Mr. India Technology
I am an NRI, translated into: no-real Indian. I follow Indian cinema in my quest to find only one million original films before humanity as we know it disappears. I will use the term Indian cinema sparingly because I only have access to Hindi films, not Bengali, Tamil, Telugu, Urdu, Marathi, Kannada, Gujarati and other languages.
Mr. India, an old movie starring Sri Devi and Anil Kapoor is a good example of how technology is a popular story line in Indian movies. In fact, I was not aware that computer engineering is so popular with the youth. I also did not have a clue that Bangalore is sometimes called India’s Silicon Valley.
I got all this from watching movies such as Om Jai Jagadish, where Abhishek Bachchan’s character is a hacker. The Tamil film Jeans, starring Prashant and Aishwarya Rai is about twins. Shankar the director used technology to duplicate Prashant’s character.
I laughed when I saw a Kinetic demonstration Shankar used in that old film at a mall in Johannesburg. It only arrived in South Africa in 2010.
Mr. India looks like the usual film where there is a good and bad guy. Mogambo played by Amrish Puri establishes gambling dens, pubs and other activity designed to destroy India. He gives Indians guns so that they can fight each other.
“They fight among themselves in the name of religion and caste. Mogambo will give them weapons to kill each other. When they have hacked each other, I’ll take over and make every Indian my slave,” says Mogambo.
He looks and acts like Idi Amin, the dictator who ruled Uganda some years ago. His army has a greeting like Hitler’s army, “Hail Mogambo, the king of India.”
The key to his evil intentions is a formula that will make him invisible. He can do more damage if nobody can see him. Doctor Jagadish Varma had that formula but Mogambo killed him because he refused to hand it over.
Professor Sinha saw the murder and ran away. Mogambo’s men finally caught him and also murdered him. Arun, Anil Kapoor’s character has the formula and uses it to save his children’s home and fight Mogambo. Sri Devi’s character is a journalist that rents one of the rooms in that home.
Mr. India is a techno film because of a scene in Professor Sinha’s class. Students laughed at the idea of an invisible man. “What is not possible today might change,” he says. He gives them examples.
1. If someone had said 150 years ago there would be aeroplanes, he would have been called mad.
2. If Emperor Akbar (see film Jodhaa Akbar) had heard about the radio and telephone, he wouldn’t have believed it.
3. If someone had said we can see inside a man’s body, we wouldn’t believe him. We have X-rays today.
No brakes in technology
I always think of the film Mr. India when I’m writing this blog which you are reading in California, India or Australia. I laughed years ago when I read that it will be possible to see you when you call me on my mobile phone.
My phone gives me the weather in Moscow, Dubai, Edinburgh, anywhere in the world. The questions that professor asked in the film Mr. India are still relevant today. Technology doesn’t take a vacation. It works around the clock.