Buddha In A Traffic Jam - Review

wogma rating: The keen should rent; else TV (?)
quick review:

Ends up being what it wants us to wake up from – a drawing room conversation about the nation's problems.

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Wogma Review

Buddha In A Traffic Jam is a callout to generation next to “do something about it” in a way that it knows. Now movies like these have the typical lines of thoughts – the powerful are ruthless, the oppressed helpless. The ones in the middle need to wake up from idle idealistic conversations and find a solution. Any movie in this genre has to offer a solution of its own. And that solution is invariably one that has the same pitfalls as many others. Buddha In A Traffic Jam is no different. Strong words, strong opinions it might use, but the result is pretty much the same.

The ones in power are afraid to give away control; the self-appointed saviors believe that their opinion is the last word, their solution is the only one and that they are right in wanting the suppressed to live their lives in only that one way. Buddha In A Traffic Jam intends to show a path that gives the power back to the common man, but without thinking it through.

Of course, no one expects a film to come up with foolproof solutions to problems that have lasted decades. But, if you want me to believe a business proposal that has no middlemen from producer to end-user, you have to give me some context of how you are going to go about it without transportation, warehousing, government taxes and so on.

Also, the movie is setup such that it starts of with random exposure to the two Indias. Then it suddenly feels like they realised they are rambling and need to get a story in order. So, a story is thrown in. But, by then it is too late. Each character or group thereof seems to represent a real life part of the population and then a story of one person is jolted in only to go back to the representation mode of characterisation.

Sure, the ideas thrown around are interesting but there is something very superficial about the proposed implementation. Also, some aspects seem to have entered the scene to shock or just to lengthen the film. At a little less than 2 hours, the film shouldn't have felt long, but it does. A lot of it is because it comes across as propoganda rather than an attempt at making a good film.

Even so it is different from the norm. It has decided on making a point and does its best. It has its share of good performances. Arunoday Singh for example is brilliant and finally shows that he can act. His accent does come in the way, but it passes. Anupam Kher, Pallavi Joshi, Mahie Gill are all in good form too. They are all given their share of heavy-handed dialogue and they deliver those as they are meant to be – with reassured enthusiasm and conviction.

However, by focusing on strong dialogue, the writers have done nothing new in terms of the story. In some ways, Buddha In A Traffic Jam reminded me of Hazaron Khwaishein Aisi - the lead cast's name, the music, of course the disillusion of a revolution and some more.

Yes, there are 2 Indias. One is ignorant and thus oppressed. The other is educated, hopefully intelligent and thus happily inconsiderate. Both these sections are exploited by the ones in power – the politicians, the businessmen. The difference is the former is quiet and submissive while the latter is agitated but chooses to shrug it off. In some sense, the latter has a little more power to do something about their own situation and that of the ones in the interiors, untouched part of the country. At its best, I can think of Buddha In a Traffic Jam as throwing around one idea as a solution while asking for yours.

- meeta, a part of the audience

Parental Guidance:

  • Violence: Lots and some bits gruesome too
  • Language: Lots of abusive language
  • Nudity & Sexual content: A couple of scenes with love-making
  • Concept: The politics and business of the naxalite movement
  • General Look and Feel: An attempt to keep it real

Detailed Ratings (out of 5):

  • Direction: 2.5
  • Story: 2
  • Lead Actors: 3
  • Character Artists: 3
  • Dialogues: 2.5
  • Screenplay: 2.5
  • Music Director: 3
  • Lyrics: 3

Buddha In A Traffic Jam - Movie Details

Buddha In A Traffic Jam - Trailer

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