Peepli[live]- A satire on society

Peepli[live] is the most talked about movie of this year. Seldom does a movie on social issues generate interest and curiosity in people like this film did. The debut director Anusha Rizvi chose the subtle topic of farmer suicides as her first project and left everyone from critics to the audience mesmerised with her story.

Peepli[Live] showcases an India beyond the busy roads and sky rising buildings, an India that is little known to us. The story revolves around farmers Budhia and Natha living in Peepli village who have lost their land to the bank as they were unable to pay the loan. Penniless and destitute, they come to know of a Government scheme which provides compensation of one Lakh to the landless farmer’s family in case he commits suicide.
In a desperate attempt Budhia persuades his brother, Natha to commit suicide so that his family would get the much needed money.

A local newspaper gets to know of this and publishes the story and then the entire media gathers at Peepli in the quest to provide their viewers with latest and most sensational news about Natha. The upcoming elections in the state add fuel to the fire as the political parties indulge in the blame game regarding Natha’s plight. The Government, administration everyone tries to take advantage of the hype surrounding Natha. Amidst all the hue and cry everyone forgets that the life of an innocent farmer is at stake.

Peepli[Live] is an irony on how media twists, blows and expands every news out of proportion and when people start getting bored of it, they burst it and start looking for new feeds to spice up the couch potato’s lives. It puts a question mark on the authenticity of media as they try to be the news makers from news broadcasters in the manic rush to increase TRPs and viewership. In this chaos it is the innocent people who are made the scrape goats and the very few sensible voices get diminished as it happened with the local news reporter in the film.

What separates Peepli[Live] from other non commercial flicks is the ability to make viewers laugh at themselves as it is we the people who are eager to dramatise every situation, be it a farmer suicide. It presents a refreshing depiction of a problem that has haunted India for decades. All the actors look so convincing in their performance that at times you forget that they are acting! Peepli[Live] looks realistic without being boring or exaggerated. Although the fast half seems to be a little stretched and the repetitive brawls between Natha’s wife and mother seem to be irritating at times. Nonetheless the film manages to captivate the interest of the audience as they too begin wondering about what will happen to Natha!

Peepli[live] is a film that entertains and at the same time leaves a lasting effect on your mind.
Funny, intriguing, sad, an eye-opener -Peepli[Live] is bound to make you think about our society. This is the story of the India beyond the glossy pictures, the India that everyone loves to ignore. Peepli[live] would leave you wondering, what is the cost of an innocent life in our eyes! Is it sensational breaking news, a new gossip or simply too irrelevant to be bothered about, we need to ask ourselves…

Ansha Agrawal

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