874 Two movies, one as moving as the other

Two excellent movies this weekend, one in the cinema: Goodbye Christopher Robin … one of the best anti-war movies, though there are only split-seconds of war scenes in the film. It is ostensibly a movie about the making of “Winnie the Pooh” by A. A. Milne, and it is very charming on that level.

The New Yorker

“Pooh is largely a prop for a very adult exploration of the clash between reality and innocence, war and peace, privacy and fame and parent and child. For all the sunny cinematography and British-esque scenes in the re-created woods of Sussex, the movie is candid about life’s cruelties, as well as the illusions that create much-needed escape.”

It is one of very few movies that has brought me to tears lately and choked me up … and all for non-Winnie-the-Pooh reasons.

The second movie we watched this weekend is on Netflix - and it is even more important that the A.A. Milne story. It is a brilliant Indian non-Bollywood film purportedly about religion: Dharm.

Beyond being about Religion (its Western name) it is about one man’s capacity to change. And this story is most spectacularly told. Apart from being a "message-movie" it is a rollicking story, with very interesting insights about India, its caste system and the standing of the Brahmin caste (the religious leaders):

The Times of India:

"Dharm is a film that needs to be made mandatory viewing in all schools across India (most certainly not only in India, CB) if we really want to build a secular nation, without giving up on our traditional heritage.

"More importantly, it needs to be screened - free public viewings - for every fanatic organisation that exists within our country and in every communally sensitive town, kasbah, colony.

Finally, it should be made compulsory viewing for some of our political leaders - and we won't take names - who have made a killing out of orchestrated communal frenzy and caste violence.

"Dharm is not an ordinary film. Its power lies in the fact that it gives us a progressive interpretation of religion, straight from the head pontiff who has pursued a life of misconstrued religiosity."

I recommend this film strongly, especially to anyone who believes people cannot change, and that probably would be the majority of us. I have written a piece in my book how strongly held that belief is, and that we must address that issue.