Saturday, September 17, 2022

Devgn’s Thank God is Ungodly

Ajay Devgn in Thank God

Ajay Devgn is forever cursed to waste his life in movies with feeble plots and toxic premises. The trailer of his new movie Thank God is a horrible experience that goes on for three minutes—and makes it crystal that the full movie will be dumb, boring, and hard-to-watch. What makes this movie the absolute nadir of Bollywood is that it is sacrilegious. 

A man dies and goes to the other world where he finds himself confronted by an authority figure. Who is this authority figure? There is no mystery. There is no twist. There is no conflict. There is no character development. God is right there—he is the authority figure. Without further ado, the authority figure introduces himself as Lord Chitragupta, the God who keeps the record of the deeds of human beings and is the companion of Yama, the God of death. 

The problem is that Lord Chitragupta, played by Devgn, does not look like a Hindu God. He looks like a caricature from Cloud Cuckoo Land. He is clad in an Armani suit, he has the hair style of Al Pacino, the beard style of a Pakistani mullah, and the flashy rings, googles, and boots of a hiphop dancer. He has the pompous mannerisms of the KBC host Amitabh Bachchan and he presides over a hall of judgement that looks like the venue for a subpar Oscar Awards ceremony. 

The setup is unfunny and pathetic. The distortion of religion is toxic. The brazenness of the makers of Thank God is obvious from the fact that they are releasing their sacrilegious movie on October 25, a date which coincides with Diwali, one of Hinduism’s holiest festivals. On the holiest of days, they are releasing the unholiest movie. This movie is filled with atheistic propaganda—Marx’s slogan against Hindus is there, see if you can point it out in the movie.  

If you commit the grave sin of watching this movie, you will be hauled up in the divine court of the real Lord Chitragupta who will give you an exemplary punishment: banishment to the netherworld for eternity. Be wary of this movie.


Ajit R. Jadhav said...

Consider this as an input for your tomorrow's post today, where "tomorrow" and "today" are taken rather loosely, Anoop!

Plato == Militancy

Aristotle == Civility

The ascendancy of one necessarily implies the decline of the other. Necessarily so.

Take a suitable drill and permanently fix it in, in your mind, Anoop.

With best wishes for *you*, in your endeavours to do that, should you choose to do that,


Anoop Verma said...

@Ajit: I have now realized that Plato and Aristotle are overhyped Western philosophers. The western intellectuals have turned these two philosophers as a microcosm of all philosophical achievements of mankind. I don't think that they are as important as they are made out to be.

However, on your point, I would like to point out that Plato was the civilized one, according to historian records, and Aristotle was quite militant. Aristotle was very short tempered and he often used to come to blows with those who disagreed with him. He also loved to torture animals.

There is a story given in many books that once Aristotle was so angry with Plato that he brought an elephant to Plato's garden and slaughtered it there. Aristotle and his gang killed the elephant slowly and made it scream for a long time--the animal's screams were very disturbing for Plato, who was then an old man.

Ajit R. Jadhav said...

Dear Anoop,

First of all, thanks for not taking offence at the "suitable drill". My expressions often come out with the tinge of an engineer's lingo, especially while writing, you know, more spontaneously.

IMO, Plato and Aristotle represent two cores of philosophy that are opposite on every philosophic essential. Such stable and solid (or archetypal) are these two philosophic positions that in the history of Western philosophy, they also have come to serve the function of being poles for the polarization of lesser philosophers. It's only with notable exceptions like Kant that, even when one can recognize him as a Platonist, calling him as just a Platonist falls short. Reason: Kant hit the blow to the best among the mankind rather through his epistemology, and epistemology was only in nascent stage during the ancient Greek times.

I will sure grant you the idea that both of them are over-estimated. My main reference point in saying so are the philosophic positions regarding the philosophy of the mind in the ancient Indian traditions, notably, the various Upanishad. These positions are often not fully internally consistent, and often also are at odds with each other. But the development in them sure makes it clear that regarding all philosophy in reference to Plato and Aristotle as the only possible poles, once again, falls too short. (In this reply, I've used the term pole rather in the sense of the poles of convergence in certain mathematical techniques, rather than in the sense of electromagnetics theory --- the two poles of +ve / -ve charge.)

Yet, as I said, so stable and solid are the cores of the two poles represented by Plato vs. Aristotle. Why, even some learned Brahmins from Pune have written not just articles but even books arguing that Indian mysticism is Platonic in nature. BTW, my first reaction upon reading them was: It should be the other way around; the Greeks must have gotten these ideas from the ancient Indian traditions. It's easy enough to take a *good* philosophy of the mind/soul, and then, turn the referents around and make a mystically oriented metaphysics out of it. Some of the ancient Indians sure did it. [That's why I call the Indian philosophic heritage to be of a "mixed" nature.]

Coming to closing this comment: The connection of Plato and militancy is rather indirect, though pertinent to our times in India. [I hesitated for a moment while writing it, but then did, just to pique you a little, LOL!] Platonism far more naturally implies Authoritarianism, and then, practically speaking, the latter naturally leads, in one way or the other, to Militant attitudes.

As to Aristotle and Civility, I won't argue the case. Not necessary.

Finally, note: Both Socrates and Plato survived mainly through Plato's own writings [inasmuch as we can figure out today]. OTOH, Aristotle's original writings, if any, were burned off (together with all derivative works too). The extant material is only estimated to be about a quarter, but none knows how the estimator estimated the original volume of Aristotle's own writings, in the first place! Stories like what you quote aren't reliable. Even for the extant Aristotle, we meet him only through the sketchy notes taken for self-study purposes by his students. Nothing original remains. And, none of Aristotle's students happened to be a master like Plato. In contrast, the Indian oral tradition, albeit only oral, stands out as a giant achievement in preserving the originals, even if, of course, interpolations and unauthorized extensions were not only inevitable but are also clearly evident in many cases.