By Pankaj Pradip Barua (Assam, India)
At the end of every day we learn something. It may not be always be the good stuff but it is always useful. Every day the experiences that we are exposed to are of different kinds because they come from different mediums. These experiences are an account of what we have gained throughout the journey of our life. Our paths that we choose or the actions that we do are in one way or another are inspired by our experiences that we have come across.
Today at the end of the day of the beginning of the year I learned something, from an experience that I was lucky enough to have. It was an exquisite cinematic experience that I have never encountered before.
This is another one of Rajkumar Hirani’s several herculean blows to the various aspects of Indian society. He questions our society on how blindly we believe our so called “servants of god” and how foolishly we think that our Hindu, Muslim, Christian monks are the only way through which we can reach our divine creator. Mr. Hirani covers all the corners of this theory (servants of god) in a simple, funny but extremely effective way through his new film PK. The film stars Aamir Khan, Anushka Sharma and Saurabh Shukla in leading roles. Sushant Singh Rajput, Boman Irani and Sanjay Dutt are a part of the supporting cast.
The film tells the story of two people (or should I say one), an alien, who is trapped on our earth because his remote that controls his ship was stolen by a man in the deserts of Rajasthan, a T.V. reporter of New Delhi who was not accepted by her parents when she fell in love with a Pakistani boy. Both their lives meet when PK, the alien played by Aamir Khan, is found by the Jaggu, the T.V. Reporter played by Anushka Sharma, selling leaflets saying “GOD” is missing. Jaggu gets interested in him as she thinks that he might be a spark to create some hot news. Her journey with this humanoid being scares her at first as she denies believing what PK says but when PK helps an old man by donating him money for the reason he sensed and not the reason he actually said, Jaggu is shocked and finally promises PK to get him his remote. Tapasvi Maharaj, played by the excellent Saurabh Shukla, is the holy spiritual leader with which the remote rests.
The quest to take his remote back with Jaggu unfolds the various aspects of blind and foolish devotion towards the fraud Hindu gurus and the stereotypical mindset of people who decide people’s religion on the basis of fashion that religion supports. The questions put up by PK shuts Tapasvi’s and other guru’s mouth. He also spreads a very interesting concept of “wrong number” dialed by the monks to reach god. It is funny, emotional and most importantly it is surprising to see the true person that lives behind those long saffron cloaks.
At the end of the film Mr. Hirani solves a puzzle that puts a dangerous twist to the story but leaves everyone astonished. This twist or the solution of the puzzle given by PK proves not only the degree of brainwashing these monks do with our mind, it also depicts how true love is not provoked or affected by the nature of his or her religion. The cast is like a chocolate cake with a strawberry on top, the strawberry being Anushka Sharma. She smoothly slips in her character and doesn’t put on an ounce increased melodrama even in the scenes of high emotion. She is vulnerable to her past but she looks out for her future. But this film wouldn’t have been half good as it is if weren’t for the corrupt Tapasvi Maharaj, played by national award winner Saurabh Shukla who gives his character a small amount of comedic element for which I will be unable to forget Tapasvi for days.
Tapasvi’s character is a key ingredient along with another one, PK, played by another national award winner Aamir Khan who is easily sweet, doubtful and smart. He raises questions like a small baby but tries finding answers like a loose psychopath. It is his difficult questions where the heart of this film truly lies.
PK has questioned many of my habits but it has taught me a lot too. I wonder will my society allow me to implement the knowledge that I have learnt of this film or not but the seed of a thought that this film has planted on my mind or many minds will one day change many habits that we are now performing. People will derive their own morals from this film in their own way. I have derived one simple conclusion or moral from PK – God may be present in all of us, it is up to us that we let god help us and the others around us.