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   Movie Review : Firaaq

Director :
Starring :
 Nandita Das
 Naseeruddin Shah, Paresh Rawal, Sanjay Suri, Shahana Goswami, Raghuvir Yadav, Tisca Chopra

Firaaq Movie Review

March 20, 2009 6:23:41 PM IST
By Martin D'Souza, Bollywood Trade News Network
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''A work of fiction based on a thousand true stories.' That's a line that hits you hard, which comes on screen before the movie begins. And when a truckload of dead bodies is emptied in a Muslim graveyard, the reality of fiction strikes a chord!

Nandita Das who makes her debut as a director does not dwell on one telling moment. That's the forte of this movie; it makes a point, then moves on, leaving you to draw your own conclusions. And FIRAAQ is a compilation of many such true stories, which has helped this work of fiction. One look and you can see that there has been a lot of research gone into this project. The people who have been highlighted, be it the Muslim husband and his Hindu wife who are preparing to relocate to Delhi; or the Hindu wife battling with guilt for not opening her doors to a helpless woman chased by a mob; or even the little boy, Mohsin, who walks aimlessly on the streets in search of his father, after his entire family has been murdered.

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The movie ends abruptly with the little boy walking into a transit camp, refusing to play with children his age and looking aimlessly at the camera as the lights go out.

The film is based on a 24-hour period; one month after the riots broke out in Gujarat. Most of the stories have no connection with the other; they are individual set pieces, designed to drive home the point of the hopelessness of hate and violence. Of its disastrous after-effects, of the deep, traumatic mental scars it leaves behind. It also drives home the point of 'mob mentality', which has no meaning or direction.

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Kudos to Nandita for tackling such a controversial subject. It's filmmakers like these with steely resolve who surprise many with a conscience-tweaking product.

Rating - 3/5

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