Considered one of India's finest film makers, its not just his films that I admire. I mean, yes Black Friday and Dev D are my favourites, the former for its courage and the latter, for its honesty. But there is more to Anurag Kashyap than what his films tell about him. I've been reading his blog on PFC now and then and today I came across this, something he wrote in November 2007, after the release and extensive negative criticism of No Smoking. Not having watched the film, even if all that's been said about it is right here, Kashyap is brutally protective of his ideas and justifies his supreme confidence in himself. I loved reading it and I know this will influence my thinking, atleast for sometime.
IN DEFENCE OF "I"
You know when they bring up their children in the mountains, especially in tibet, and their child sees the burning firewood and walks to it, they let him, when he wants to touch it, they let him, when he touches it and screams and cries, they let him , they ignore him, and that’s how the child learns to deal with fire..this is also what the monks do..
My dad always said something that i never forgot..he said “poot sapoot to ka dhan sanchay poot kapoot to ka dhan sanchay”.. it means why do you save money for your children, If your son is a good son he will earn his own, if he turns out to be a brat he will throw it away.. and he never did save and all three of us are independent and had never taken from him, since we left college..
I know a lot of people right here on pfc who wants to be filmmakers but can’t because they do not have the heart to lose their sense of security.. a lot of people do the mundane jobs they don’t want to but do not step out because they get insecure.. rahoonga kahan, khaoonga kya, paise kahan se aayenge, i can love them but not respect them.. the best way to make anyone an individual self is to abandon them.. when you do they stand up on their own and they do not need role models, they go out and do it because there is an urgent need to survive.. that need takes over everything..i write this because people ask me that why did i not explain the end.. You know in Black friday the end was explained, and everyone called it great cinema and they will watch it a zillion times but in the end it remains just that, great cinema..it has stopped bothering people, they don’t think about the 93 bomb blasts.. they do not think about the lives lost, the politics, nothing, they revisist their favourite sequences and say wow and that’s it.. i do not remember such heated discussion anywhere after the BF release, i even tried to initiate it but none happenned.. One lone post was about continuity jerks and cinema issues.. none about the event.. with NS all that has changed..
Why does everyone want to get it? and will you still like it if you do get it? wouldn’t you say-that’s it!!! is that all you were trying to say..
why the eagerness to gen(e)re[alize] everything? why the symbols used have to be perfect? aren’t symbols about “what’s the best way i can say what i want to say, because what i want to say i already know, and i also know if i say it directly they wouldn’t let me” .. so if i do not find the perfect symbolism should i not say it? should i shut up? looks like? should i let go of my soul? what does my soul signify? is it not me? me with my imperfections?
No smoking does not make a valid point, it tortures you and then laughs at you, the same way i have felt the world do..forget the end.. lets come to the begining.. did anyone read what it said, what the film is about is spoken in the three captions in the beginning, but no one wants to connect.. who is abbas, he is a writer, he has lost his two fingers, the ones with which he holds the cigarette and also holds the pen, what does the pen mean to a writer, freedom of expression, and abbas’s freedom is taken, he is soulless and he doesn’t feel anything even while manipulating his friend, and what does he want the most more than his friends, his freedom back.. did anyone decipher that .. no.. they were too busy being thrilled..did anyone listened to what baba had to say.. he did not agree with democracy, he had his own take on it, he is the man who deems himself more powerful which he is, he thrives on who, minorities(woman in veils) and underprivileged(dwarfs) and his fanatics(teeka toting henchmen).. he lives in his own hell..which is hell from the audiences POV.. when K enters there he wishes for an elevator and a much more straighter designs, not the maze of stairs.. he does it straight.. but baba doesn’t..you see the man’s entry but never his exit.. did anyone think of it .. no.. did anyone listen to baba saying aatma, antaratma, bhogi hoti hai use mukt karna padta hai..if you really heard that.. the ending won’t be so strange..there is a definition of democracy i used in GULAAL and tried to use in GURU..
“Democracy is for the (Powerful) people
By the (Powerful) people
Of the (Powerful) people”
the wife, when she decides to leave her husband, she plays inky pinky ponky.. the man to her is as inconsequential as his cigarette, the wife and the secretary .. two different facets of a woman a man wants to see, the complex, dignified trophy wife and the completely servile slut, and what kind of a man is he.. an arrogant fuck up, not the man you would look up to or sympathise with.. do men like those exist.. yes they do.. i am a similar asshole or was or maybe still is.. just more aware that i am a slut too.. it would have been so easy to make him sympathetic and today i really wish i did make him sympathetic.. baba bengali is winning or has won.. did any one hear the song phoonk de .. the words spoken in english ..
“you have travelled a hole…………to………you will now experience the power to change the semantic sensory feel that influences the final consequences of your journey, you are now at the limits of the multi(uni)verse but not beyond the space of this stream”
Noone heard that.. what does that prove .. that people do not listen and either they are deaf (like in the film) or they don’t want to pay so much attention.. it creates the same situation as in the film.. this film was my angst and now mirrors my life.. only difference being i know what’s happening .. it was expected and i have learnt from it.. will be more accessible next time.. i swear everyone, even the infant will understand what i am trying to say in HANUMAN RETURNS.. i need that to survive, and survivor i am..
OK so getting back to explaining what i intended, admitting i wasn’t so successful at it.. from the point K falls into the water in the police station(there is a voice over there too- jin jin logon ne poore paise nahi bhare hain etc,that connects it with the last scene), it is the journey of the soul, by which i mean the internal agony of the man, trying to make a choice, trying to decipher what did he do to deserve this, is this the price one pays for his ego, to choose between the cigarette and the bathtub, and when he chooses the bathtub he is choosing to negate himself hence being completely owned by the baba..
it is not just the body that looses soul, it’s also the soul(read idealism, belief, spirit) loosing a body.. that gets evaporated while it is watching.. the idea is lost..
Now where that comes from.. i wrote a poem on my wall years ago when i was doped out.. my idea of an ego, my interpretation of selfishness..
A big drop of sperm was falling from the sky
Mother (earth ) quaked for it and conceived it
and I bloomed out
That is how the idea was born..
I do not want to bore anyone, but that explains it ,my POV, ego comes from I and I is when you have an idea of self.. and selfishness is not that shallow definition of what you can take or gain from others.. to me
“Selfishness is the ferocity with which you protect the I”
, hence the “Idea” and to the world “your Ego”..and arrogance is just a defence mechanism that the selfish man has against the enemy..
And the fact that i have the need to defend myself proves that i have yet not perfected selfishness or maybe i am too clever and know exactly what i am doing.. my argument is should a man be punished for his arrogance.. yes if he harms others by doing the act.. but what if his arrogance is aloof.. who is he harming except himself..
there are many interpretations floating around of the film.. well i lost my authority over the film the day it released.. it was open to interpretation like any work of art or anything pretending as a work of art.. but various interpretations do provoke a thought in my subconscious.. did i really intend that, i don’t know.. the whole film was stewed over in my head over last eight years, years ago it was a straight story from quitters inc ( the first half of it, because that is how much ramu told me) , but it kept changing with my life.. i don’t even know when and how it became my story, i only realised it after writing it.. i wrote it in one flow like everyother script over two days or three..it was a stream of subconscious.. i just wrote..
and now i have learnt.. that success is important.. and i have learnt that the audienca needs to be served and i will.. but i would rather provoke them than please them, i would rather force them to go back to the world they came from than provide an escape route, i would rather unsettle them than to put a smile on there face, i would rather make them feel impotent than to make them feel virile, i would rather show them the mirror than show them a photograph of their best selves, i would rather make their nightmare come true than realise their dreams..but this time they would know what’s happening.. they will know it while they are getting raped.. they will understand every bit of it.. none are going to lose their modesty without knowing it..
I have learnt my lesson..and with that i try to say goodbye to no smoking and apologise once and for all to all those who wasted their time and money over it.. Better luck next time..