Bangalore Film Society

CRASH :A Matter of Disgrace[]

Tushar K Shukla

The movie of the season, rather of the whole year, did not impress me all the while I tried hard to read into its kindergarten narrative to find out what did the jury see into it that I, both as a "class" and a "mass", could not see. I liked the simplicity of the stories when it began and was awaiting that wondrous Oscar-winning twist and bang and collision and crash that would astound me to reaffirm my belief in the sanctity of the holiest of holies, but sadly it got over before that could happen. Disappointment! Big time disappointment. As some other reviewers have aptly pointed out, you simply can't disrespect our intelligence by giving us THIS in the name of good cinema, from an industry that has matured over an era of cinematic gems. Though its not that the academy is doing a great job with the nominations either- I simply find it unfathomable to see films like Munich, Broken Flowers,Syriana, Good Night and Good Luck, Jarhead, The Matador, or even King Kong relegated to some bad-cinema alleys and people like Matt Dillon being nominated. But this is heights of cinematic injustice- to give the Best Picture Award to something like Crash which is pretense and presupposition at its worst. I would like to appeal to people to publicly support this disgust that I and many other movie lovers on and outside movie portals like and other independent film discussion forums share. We, who hope and wait and cherish and appreciate good cinema, would never digest this bad joke. I am from India where "Being Bollywood" is a tag many contemporary film makers are running away from. I am sorry to say but Crash was nothing but Bollywood- remixed. At least you can't expect Indians to buy the supposedly-innovative plot that amused the world(or so what we are made to believe). I do not need to say why I am so disappointed, because many other one-star reviews would tell you a clear picture, but the points where I simply lost it were- a childish stereotypical depiction of racism(you should see Higher Learning, Dangerous Minds, American HistoryX etc to see how "real" these depictions can be), the tattooed-"gangbanger"-daughter angle, the predictable "surprise" in the end, the ubiquity of cross races all around(correct me if I am wrong, a US friend of mine told me LA is like that but they have simply gone overboard in the name of artistic liberties), minimum or no use of camera-enhancements, the trying-so-hard-to-be-real dialogs, uninspired works of some actors like ...everyone actually.....I could go on... On a lighter note, the only good thing I liked is the scene at the gun-shop(the double-meaning dialog of the shopkeeper!) The film tries hard to be a Geography lesson, as one of the characters point out, but ironically, has created History by presenting yet another glaring example of bastardization of art-meets-life philosophy.

And you thought Indians did injustice by awarding Black the best film!