Straight talking, there are less than 5 Indian films that Jeemy has watched. In my impression, Indian films are full of singing and dancing, but lack of connotation. This is the reason why I don’t like Indian films. But an Indian film named “3 idiots”, which I have watched quite by accident, changed my opinion.
First of all, the Chinese name of the film (三傻大闹宝莱坞) is very inappropriate, which give me a feeling that it’s just a nonsense comedy.That almost make me miss the excellent work. In fact, the content of the film is not as easily as whose title (in Chinese) shown.
The film is full of all kinds of conflicts, such as conflict between new and old idialogocal, poor man and rich man, ideal and reality, and so on. So that I don’t feel tedious until the end of the 2-and-a-half-hours film. In addition, it reflect shortcomings of the current education in Indian unabashedly. These issues are not only exist in India but also in China. Stiff, rigid, examination-oriented education, the pursuit of fame, abuse of power, all the problems are hindering the development of education. In some respects, the situation in China is even worse than India.
Most of the traditional Chinese culture is worth preserving. At the same time, there is something outdated and pedantic. In the field of education, the worst thing is paying attention on academic qualifications but not ability, which is deep-rooted in Chinese tradition. In India, China, and other traditionalist contries, most of people cannot choose the direction of learning or kind of job according to their own interests. Of course, the social security system of these contries is developing, people will make decision more conservatively. However, obstruction brought by traditional concept is more powerful than the practical difficulties. For example, forensic is an unpopular occupation in old China, because they worked arround the dead body day by day, which is considered to be ominous. Although forensic income is higher than average, they must face many obstacles in marriage and many other occasions. In some cases, if you do not follow the tradition, you will be declared to be a loser.
Rancho (Phunsukh Wangdu, played by Aamir Khan) is such a person who haven’t stayed in a rut. He strived for his dreams, he often broke the routine, and he dared to challenge the authority. From this perspective, he is a complete idiot. When difficulties were coming, Rancho always told to his friends: All is well. The sentence become the most classic line of the film naturally. This is very similar to the spiritual victory created by Ah-Q (A figure in Luxun’s novel), so you can confirm once again that Rancho is a big fool. Under his influence, his two friends, Farhan Qureshi (Played by Madhavan) and Raju Rastogi (Player by Sharman Joshi) were trying to break the bonds of convention. In the film, the end is so perfect. I’m afraid that, if Rancho and his friends lived in our real life, they would be so miserable.
I have a feeling that the film is not “Made In India”. In the eyes of many Chinese, India should be much worse than China. We tend to classified India as a “Third World” country. In our impression, India should be like this: they were lack of infrastructure, the country was being in turmoil, qualities of the Indian people were poor. Even the best university in the country should be a dilapidated one. If you must use a color to describe this country, it must be gray, evenly maybe black.
But the India in the film was a more better one. It’s bright and full of positive energy. This is not because of concealling the social contradiction deliberately. On the contrary, it hasn’t been denied the problems that exist in the current Indian society. But why the image of India seems to be better? The film tell us that Indian society is not perfect, but the Indians are able to recognize their own shortcomings, and they have courage to face it. Their lifes are not beautiful, but full of hope.
Similarly, there are a lot of social problems in China. But there ware no films like “3 idiots” which dared to point out these problems. Actually, the biggest problem in China is not the problem itself, but daren’t to face up to the existence of the problem. In a sense, we are living in a fake world which we made it by ourselves for a long time. So, who is idiot? We are all idiots!
By Jeemy, Jan. 20, 2013