Jai Ho! Democracy
- 1h 25m
Jai Ho Democracy, is an Indian comedy film from the writer of 1983 bollywood cult film Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro. It is a dark satire on Indian politics and takes a dig at the existing social and p... Read allJai Ho Democracy, is an Indian comedy film from the writer of 1983 bollywood cult film Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro. It is a dark satire on Indian politics and takes a dig at the existing social and political morass India is staring at currently.Jai Ho Democracy, is an Indian comedy film from the writer of 1983 bollywood cult film Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro. It is a dark satire on Indian politics and takes a dig at the existing social and political morass India is staring at currently.
Jai Ho! Democracy is an attempt on the part of Ranjit Kapoor—the mastermind behind the cult classic Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro (1983)—to recreate the old magic. Does he succeed? Well, the answer is Yes and No. Yes, because he revisits the old motifs with the same honesty and precision. There are moments in the film that call for unbridled joy and laughter. There are some tender moments in there as well but the high humor quotient inevitably gets the better of them. No, because the sharp-tongued criticism, dark humor, and the ambiguously incriminating tone of Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro remains unmatched.
Jai Ho! Democracy is a straightforward satire that takes a dig at the opportunistic politicians who lack the intent to act fact and according to the needs of the time in the best interest of the nation. All they are interested in is power and once they get hold of it, by hook or by crook, they are too reluctant to wield it for the benefit of their countrymen. They are masters at filibustering and often indulge in meaningless debates (both inside and outside the parliament) to cause unnecessary delays. For these political parasites, democracy is a sham. In the words of Mahatma Gandhi: "Democracy is a great institution and therefore it is liable to be greatly abused."
Media is often regarded as the fourth pillar of democracy. It is the duty of the media to act with great responsibility while dealing with issues of national importance. And yet we are witnessing an unprecedented rise in yellow journalism with the advent of 24/7 private news channels—there is a desperate urge in the electronic media to sensationalize trivial issues for the sake of TRP. In Jai Ho! Democracy, we see how an overzealous reporter blows a news of a minor standoff between the Indian and Pakistani soldiers along the LoC out of proportion, thereby dragging India and Pakistan on the brink of a war. And, viola, a high profile committee is set up to decide over the future course of action in retaliation to the aggression shown by the Pak army!
Overall, Jai Ho! Democracy serves as a great eye-opener, a relevant satire on the opportunistic politicians and the irresponsible media. And while it fails to pack a punch like Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro, it nonetheless succeeds in its attempt to unmask the shifty politicians and the manipulative media corroding our democratic setup. It also succeeds in delivering a message of love to the people on both sides of the border. Jai Ho! Democracy certainly lacks the razzmatazz of a typical masala film from Bollywood but it more than compensates for it with its honest criticism and relevant social message. The movie both entertains and offers ample food for thought. However, the casual viewers looking for pop-cornish entertainment are bound to nitpick in want of some pretty faces and escapism.
(This review was first published in at A Potpourri of Vestiges)
- May 12, 2015