“I have not changed my mind about Richard Attenborough’s film Gandhi, but it must be accepted that the film’s influence outside Indian was often very positive’ radical and progressive groups and movements in South America, Eastern Europe and southern Africa, too, found it uplifting.”
– Salman Rushdie in Imaginary Homeland.
I am reading “Imaginary Homeland” by Salman Rushdie. He has devoted a separate chapter on this movie. Also, I got opportunity to watch movie “Gandhi” before two weeks back. So, I am trying to update this post.
Movie Gandhi was shown on the occasion of Republic day in my office of Cybage at Kalyani nagar. I remember, I had watched this movie also in childhood on black and white television in my house. It was broadcasted on channel DD1, which was the only one channel available that time. But, I remember no more than few incidences.
Ben Kingsley is acting in role of Mahatma Gandhi. His expression and ultimate acting deserves the Oscar for best actor in 1982. Movie fetched total 8 academy awards including Best movie.
Movie starts and ends with tragic incidence of Gandhi’s assassination on 30 January,1948. He is going for prayer early in the morning at Birla house in Delhi and one beast like man motions ahead with pistol and shots three times over chest of Gandh. Nathuram Godse, Hindu RSS fanatic has killed Gandhi. All roads around Birla house seen jam packed with flow of people approaching for the funeral. Movie moves back 55 years back to revolve around life changing events of Mahatma Gandhi. Movie does not reflect upon reason behind Gandhi’s assassination. Gandhi is held responsible for India’s partition.
Movie starts with journey of young Gandhi in South Africa in 1993, where he was thrown out of train from first class compartment. This insult has been shown very painful. He protests for the right of Indians in the South Africa in non-violent way. His wife is trying to oppose him for his madness. Gandhi drags her wife Kasturba out of his house. Then, Kasturba in tears, consoles Gandhi that he cannot behave in such way, because ‘you are human being’. After his successful events in South Africa, he is invited in India like a national hero. He is urged to take the responsibility for fighting for India’s independence. Gandhi started his non-violence, non-co operation movement across India and turned successful events. Actual video flashbacks are shown in black and white.
I was feeling, movie would show most of Indian freedom fighters like Subhash Chandra Bose, but Indian history is too long to show all incidences. Jaliyan wala Bag massacre in Amritsar was shown very tragic scene. Gandhi starts non-co operation movement. He adapts principle of non-violence and truth. This principle was shown working like a magic trick.
Overall, Gandhi is shown as saint who has vanquished the British Empire.