First thing, first! Kamal Swaroop made me feel like an idiot. A few days back I saw Om Dar Ba Dar – an absolutely insane storytelling. Battling all the corners of the brain, it crossed my level of understanding. I am in no way going to demean the efforts and labour of a filmmaker by criticizing his work. I am no one to do that. Also, for that to happen, I must have had understood the film at first place. I will have to find the answers about what all was going on in the movie. All that I am going to do is explain to one and all that at what levels I reached in terms of understanding to only fall in the ditch of intellect which others crossed and why I do not want to understand it the hard way.
Filmmakers around the globe had been making films which are hard to understand. There is this Christopher Nolan whose Memento challenged the brains of the audiences to such great level that it was only after second or third watch that you got hold of the movie. The scenes in the movie which lack sense at first glance look so meaningful after the third watch. Some other of his works does the same to us. I have always been a fan of such non linear and unorthodox storytelling which demands a great intellect.
Om Dar Ba Dar, on the other hand, crossed all such levels for me. For the complete hundred and forty one minutes, I was blank. I did not know what was going on in the movie. I tried hard to get all that I could. Every time that I tried, I failed miserably. The people who recommended the movie opine that it is not very easy to understand Om Dar Ba Dar. One needs to decode the scenes and then only would we be able to understand it completely.
A little bit of understanding that I have about cinema is that cinema is easy literature. Sir Richard Attenborough’s Gandhi is a great source of information related to Gandhi for those who are not great readers or have not read the related books.
Cinema must ease out the intricacies in literature or some other art forms. It is then only that the purpose of making it is solved. If a film is not understood by 7 out of 10 people then what message, what literature and for that matter what art are you talking about? An art isn’t art if not justified. There is a reason behind it. A particular shot, frame is art if that tells about a character. A particular song, music is liked when it befits the situation.
Again, I am not saying that Om Dar Ba Dar isn’t a cult classic. It might be for many. Still, for me to appreciate it, I need to understand it. At the end of the day, the one for whom you have made a movie fails to understand it then what is the output? There are two things. Either I am going to watch it again and again, take tuitions and decode it scene by scene or I quit in this effort and sit back and feel like an idiot when learned that I am not in the list of those who actually understood it. I would always choose to fall in the second category.
There are reasons for that. I don’t want to watch a film from someone else’s point of view. I need to have my own while watching it. I don’t want someone else to give a theory about the movie which drives it. ‘Oh! This scene describes that, that scene describes this’ will never solve the mystery. It will only take me away from my interpretation. Also, I am not ready to watch a film and then sit down to decode it.
Nevertheless, I thank Om Dar Ba Dar for raising certain questions. “What actually is art?” “Does it have to be too complex to be decoded?”
If you have seen the movie then this article makes sense. If you have not, it still makes sense. If it doesn’t make sense then you must know that there is art hidden here too and you will need to decode my article line by line. My apologies if I pissed you. Please do not presume me to be dumb if I do not agree with you.