Thursday, August 11, 2005

T Minus 24 Hours...

OK this is officially the big one: Mangal Pandey, a.k.a. The Rising, releases tomorrow. [It was screened a few days ago at the Locarno Film Festival; check out the reviews so far.]

If the soundtrack is anything to go by, this one's got it all: the album features a mujra, a qawwali, the folk equivalent of an "item number" ("Rasiya," my favorite track), a Holi song, and a triad of heavily mythologized songs on Mangal himself. In short, Aamir Khan is packaging the film as a historical epic/bio-pic, presumably in order to avoid alienating the multiplex audiences (particularly susceptible to equating Hollywood-style "realism" with cinematic sophistication), but phir bhi dil hai hindustani-- i.e. I suspect Khan is going to give us a larger-than-life, mythical/semi-divine hero in the grand Bollywood tradition (not to mention in the grand Indian epic tradition).

And since we ARE talking about a historical figure, don't miss this high-quality blog; and check out The Siege of Krishnapur too while you're at it (yup, the book does begin with the chapatis).

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