Friday, February 02, 2007


AMPAS needs to fix their Foreign Language category again. WATER is the Indian Hindi film nominated for the Oscar... from CANADA. (RANG DI BASANTI was India's submission. It was also a better film.)

This film should not have been nominated for several reasons. First off, it's bad. The first 20 minutes introduce us to a child bride whose husband has died, and she, at age 7, must become a social outcast, as is the tradition for widows. This story is moderately interesting, albeit horribly paced, but it's completely derailed when she meets another widow who breaks tradition by growing her hair long and looking really hot, plus she works as a prostitute (with a heart of gold).

A wealthy Brahman falls in love at first site with the hooker and the whole movie descends into melodrama with three major characters dying before the third act even begins. The movie tries so hard to be Hollywood, there's actually a scene at the end with a woman running after a man on a train leaving the station (complete with music swell).

Skip it.


Anonymous said...

Actually 'Water' is a very typical Bollywood movie right down to running after the train at the end. People in Hindi cinema constantly fall in love at first sight. This is one of the more unbelievable cases.

I enjoyed 'Water'. It was beautifully filmed. The story line was interesting. I was, however, irritated by the typical, tie up all loose ends, suicide ending to the romance. While I realize that suicide is a form of public protest in India, this is not an example of that. A lot of recent Hindi films from 'Gangster' to 'Woh Lamhe' use suicide as a way to end all story threads. It gets a little boring.

This movie was Canadian because it created too much of a disturbance in India when they started filming. The director had to take it out of the country. It still has not been able to be released in India.

The music, a major part of Hindi cinema, is beautiful and done by one of their most talented composers, A.R. Rahman, who also did the music to ‘Rang de Basanti’. The only nod made to Hollywood in this film was the fact that the actors do not lip-sync any of the songs. I thought that was a cop-out.

I still think that ‘Lage Raho Munnabhai’ should have been India’s Oscar submission.

Bondelev said...

I know about the backstory of how the film ended up being finished by a Canadian production company (including the fact that George Lucas helped make it possible), but the Oscars really need to fix this. This was not a Canadian film by any reasonable definition.

Also, I don't know what version you saw, but the film I saw had music credited to Canadian composer Michael Danna. This may have been solely to define the film as Canadian, both for the Oscars and more importantly to get hte Canadian government's tax benefits for Candian productions.

Anonymous said...

How very funny. Both are credited in The songs composed by A.R. Rahman are Chanchan, Bangri, Naina Neer Baha, Piya Do, Shyam Rang bar Ho, and Vaishnava Janaiho.