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BAAVRA MANN (2013 - Documentary) - A rare, one of its kind of documentary every student and lover of Hindi Cinema needs to watch as a must. - By Bobby Sing (Movies To See Before You Die - Documentary)

07 Apr, 2019 | Movies To See Before You Die / Documentary

The word documentary usually doesn’t excite a big majority as these are neither meant for entertainment nor see a wide release reaching the general public as in the case of commercial movies. Moreover documentaries have a definite purpose as non-fiction films to convey a well-researched and documented study about a place, an event, a hidden truth or a person (biographies) based on facts.
In other words, documentaries are basically made to inform, to reveal, to warn or to enlighten you about some facts which are not usually known or there in the public knowledge and most of the people are not aware of it. At times they make you emotional knowing about the life and struggle of your icon and at times even excite you too as a controversial take on issues that have a huge impact on world economy and politics deeply influencing the end-user.
However, this is not a write-up on any such documentary mentioned above as it’s about a rare one which not only enlightens you with the most certain truth of life, but also fills you with immense peace like a soothing balm or motherly touch if I can put it that way.
It’s a documentary made on the writer-director Sudhir Mishra, with the content, insights or flow that gracefully makes you feel calm and relaxed accepting the eternal fact that the other name of LIFE is UNCERTAINITY, which is not in your hands and there is no way you can control it as per your will. Life has its own twists and turns like a story-plot you know nothing about and the only thing in your hand is your sincerity and honesty as a person and commitment towards your chosen stream of work and nothing else.
Now, I don’t know how many films of Sudhir Mishra you have seen or how you rate him as a director (which actually depends upon how and what films of Mishra you are truly familiar with). But my affair with his films began with IS RAAT KI SUBAH NAHIN in 1996 in my post- graduation years and I have a lot to share about that time and the film in particular (which I will try to do very soon). The film was a decent success in Delhi and the young college going crowd loved it a lot, which has also been mentioned in the documentary. 
After IS RAAT KI SUBAH NAHIN, we as a group of film-lovers went on a search for Mishra’s earlier films which we had already seen on Doordarshan or on VCR (in an unaware state of mind as young teenage film- buffs) and then somehow got hold of them through a resourceful VHS shop in Delhi’s Palika Bazaar, which used to be the hub of such activities in those lively years. Thus began our journey of revisiting all the art-house Hindi Cinema since its early years of conception through Sudhir Mishra. On a personal note, maybe I more loved watching his works in particular, because many of my adorable crushes in those decades all featured in his films and I still love watching them even today feeling like a young boy. 
Coming back to the documentary, it’s titled BAAVRA MANN - A film on Sudhir Mishra and on other Indian realties. The title is actually inspired from a great song from his most famous film HAZARON KHWAISHEIN AISEE and its tagline explains it all, which you will come to know, once you have seen the complete two hours of informative as well as enlightening content matter.
For friends who are not familiar with the name or the works of the director, giving you a brief - five of his early films are in BTC list of MOVIES TO SEE BEFORE YOU DIE (though I have written in details only on two and three are still in my pending list). He was awarded the National Award for the Best First Film of a Director in 1987 for YEH WOH MANZIL TO NAHIN, National Award for Best Film on Social Issues in 1988 for MAIN ZINDA HOON, National Award for Best Feature Film in Hindi in 1991 for DHARAVI, Filmfare Best Story Award for a film that is considered as a new-age cult classic HAZAARON KHWAISHEIN AISI in 2005 along with many other nominations, wins and honours by reputed festivals and a felicitation by the French Government too with Insignia of Arts et Lettres.
But interestingly the documentary is not particularly about his best films or his average creations in the later years of his ongoing career. It’s neither only about his awards or achievements in the field of cinema nor is a detailed biographical account of his early childhood and family background as normally we get to see in such documentaries. 
It’s about something more meaningful and deep about the world of creativity, the way films are being made in the present, the way we are grooming the new creative minds since the last two decades and about all known but still never spoken about brutal truths of the Hindi film industry rarely revealed before.
With a motive of inspiring you further to watch it as a must, this two hours compilation of various clips of Sudhir Mishra and other renowned personalities related to film and theater gives a fascinating account of both his cult classics and disasters together. The films he passionately made following his guts and the films he didn’t wish to make or which didn’t shape up or released as he had visualized.  
Giving you a lot to learn, this is more about the continuing struggle instead of successes, without any hiding or holding back, accepting the harsh realities of life as they are. And therefore is a not to be missed rare gem from the director Jaideep Varma.
However, if you are still not convinced then just go through the following quotes from the film both from Mishra and other renowned film personalities. Each and every expression mentioned below is a life teaching quote by itself and hence should ideally excite you enough to go for this documentary at the earliest.
As said by Sudhir Mishra - 
“That’s the problem in India, here you get away with being half good.” 
“Dekhiye Sudhir Saab Se Miliye, Inhone Abhi Abhi Apne Pair Par Habib Tanveer Maar Liya”
“There are lot of FTII students who are far more talented than I am”
“Iss Raat Ki Subah Nahin was kind of funded – ki achha isme chaar gaane hone chahiyen film kuchh bhi banao.”
“Bollywood is not a bad name for a style of filmmaking, maybe you should say there is also Bollywood in Indian Cinema”
“I don’t know if I have ever made except CALCUTTA MAIL, a film that I didn’t want to make”
“That’s the problem of being a good man! Thoda clever ho, thoda shaatir ho, thoda idhar se nikal ke picture achhi ban jaati toh I would have helped the producers. By being good I harmed them.”
“If you have to do the popular Indian form, then you have to do it the free-way. You cannot do it according to a trader….!” 
“Everything is being obliterated, only the taste of the shopkeeper is left”
“There is a burden of being interesting”
“I think it’s important that people like me stick around.”
“That’s the end of you - If you don’t work at your peak”
“When that dynamic happens in a person who wants to connect but on his own terms. Then I think the most interesting films happen”
“I have never become that great of an artist that I could have”
But above all this is the one that hits you the hardest…….! And he humbly warns saying….,
“It’s not as if the most talented filmmakers make films – Don’t make that mistake – The clever ones make films” - Sudhir Mishra  

As said by renowned personalities from the world of theater and cinema -
 “Anybody who makes something which he or she doesn’t want to make, will never be successful because it will show in the product” - Javed Akhtar
“I may not believe in certain things but I will say it…….. because I want applause” - Mahesh Bhatt
“I have made films, which I didn’t wish to see the release prints of, imagine a director who doesn’t want to see his release print. What could be more tragic?” - Kundan Shah
“Our mediocrity is not getting that cutting edge work done” - Rajit Kapoor
“A bunch of people got together to try and manipulate the industry in such a way, to create the mythology that only one kind of cinema can work here. The kind of cinema that we forget immediately after the first weekend or two! But it wasn’t that they were wrong. They were right. But in the process they have damaged the soul of Indian Cinema” - Pritish Nandy
“It’s difficult to erase that. It will take a generation or a couple of generation to actually erase that” - Kay Kay
“In more and more cases, marketing is the actual film and the film is like an industrial product….. jaise itna shor machaya hai to kuchh to release karna hi padega” - Jagdeep Sahni
“They really don’t know what works. So they are looking at us like they (we) probably know. And that probability is why we are getting to make films.” - Anurag Kashyap
“People only talk about money. Either talk about making money or talk about stealing money or they talk about people who are stealing money. They all discuss money. This is the ongoing cultural conversation. Money!
The problem is that today nobody wants to be great. They all want to be rich.” - Pritish Nandy
“When we are with real friends we don’t bitch. You tend to bitch more when you are with casual friends” - Sudhir’s close friend.
In the end of the documentary (along the end credits), Rahul Ram of Indian Ocean casually raises a question that you have made quite a few films but nothing happened! And to this, Sudhir replies,
“Ek bada footballer hai Gary Linekar. Bahot Bada. Ussey kisine poocha, “Who scores the most number of goals? Is it the person who is in the right place at the right time?”

He said “No! You have to be in the right place all the time. And sometimes the ball comes to you.”
Addressing Rahul - “So you have to do the Riyaaz all the time. And sometime the song comes to you”
That ends the documentary and every time I watch it, I truly feel I have read an immensely valuable book just at the right time. 
Hope you will also find it equally valuable and contributing in your personal life too as myself.
(Note: The complete Documentary can now be seen on Youtube and deserves to be seen as a must by all true movie buffs)

Tags : BAAVRA MANN Documentary on Sudhir Mishra - Review by Bobby Sing at bobbytalkscinema.com, Must Watch Documentary Films, Not To Be Missed Documentaries, Life Teaching Documentaries, Must Watch Documentary for all lovers and students of Cinema, Movies To See Before You Die List by Bobby Sing
07 Apr 2019 / Comment ( 0 )
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