The Kashmir Files: 5 Truths I Liked About The Movie
Director : Vivek Ranjan Agnihotri
Our rating :
The Kashmir Files is not a movie. Like any typical Bollywood film, this does not have a love affair between a hero and a heroine, unwanted songs in every 15 minutes, intense stunts, or slow-motion running. And that doesn't make it a movie, right?
The Kashmir Files is not a movie, it is the truth. The movie is a slideshow of facts and atrocities happened with Kashmiri Pandits in the year 1990.
Usually, a movie review is a deciding factor of whether it is worth your time or not. Which is exactly why this won't be a review. I'll make this an appreciation post for the commendable work done by every single person associated with this project.
While I'm writing this, I remember the horrifying truths shown in the movie and how I couldn't sleep the entire night. This article may give out some spoilers, so read it on your own risk. Let's begin the show, shall we?
The movie spoke in length about Kashmir during 1990 and the present day valley. What stayed common between the two eras was fear - fear of revisiting those haunting memories, fear of losing loved ones again, fear of being evicted from their own land. The characters, the story, the incidents, and the narrative was unchanged. It was authentic, so much so, that every Kashmiri Pandit came forward to agree with every scene depicted.
It is not only about casting actors who can give a great dialogue delivery, it is about bringing people on-board who can relate to what they're going to portray. The lead actors of The Kashmir Files - Anupam Kher (Pushkar Nath Pandit) and Bhasha Sumbli (Sharda Pandit) hail from Kashmiri Pandit family.
Born and raised in Simla to a Kashmiri Pandit Family, Kher's character name is inspired by his father - Pushkar Nath Kher. Bhasha Sumbli, another Kashmiri Pandit, was born in Srinagar and is a trained Kashmiri theatre folk artist. Both actors are seen speaking fluent Kashmiri, thus bringing a connect to the heavenly land.
We've waited 32 long years to bring the truth in front of the common man. Not everybody knew about the merciless genocide and ruthless killings in the valley. Vivek Ranjan Agnihotri brings out the bold truth without a blink of hesitation. There are scenes in the movie that will run shivers down your spine.
When Sharda had to eat rice soaked in her husband's blood to save rest of her family from the manic terrorists
The bodies of Kashmiri Pandit men hanging on the bark of the tree in harsh winters
The kids holding guns and other weapons
The way Sharda was brutally killed
The helplessness on Kher's face when his family was killed in front of him, not once but twice!
I write this with shivering hands while these truths are playing in my mind like an endless slideshow.
It is not just about getting into the character's mind but living and breathing it till the project is over. Many actors in the film, for instance Darshan Kumar almost slipped into depression while playing Krishna Pandit, Anupam Kher's grandson in the movie. What we saw in the movie wrenched our soul. Imagine the nightmares they had to survive and go through all of it relentlessly.
5. Two sides of a coin:
It is said that today's generation, with being more woke, likes to give everyone the benefit of the doubt. And that's what happened with Krishna Pandit. Portrayed by Darshan Kumar, the young man knew only but the partial truth. Because of which, he lived in constant denial of the genocide.
After meeting eye to eye with the culprit of his family, he was even more brainwashed about this being a fictional creation of his ancestors.
When he is introduced to the truth by Mithun Chakraborthy, he realizes how denial has been eating him up from within. Being the potential candidate to become the President of his college, his shoulders are burdened with sharing the truth about Kashmir. And when he does, the youth stands with him. Not immediately, but eventually.
If you are looking to watch a movie where you can eat popcorn and gossip about the rumored love affair between the lead star cast, you wouldn't want to watch this one. However, if you're looking for truth, to know the misery of innocent people, and a movie that has no-nonsense policy - go watch The Kashmir Files.
If you already have watched this one, which of the above mentioned factors moved you the most?