India Masala

Bollywood and culture in an emerging India

The Attacks of 26/11: Revisiting the ghosts of Mumbai


(Any opinions expressed here are those of the author and not of Reuters)

Just before the intermission in Ram Gopal Varma’s “The Attacks of 26/11“, a police constable stumbles around with a rifle, searching for the two gunmen who had just wreaked havoc at Mumbai‚Äôs busiest train station. He slumps to his feet on the blood-stained floor and lets out a cry of anguish.

There are prolonged shots of a dead dog, fake blood squirting out of people, and much gore on screen as Varma recreates the horrifying events of Nov. 26, 2008. If the aim of the film is to chronicle these for posterity, this is certainly not how the story should be told.

Varma’s re-telling of the 26/11 attacks is shown from the point of view of a senior city police officer giving a statement to a government committee set up to investigate the attacks.

His narrative is interspersed with the journey of the ten gunmen who made their way to iconic Mumbai landmarks such as the train station and the Taj Mahal Hotel, gunning down anyone in sight.

Raajneeti: An epic nicely retold


BOLLYWOOD/First things first, “Raajneeti” is not about the first family in Indian politics even though some characters might resemble familiar cardboard cutouts.

So don’t go expecting some dope on a reality which is much stranger than fiction.