Bollywood is on the wheels of transformation and the change is very welcome and pleasant. With the change in times and trends, the genre of movies is evolving quite rapidly and with subtlety to reflect the contemporary state of life in the society. I think this is absolutely necessary and essential to the spirit of movies in a nation like India.

Rather recently, mainstream bollywood has taken up the responsibility of showcasing some uncommon stories that are not the copybook hit-formulas but are very close to life. The new movie A Wednesday is one of the classic examples where new directors are venturing on topics that are sensitive but fundamental to the cause of our society. At a time when there are regular instances of terrorist activities interfering and playing with the lives of the innocent common man in the innumerous bomb blasts all across the nation, few directors have been able to put it on celluloid to depict the miseries and helplessness of the people lying hopefully but unarmed in the hands of the government which is always retrospective in action.

What has been depicted in movies like Mumbai Meri Jaan and A Wednesday are two different perspectives of the common man in effect of the bombings, but both being equally powerful in their own rights. While the former presents the pain and the suffering each individual goes through after these incidents in an appealing fashion, it has done great justice to the ubiquity of the dependency of people on government and police. The latter is a rather strange and unprecedented story..

The director’s courage and belief on the subject was so well placed that he chose old-aged, though classic, actors for the two protagonists of the movie. A move that in itself is revolutionary for mainstream bollywood. The most remarkable aspect of the story is the courage and conviction of a common man being portrayed. One of its kind, the story strongly casts us into the perspective of the planner and impresses over the virtuous police commissioner, mostly because every person today is actually frustrated with the way things are going with these terrorist activities on an ever-high upsurge.

There have been far too many incidents in too less time in the recent years for it to not touch the lives of the common man. Bombings, open firings, strikes, and other revolutionary means have been adopted in heavy vigor and has actually been taken to the overdrive. There has been too much asking to let go on the part of the common man who is the sole victim of all such occurrences and it has for sure driven the mental balance of the mob crazy. At ends today, every person in the society strongly feels that something concrete must be done to stop all these untoward happenings. The answer might very well be on the offensive front any day.

Although the arguments presented by Naseeruddin Shah were accurate and thought-provoking, and by all means justified given the torture people are facing every day, but there is more to it that should be viewed. If violence is the means we are resorting to, then how does it make us different from the terrorists? Moreover, if this movie were to inspire more people with such radical mentalities, it is not far that common man himself becomes the messenger of aggression and violence. Then there will have to be the rising of another section of people to eradicate the troubles inflicted upon society by the so-called correcting-intentions of the common man. If everybody takes upon killing of criminals, then law and order would be embarrassed every moment. The state would remain a mere spectator and an agent to catch the guilty, only to be punished by someone else.

The answer does not lie in the measure depicted in the movie. It is good only for the subject shown and will have devastating effects on daily lifestyle. Ruthless killing would only add more fuel to the burning fire of the terrorist movements and definitely add more numbers to the list of the already endless terrorist enrollments. We have to be more careful and thoughtful in our measures to counter the actions in the long run.

Arindham Chakroborty

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