26th Agust 2013, Sunday: Like Ashton Kutcher said after ‘Jobs’, everyone evolves, in the same way that he is not the same today at 35 as he was at 25! We have been experiencing the evolution of John Abraham for over a decade now. Only a year ago we saw him joining hands with Shoojit Sircar bringing out the breezy comedy Vicky Donor. Though not without its faults, through the making of a charged political thriller like Madras Café they have created a cult film and at the same time set a new bench mark for Hindi cinema. In the opening sequences, while laying out the geopolitical history of the region primarily through voiceovers, it appeared more muddled than moving. It takes almost half the length of the film to come to terms with the incoherent and jarring narrative. Yet the equations of power and eloquence,
truth and fiction, empathy and insensitivity could not have been balanced in a more fitting manner. Madras Cafe is a nimble, impertinent and grim chronicle of an ignoble offshoot of political history in the run up to the slaying of the former prime minister of the world’s largest democracy. In India at one side of the coin is a huge population of young and educated who want to explore newer turfs, stay with the times, and on the other there is the vast section of illiterates who the politicians and dream merchants relentlessly exploit. The reason why movies of the genre of Madras Café deserve to have an audience is because only by imbuing hope in the Johns and Shoojits of this generation we will also qualify to be contemporaries of our time. After all every stone within its fold furtively fosters a sculpture waiting for the first tap of the sculptor’s chisel!