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Why Interstellar Works In India, But Our Desi Sci-Fi Movies Don’t Fly

By Himanshu Singh:

When Indian filmmakers are still struggling hard to offer entertainment in the sci-fi genre to their viewers, Hollywood directors have been able to put their best in front of the audience not only in the western world, but also in India. This has created a situation where theatres in India are full of viewers who have come for Nolan’s new release and are talking about it. This presents a moment when sci-fi films made in India need analysis. The release of this film has also compelled Indian producers to hold their films this weekend, although Shaukeen can be said to be an exception.


There can also be a possibility that since science fiction is more about moving away from you rather than connecting with yourself, Indian audience has accepted foreign superstars doing sci-fi action but when it comes to Indian actors, we cannot digest the fact that our heroes are not romancing with their arms wide open.

The art of Indian super heroes and scientific arena can be understood in following 8 facts:

1. Over Bollywoodization of Indian Sci-Fi
Indian film makers have always tried their best to produce films in the sci-fi genre, but due to extra Bollywoodization and an extra pinch of Hindi cinema masala mixture, most of them have been a disaster. This tells us the story of Indian cinema not being able to withstand the standards of sci-fi film making.

2. From Wahan ke Log to Krishh3
Be it modern films like Krishh 3, RaOne, Joker and Love Story 2050 or be it films from the past including Wahan Ke log, Dariya Dil, Mr. X in Bombay, these films have not been able to catch the eye balls and ultimately became an embarrassment for Indian cinema. This was because these films could not intelligently manage the balance of emotions and science.

3. The Hit League from Sci-Fi
But there have been few films which have proved that if a story has an element of emotions blended well around the scientific aspects, it will be a hit. Films like Mr India and Koi Mil Gaya are in that league. These films were super hits and ultimately strengthened the hold of sci-fi films among Indian audience.

4. Science vs. Emotions
But the very problem with some sections of the Indian audience is that it watches every sci-fi film with a pre-conceived thought of scientific action and not as a story of relationships and emotions. And if it considers a film as a story of emotions the angle of science is not accepted.

5. Story of Relationship
The very beauty of some sci-fi films produced in Hollywood is that they have been stories of relationships, stories of promises and stories which will remain intact even if all the elements of science are withdrawn from the plots.

6. Not just a Sci-Fi
It is a need that all the stories belonging to this genre should not only be watched as a voyage of a science gallery but as a story of humanity and human nature. If we can watch such films beyond the tag of just sci-fi films, only then can this be a true cinematic experience.

7. Shaktimaan, The first Indian Superhero
Star wars and Superman have inspired and influenced our childhood in the very sense of heroism, but the beginning of super hero culture in India starts with the arrival of Shaktimaan on small screen. However it is unfortunate that the passion among children for Mukesh Khanna’s character could never be transformed into a film.

8. And now, Interstellar
Interstellar is not just about an extra galactic world to be explored, but it’s about a promise that a father has made to his daughter. It’s about a belief that a daughter has in herself that her father will come back. It’s about human nature that still prevails even when you are in an outer world. The film is being appreciated all over because Christopher Nolan has very intelligently played with the plot by introducing an angle of poetic emotion in a scientific premise.

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  1. Debayan Kar

    Excellent Article , an eyeopener for those directors who invest crores on Sci-fi movies without thinking twice

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