Much has been written about Rajkummar Rao’s Newton and the movie has been critically acclaimed to be one of the best movies of recent times. While I appreciate good films and good performances, I do have certain concerns about sending this movie to the Oscars.
The movie is quite realistic and depicts an honest man’s struggle and fight against a corrupt system, which, as rightly said in the movie, cannot be changed in one day. Its a short movie and the performances are very good.
However, why do we have to send such movies for the Oscars, which show India in bad light? India is the largest democracy in the world and this movie depicts how the corrupt system is trying to prove this by forced voting and meaningless voting. While the situation shown in the movie is true to a certain extent in many villages in India, but is this what we want to convey to the foreigners?
My problem with this is that it creates a wrong impression of India in their minds. Being an NRI, I have worked with colleagues from several different nationalities and have heard of their perception of India. And I was deeply saddened to know that they have no idea how much progress India has made and how much forward we Indians are. When they come to India, they want to take pictures with cows on the streets and with beggars outside temples. They find that exotic. They say, “Hey we want to take pics of those kind of beggars that we saw in Slumdog Millionaire”. Have you heard of any Indians going to the USA or Europe and take pictures of beggars? And these countries do have beggars. How many of you have seen Hollywood movies that have depicted such things about their country?
While I am absolutely fine with seeing and knowing the reality and I wish all Indians know the truth about the happenings in our country; I am not OK with creating such an impression about my country outside. Because that is not the entire truth. Our country has much more to offer, is very rich culturally and economically, very diverse, scenically beautiful and advanced as well.
So, according to me, instead of sending Newton for the Oscars, they should have sent a movie like Dangal. Not because I am biased towards Aamir Khan, but because it shows that despite all the problems and hurdles faced, the girl won it and made India proud with her achievements. That shows the true spirit of India and Indian people. Despite being poor, despite being from small villages, how people strive to achieve their dreams. Its a very positive story and that’s the need of the hour, positivism.
Conclusion: No! Newton shouldn’t have been selected for the Oscars!