Mahesh Bhatt, an enigma for many, a nonconformist, sensitive storyteller, bold and brutal, who weaves stories from the emotions experienced straight from his heart. A man who defies rules not to prove a point but to make a statement. The fearless filmmaker whose heart aches, as much for a country falling apart to the loss of a dear friend who passionately has portrayed love, sacrifice, complexities of relationships through his films. Samina profiles the maverick filmmaker, Cinemascope that we are introducing from this week, on Saturdays, exclusively in Different Truths.
Khudi ko kar buland itna ki har taqdir se pahle
Khuda bande se khud puchhe bata teri raza kya hai
(Make yourself so vast that before every event
The Lord is forced to ask what your wish is)
Ageless indeed the movie Saraansh that reflects the apathy of the system, when it was made 30 years back. It is relevant even today, where one can be stripped of their dignity and brutally treated by this insensitive universe we live in. The intimate relationships, the aborted, senseless end of hope, so brilliantly portrayed with phenomenal input by the actors driven by the intensity and passion of director Mahesh Bhatt.
One cannot but salute the man whose heart speaks through his craft, be it the turmoil of the parents in Saraansh to the unwed mother’s selfless acceptance of her love in Zakhm, and the son’s dilemma at learning of his mother’s faith.
Mahesh Bhatt, an enigma for many, a nonconformist, sensitive storyteller, bold and brutal, who weaves stories from the emotions experienced straight from his heart. A man who defies rules not to prove a point but to make a statement. The fearless filmmaker whose heart aches, as much for a country falling apart to the loss of a dear friend who passionately has portrayed love, sacrifice, complexities of relationships through his films. Be it a bond between brothers in Naam, or an alcoholic father and his daughter in Daddy, every film has touched peoples’ heart to the core and are alive even today.
Mahesh Bhatt, himself a restless soul, is a fighter through the upheavals and struggles of life. Be it alcoholism or a marriage going wrong or even questioning his own existence and his thirst for freedom from the unknown drove him from the depth of darkness and pain to the heights of ecstasy through his journey with the Bhagwan and gurus, till he found his anchor in UG Krishnamurthy.
His craft is a reflection of realistic cinema, a stark reflection of the society we live in. With Arth, he broke the ice between art and commercial cinema and created a fusion, which got acclaimed as one of the most sensitive portrayals of an extramarital relationship. Having gone through the pain of survival in his initial days, and having faced the storm, he has been struck by the harsh reality of life. His heart beats for the pained, and he has evolved as a bolder, enigmatic filmmaker and has taken risks without bothering about the successes or failures. He definitely believes today that all that has been pushed under the carpet, an illusion we are living to the extent of being in denial needs to be pulled out and glorified or ripped apart through the medium of cinema.
His latest production Begum Jaan brings to life the explicit exploitation of vulnerability with energy passion and the power of women solidarity at the same time exposing the treachery in human nature and the futility of partition the aftermath of which we are suffering to date.
A mentor of many stars of today, he selflessly continues to nurture talent in the film industry parallel to having an identity of being the true voice of today, politically and socially.
Photos by the author.
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