I find myself really lucky. I watched the controversy between Chetan Bhagath and the 3 Idiots crew only after watching the movie. For one thing, yes, I had seen Wikipedia,showcasing the movie as based on Chetan Bhagath’s novel. That is one novel I love for being novel in concept and presentation.
We will come to the controversy later. Let us talk about the movie first.
One word for describing the movie? Hilarious.
A hilarious movie, with a strong social message.
3 idiots is the story of 2 friends searching for their third friend. It winds through totally unexpected twists and turns. The one thing consistent about the movie is humor, from the very first scene to the very last. The story is a star, so are the actors.
It is a non-stop comedy for nearly 3 hours. You will see a few jokes which you have heard or read before in email forwards. Never mind, you will still enjoy them as part of the film. I loved the way humor is interlaced with melodrama, and you won’t know whether your tears are out of laughter or not.
There are a few tag lines and catchy phrases which are too good, especially, the climax scene and the last dialog. The end was slightly predictable and it came out as expected, still the ride was roller coaster one, totally unexpected twists and turns.
Negatives? Hmm. A few of the jokes were pushed too much to the extent of “it-shouldn’t-have-been”. I don’t have to quote them, you will know it when you watch.
Altogether, I didn’t know 3 hours pass. Yea, one more thing. I never knew you could win your lover without a huge stunt without a lots of thugs, exploding cars, fire and fight. I guess I love reality :-)
The story is not entirely Five Point Someone, though you would see a few of the background information, scenes and dialogs exactly coincide. Still, it has an originality around it while comparing with the book. I would say, the movie is inspired from the story. Personally, I prefer not to relate the movie and the book. They are special and unique in their own ways.
Some critics say that 3 Idiots mocks our educational system and sends out a wrong message. Somehow, I felt that it is completely wrong. 3 Idiots talks about 2 things – follow your dreams and study to acquire knowledge first, not to win marks.
Sagharika Ghosh writes – “As a former IITian has pointed out Rancho, in the film mocks Laplace Transform, the equation written on the blackboard, as an example of rote learning. Yet without Laplace Transform, Hirani’s computer would not boot up! “. In my opinion, 3 Idiots speaks about the necessity of understanding the Laplace transform instead of learning it by heart.
The movie release saw author Chetan Bhagath coming out and saying that he didn’t receive credits for the story. He is right. I didn’t see his name mentioned in a visible way. 3 idiots is not completely Five Point Someone. Still, it has traces of FPS all along, on and off. The credit given in a visible manner would have added lots of glory to the movie and to those on the helm of the movie.
While following the controversy a bit, I saw that Vidhu Vinod Chopra, on his website, has published the contract signed by Chetan Bhagath. It says, the credits will be shown in the rolling credits. The position of the credit among other credits has not been mentioned – first, second, last?
Not sure who is right and who is wrong. Did Chetan Bhagath overestimate a contract or relied on the undocumented promises? Did the film producers exploit some innocence part of the author? Whatever it is FPS is a great novel and 3 idiots is a good movie with great message.
Tail Piece : I was intrigued by one statement by Chetan Bhagath – “Coming from IITs and IIMs and the sort, you expect a certain level of ethics from the people you interact with”. Does this part of India strike a higher standard of ethics compared to the rest of India? What do you think?