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Harishchandrachi Factory (2009) – Marathi

I was on the lookout for this one for quite a while; saw it coming on some Marathi channels but unfortunately without subtitles – finally my hunt got over last week when I got a decent copy that too with Subtitles. The Movie was India’s Official entry for Best Foreign Language Film at The Academy Award in the year 2009. It is based on the life and times of Dada Saheb Phalke – the Father of Indian Cinema. One of those few movies that kept me engrossed throughout as the protagonist played excellently by Nandu Madhav (Phalke) goes through the pains and struggles to film the country’s first feature film. How he starts it and how it all gets made is a hilarious yet informational ride for someone who has no idea how it all happened but we know how far it has come in the last 100 odd years. I wonder why none of the so many great movie makers that we have today tried this ever? Or thought of making one on the legend. It was a visual treat as well as they have really put in some hard work to show us how the world and in particular Mumbai looked like at that time, was amazing to see a Tram on Mumbai roads and one particular dialogue had us big time in splits when Phalke announces that he is shifting to “Dadar” to which his neighbor retorts that “Dadar is a jungle”. He travels all the way to London in the year 1913 to learn the technology, gets the camera, equipment and comes back putting a team of actors. It’s actually fantastic to see the whole process starting from a scratch to all the sacrifices he makes and finally succeeds in his efforts and what follows him is a revolution. The whole movie is shot in a comical way which makes it look like so easy yet it’s an eye opening account, totally loved it. As they say nothing comes easy hence Phalke had to go through solid hard work and struggle to come up with the first movie – he almost loses his eye sight watching movies day in day out, sells off his all personal belongings, including his wife’s jewelry, was on the verge of going bankrupt when finally his idea clicks and then there is no looking back for the man and the industry too. How his family and friends standby during the tough days was commendable, how they help and trust him is totally awesome. It’s a must watch for all and It deserves a good 4/5 for all the efforts the whole team has put in. Not to be missed by anyone.
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