In retrospect, do you feel that Aamir Khan got more credit for Lagaan than you?
    No, I got my deserving share. Aamir picked me from the rut and gave a fresh lease to my career. Had it not been for him, I would have probably given up. Here was an actor who always said that he would never get into film production but he did for me and at what cost! He was an equal and a graceful parent of my creative project.”

    Good to see a director give Aamir the credit.

    And according to Ashutosh – “Lagaan” was a formula film. “Swades” flies at one altitude. That’s tough to do.” “I’ve kept the narrative deliberately simplistic. I see “Swades” as more than a film. For me entertainment ends in the theatre. Then there’s the carry-home. I want that aspect to be strong. “

  2. Author
    sputnik 7 years ago

    @Baba,
    You had said something about Swades not being suited to SRK persona but seems Ashutosh chose him precisely because of his NRI persona.

    “Why Shah Rukh?
    I needed someone who isn’t cynical and yet when he thinks the West is where the action is… contrasting qualities rolled into one. I needed an actor with an unpredictable quality about him. Shah Rukh has it. That Shah Rukh Khan could ride a train, bus or boat as he does in “Swades” is unheard of. People said: how could I make him do all this? But Shah Rukh is basically from the grass roots. Thanks to his screen image, he could look an outsider in the situations given in my film. I needed that look. Shah Rukh could be the outsider looking into social issues with a sense of dismay and wonderment.”

    • Baba Ji 7 years ago
      • Author
        sputnik 7 years ago

        Don’t know about third choice but here is Hrithik’s confirmation.

        ‘Interestingly, Hrithik was supposed to do Gowariker’s previous film. “I had read Ashutosh’s script for Swades. I couldn’t see it from the director’s perspective, and therefore didn’t think I was equipped to perform the part.”

        “I wasn’t the best person to translate Ashutosh’s vision. And this was right after Lagaan so when Ashutosh came to me I felt on top of the world. Swades is one of my favourite films. And Ashutosh is definitely one of my favourite filmmakers.”‘

        Link

        So Swades is one of Hrithik’s favorite films 😉

  3. Baba Ji 7 years ago

    haha…thanks for posting this sputnik.Read this ” I opted for Lagaan because I felt the script had more bravado. After failing in my earlier two attempts, I didn’t want to play safe, I wanted to take a leap” .this is pre-swades.

    ” “Lagaan” was a formula film.” this is after swades flopped 😀

    This apart,I think AG is reasonable in his choice for casting srk but his reasons for not casting aamir in swades doesnt seem right.The real reason might be that Lagaan is seen more of an aamir film and aamir is anyway a hard actor to work with.

  4. Author
    sputnik 7 years ago

    Ha ha.

    Lagaan was a formula film in the sense of it being a underdog story. People will root for the underdog and feel happy when he wins. It was not safe however. It was risky and daring too because it had dhoti clad villagers playing cricket against Britishers in 1800. And there was no precedence to that at least in Hindi cinema.

    Swades is more a noble effort. It does not have the same underdog winning against all odds story but it is more a movie which makes people reflect. Now some may get bored with its slow pace or feel that it is preachy or think it is some DD telefilm – that is another thing.

    “The real reason might be that Lagaan is seen more of an aamir film and aamir is anyway a hard actor to work with.”

    You may be right on that.

  5. Baba Ji 7 years ago

    Aamir khans views on swades,watch from 1.35

    https://youtube.com/watch?v=gLTMzFFwOhc

    • Author
      sputnik 7 years ago

      @baba,

      So after saying Swades had no story, Aamir is doing Satyamev Jayate which seems inspired from Swades? 😉

    • Milind 7 years ago

      And he was dying to do this film which he let go off “reluctantly”. Hypocrite at his best!

  6. Milind 7 years ago

    After MNIK BEATS DG ON IMDb…

    SWADES NOTCHES A POINT ABOVE ON IMDb compared to Lagaan!

    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0169102/

    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0367110/

    Mind it–IMDb remains fav tool of Aamir fans!

  7. aryan 7 years ago

    Brilliant scene.
    Last week i have watched swades again on TV and I feel only one song is required in the whole movie Yeh jo desh hai mera. Remaining songs are just a waste of time.

  8. Tulmul 7 years ago

    To play devil’s advocate,

    What is so brilliant in that scene?? Don’t we see it every time when we move on streets… Its normal, just one has become insensitive to outside world or its one’s fav star, the scene becomes Best Ever…

    Is hypocrisy sole domain of stars, Ain’t Viewers also 😀 ??

    • Milind 7 years ago

      Normalcy is the quotient that defines this scenes greatness.Thou thyself accepted this monsieiur!

      • Tulmul 7 years ago

        So many things are normal and depicted in normalcy mode… may be most of film scene’s 🙂

    • Author
      sputnik 7 years ago

      You can be a devil’s advocate and run this scene down. But it is one of the best scenes ever because it takes something that is so normal, so common place and highlights it and makes people realize how they have become insensitive to something like this.

      I am not a fan of SRK’s overacting and I did not watch this movie when it released despite my colleague recommending it to me me multiple times because I was sure that SRK must have overacted. I saw it a few years later on TV.

      I stand by my claim that this is one of the best scenes ever in Hindi cinema and I don’t care even if the rest of the whole world disagrees with me. I know if I am right they will all eventually agree with me – may be not today may be not tomorrow may be 20-30 years now from now because truth always wins – Satyamev Jayate.

      I believe I was the first to criticize TZP’s second half and Aamir’s overacting in it. Ihab, an Aamir fan agreed with me and now lot more people are talking about the emotionally manipulative TZP and Aamir’s TZP acting negatively. But when it released no one did – everyone was singing paeans. And I am sure than in 20-30 years there will be even more people who will agree with me. For the past few years there has been a halo around Aamir and everything of his gets praised beyond what it deserves. But as I said truth always wins.

      As Abraham Lincoln said “You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can not fool all of the people all of the time.”

      • Tulmul 7 years ago

        “I stand by my claim that this is one of the best scenes ever in Hindi cinema and I don’t care even if the rest of the whole world disagrees with me.”…

        I agree as far as its IMO caveat added to it..

        I am not fan of any star and from where Ihab came and Is he the authority 😀 ???

        Being a devil’s advocate its just plain scene and I also Stand by that claim and I dont believe in world agrees me or not( mostly Me and world doesnt agree :D)

        My main aim of being devil advocate was how we change our glasses the moment star changes … 🙂

        Truth is not absolute and its not also Exclusive .. When One says what I say Is Truth and Than Honestly I Fear .. Other side can also be Truth…

        “As Abraham Lincoln said “You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can not fool all of the people all of the time.”

        I agree and I hold it for all stars/Public figures. I dont exclude Fav’s :P.
        If I have Fav than I will hold me to more rigorous questions and critique…

        I still wonder my Question was about this scene, not star and still you talked not abt scene but Aaamir, ihab and Truth and Liccoln, From where they came here …

        So you have already formed image and u r replying to that image not to me 😛 Sorry to say that.

        TC

        • Author
          sputnik 7 years ago

          We are all giving opinions. So I don’t think it is necessary to give IMO all the time.

          Ihab is not the authority. The point was that even a Aamir fan agreed with my negative observation of Aamir and the movie which was hailed by everyone until then.

          I don’t think there is any change of glasses here.

          “I still wonder my Question was about this scene, not star and still you talked not abt scene but Aaamir, ihab and Truth and Liccoln, From where they came here …”

          I did talk about the scene but you seem to have missed it.

          “But it is one of the best scenes ever because it takes something that is so normal, so common place and highlights it and makes people realize how they have become insensitive to something like this. ”

          I had to bring Aamir, ihab and Truth and Lincoln because you said this

          “or its one’s fav star, the scene becomes Best Ever…

          Is hypocrisy sole domain of stars, Ain’t Viewers also”

          And the important question is why you decided to become a devil’s advocate on a scene that was posted two weeks back? Why you suddenly decided to be a devil’s advocate on a scene starring SRK?

          Now I am not so naive to think this has nothing to do with Aamir or his show.

          • Tulmul 7 years ago

            May be i have seen it before but didn’t comment till than the hypocrisy was not Visible..

            and mostly by tag line BEST EVER IN HINDI CINEMA.

            I Wanted to see One issue based botched up Movie is master piece and grt acting( curtailing wings is not acting) and another Issue based Show is Hypocrisy and Star is being targeted…

            All issue based shows are Boring, long and somewhat seems to be pretentious, preachy but why we miss the Message…

            Days of Holy Pristine man and woman are over..

            To me Both are same… Cunning, political, and trying to achieve there objectives, whatever that may be.. But I wont praise or criticise unnecessary, Just one is Fan of Star.

            Ps: I will any day Support the Issue raised by any one than crib about personality behind it , with caveat he/she is not anti national.

            And ur reply abt Ihab and Truth U know is not Honest 😛 . IMO

      • Baba Ji 7 years ago

        ” it is one of the best scenes ever because it takes something that is so normal, so common place and highlights it and makes people realize how they have become insensitive to something like this.”

        Aamir fans are suggesting the same reason to ppl for liking SJ. 😀

        Aside,swades scene is good but I am not sure if it is one of the best scenes ever in Cinema.TZP was a manipulative film at some level still far more engaging than swades.

        • Tulmul 7 years ago

          Baba Why u poked in 😀 ??

          Did u not read my “being devil’s advocate” ??

          I wanted to show them that they are saying same thing what aamir fans are saying on SJ, that’s why I said, We change the glasses the moment star changes

          No one who loves says Sawdes was Boring, long and botched up affair but same would have been said for if star was not srk ..

          • Baba Ji 7 years ago

            agreed tulmul.sorry if i stole ur point 😀

          • Author
            sputnik 7 years ago

            I loved Swades but I also said this in my comments above.

            “Now some may get bored with its slow pace or feel that it is preachy or think it is some DD telefilm – that is another thing.”

            Well I loved The Shawshank Redemption too but then I think some may get bored with its slow pace and find it long and boring but then you won’t agree will you 😉

        • Author
          sputnik 7 years ago

          @Baba

          I said the show is not bad but I have problems with Aamir’s acting ala TZP and being fake.

          If SRK had overacted in the scene and acted like he does in Kal Ho Na Ho (with background music of aa aa aa kuch kuch hota hai) and been all fake and pretentious I would have not liked the scene. I would have called this very scene fake and pretentious.

          Hope you get the point.

          • Baba Ji 7 years ago

            ok sputnik.It seems you might have liked SJ if it had some other host.My issue with SJ is the concept.An Indian version of Oprah winfrey was just what i didnt want.As already said,I wanted aamir to go to grassroot,visit places etc.

            Aside,I think aamir though preachy at times in tzp was effective compared to srk in swades.

  9. hithere 7 years ago

    I find Swades good. But then it aspires to be a serious cinema. The probelm with scene is that, if you have lived in India (even if cities) , you have pretty much seen this kind poverty or even worse (You just have to wait at any intersection). You choose to leave to go to US for better life. I am not sure how your heart generate empathy with such scene. I agree that we change but I don’t agree that a guy wouldn’t have seen it.

    Nitpick – I have forgotten Swades (this scene is while return or going), but IMO Train scene should have come before boat scene logically.

    • Author
      sputnik 7 years ago

      Yes but isn’t that the whole point? The guy who was sitting next to SRK did not start feeling anything for the kid. For him it is common place – he has learned to ignore it – he has become insensitive to it. It is SRK’s character who is a NRI and who has become protected from all this who starts feeling bad at the situation.

      “You choose to leave to go to US for better life. I am not sure how your heart generate empathy with such scene.”

      I had said before that NRI’s will identify or empathize with the scene more because they are in SRK’s shoes. I never said that a guy wouldn’t have seen it but it needs to be looked at from a outside perspective.

      • Tulmul 7 years ago

        May be its Guilt 🙂

        • Author
          sputnik 7 years ago

          Yes you are right on that.

      • hithere 7 years ago

        My point is a foreigner who has always lived only in US would react like that but an Indian who has lived in India for good chunk of time has seen most of it. But I give some benefit to director that we change/mature with time. Same situation evokes different reaction.

        ps – In any case even with my nitpicking Swades is a better cinema.

        ps1 – I kind of laugh when NRIs say that they Swades was an eyeopener(or something like this) because “most” of them came out of India for better future.

        • Author
          sputnik 7 years ago

          Ok let me give you a personal example.

          I lived for 21 years in India. While I was in India I was fine with how everyone drives and I drove the same way. I honked like anything never bothering. The dirty airport did not even register in me when I left.

          After living for just 2 years abroad once I landed back in India the first thing I noticed was the dirty airport. Why did I notice it? Because I had seen the neat and clean airports in US, London and Dubai.

          While driving home it felt odd to me that everyone is coming on to our car? Why? Because I had got used to people driving in separate lanes with a some distance in between them.

          I was not honking but everyone around me was honking like crazy and I was annoyed by that. Why did I think honking is wrong? Because I had got used to not honking.

          Sometimes you need that outside perspective to acknowledge the problem. I don’t agree that only a foreigner can feel that and a NRI cannot. And anyways Indians who have lived abroad long become quasi foreigners.

          If Buddha had not lived a secluded life would have been so depressed with what he saw when he stepped out outside and saw with the sights of the old man, diseased and the corpse?

          Even if he was secluded he must have seen someone in his family who was old (his father at least) or someone who was diseased or who died?

          “Swades was an eyeopener(or something like this) because “most” of them came out of India for better future.”

          If they say they never saw anything like that before they would be lying – but they must have ignored it before. Well some people also claim that “RDB awakened a generation” 😉

          • hithere 7 years ago

            Probably your expectation changed in 2 years. And I think you are arguing against your own position. In most scenarios a person would run away because he has seen it all his/her life. It was not affecting a person living in India because they accept it and live with it. But since you live abroad you have an option to choose.

            “Well some people also claim that “RDB awakened a generation””
            lol..They give little push to some but I don’t think any movie has capacity to change generation or you are making Star Wars…
            I have a friend who was idealistic and wanted to go back to India after 4-5 years..Now I see him done MBA, has a house, kids…and I do’t see him in near future going anywhere.

            ps – re-edited

  10. Tulmul 7 years ago

    @Baba

    You brought full stop 😛

  11. Author
    sputnik 7 years ago

    @Baba,

    “It seems you might have liked SJ if it had some other host.My issue with SJ is the concept.An Indian version of Oprah winfrey was just what i didnt want.As already said,I wanted aamir to go to grassroot,visit places etc.”

    No its not just about Aamir the host. This was my first comment to you in the other thread.

    “The show is not bad but this is nothing new. This has been done many times before by various news channels. The only difference is that there is a star who is now hosting it.

    Agree with you Baba that Aamir was fake and over preachy on the show. Aamir is now officially India’s Oprah Winfrey and I hate that show too.”

    The intention to talk about all these issues is very good but the format is all wrong. I have never watched a Oprah episode in full. I get turned off by celebs showing all this fake concern and crying and the audience members doing those fake oohs and aahs and crying.

    You said Aamir fans are asking to like the show because it is well intentioned despite the fakeness. Ask them if they would have liked this same show if it was hosted by Karan Johar?

  12. Author
    sputnik 7 years ago

    @Tulmul,

    “May be i have seen it before but didn’t comment till than the hypocrisy was not Visible..”

    I don’t see any hypocrisy and stop accusing me of hypocrisy because I can do the same to you. You are either ignoring parts of my comments or reading only what you want to read.

    “and mostly by tag line BEST EVER IN HINDI CINEMA.”

    You deliberately missed “one of the” and making it the best ever.

    “I Wanted to see One issue based botched up Movie is master piece and grt acting( curtailing wings is not acting) and another Issue based Show is Hypocrisy and Star is being targeted…”

    It may be botched up movie for you it is not for me. I did say I can fully understand others saying it was long and boring many times before. Swades was a movie directed by Ashutosh and show me where I proclaimed SRK as great or social champion or messiah for doing Swades. It was not a TV show where SRK was feigning concern and tears for others. If he did this show in the same Oprah Winfrey format and if he charged 3 Cr per episode I would say the same things.

    “All issue based shows are Boring, long and somewhat seems to be pretentious, preachy but why we miss the Message…”

    “Ps: I will any day Support the Issue raised by any one than crib about personality behind it , with caveat he/she is not anti national.”

    Yes even MNIK raised a issue did you support that movie?

    “And ur reply abt Ihab and Truth U know is not Honest 😛 . IMO”

    Read the comments in the other thread I told Milind not to bring SRK in his comment and post to criticize Aamir.

    Funny that you are accusing me of dishonesty when you brought up the whole “or its one’s fav star, the scene becomes Best Ever… Is hypocrisy sole domain of stars, Ain’t Viewers also” in a scene from SRK movie suddenly when Aamir and his show is being criticized.

    • Tulmul 7 years ago

      On Can criticize any one and like or dislike anything…

      I didnt say, You are dishonest, Dont put words in my mouth. I said its not honest answer. and Its you who brought, aamir, Ihab and Truth not me. I just commented on Scene. Without bringing actor or his acting..

      What’s issue in MNIK 🙂 ???

      I said One fav star only When ur reply was Ihab, Aamir and Truth.. I didn’t brought them.. It Typical reaction… And Some issues are more grave and horrible than others..

      Infantile foeticide is Silent genocide happening in post Independent India.. This is Imp to me.

      Let us Agree to disagree as Democracy is all about Disagreements 🙂

      • Author
        sputnik 7 years ago

        Yes one can criticize anyone and like or dislike anything and I am not stopping anyone from doing that.

        I think I already explained why I brought Aamir & Ihab.

        MNIK was about discrimination against Muslims and brown skinned people post 9/11.

        “Let us Agree to disagree as Democracy is all about Disagreements”

        Yeah lets do that.

  13. John Galt 7 years ago

    Great Scene..I simply love this movie..I also like the scene where Mohan explains “Mai nahi maanta mera desh duniya mei sabse achha hai”..I kind of relate to it more because I delivered a similar speech in front of my extended family when I was in 10th-11th standard. That time they considered it almost blasphemous..Later swades came out and they kind of understood the point (well some of them).

    Regarding this post , I have to say this– Sputnik- you began this thread with an unrelated comment- totally not required. You should have stuck to Mohan bhargav and swades.

    Why does each thread has to become star vs star?

    Lagaan and Swades are both great movies– and it is just the fans in some people that will deliberately without any purpose nit pick faults in either. I am not talking about genuineness here..but the forced fault finding.

    • Author
      sputnik 7 years ago

      I don’t think my comment was unrelated. I was commenting on something from the interviews that I had posted about Swades.

      That Aamir ridiculing Swades saying had no story is already known but I did not know that Aamir wanted to do Swades and this was the first time I read that and that’s why I asked that question?

      And my next comment was complimentary of Aamir – “Good to see a director give Aamir the credit.”

      ‘Lagaan and Swades are both great movies– and it is just the fans in some people that will deliberately without any purpose nit pick faults in either. I am not talking about genuineness here..but the forced fault finding.’

      Agree with you completely.

  14. Author
    sputnik 7 years ago

    @hithere,

    “.They give little push to some but I don’t think any movie has capacity to change generation”

    Agree.

    “I have a friend who was idealistic and wanted to go back to India after 4-5 years..Now I see him done MBA, has a house, kids…and I do’t see him in near future going anywhere.”

    LOL. My roommate proclaimed in 2000 that he will stay in US for only 6 years and that he will make money and that he will go back to India for good. He still has not done that. 😉

  15. saurabh sharma 5 years ago

    I know some stories about some nris who were moved by Sawdes. Even my frnd’s father is really doing the work like mohan bhargav…
    i will post the link too… meanwhile you can google too…
    so for me Sawdes has awakened some people atleast.

    why he used all the songs fully is a question for me.. if he could reduce at least song timing(except Pal pal hai bhari and swades) and would have done a good promotion, movie could have been a hit…
    (sawariya and neendiya re and dekho na full songs while watching movie were like frustrating, ye tara atleast have some moves, even he could reduce yu hi chala chal and ye tara song easily.)

    I find the reason to go with srk quite convincing, and not to go with aamir too. i find his interview quite convincing…

    btw agree with sputnik on sj, season 2 is better anyway..

  16. alfa.one 5 years ago

    Dont know if the comment of @ Saurabh on the old post was just a coincidence or looking at some news ! Anyway, after reading this recent comment (4th March) I went through the post and responses. Today I read a news just after reading the post, that

    “Nasa launches Shah Rukh Khan’s Swades project for real” (google news)

    Now coming to the post, I agree with @sputnik that this is One OF The Best Scene of hindi films. The train part is simply marvelous. Whatever people say Swades is one of the finest movie.

    • alfa.one 5 years ago

      @sputnik – Thanks for sharing it !!

      • Author
        sputnik 5 years ago

        You are welcome @alfa-one

    • saurabh sharma 5 years ago

      sometime i search on tanqeed since I am new here so read old posts….
      and i was going through all baba’s post coz he and anjanpur had some argument so thought of going through some of his posts.. (though nt all coz had to sleep). and somehow i came to this post…
      btw i come to tanqeed on daily basis.. and like fan wars….

      • alfa.one 5 years ago

        U have re opened a wonderful post !!! Thanks saurabh

  17. Baba 5 years ago

    Asking Strangers For Food! (Social Experiment)

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