Friday, February 29, 2008

Phenominal Film: "Amal"

I saw this film at a screening this past week and I was pleasantly surprised. This film could not have come at a better time in my life, for it reminds me that there is still genuine goodness in the world and that the poorest man can have the humblest and richest soul.

Amal, a multi-layered portrait of contemporary India that follows an auto-rickshaw driver in New Delhi (Amal) who is content with his small, but vital role in life. Though many may seem to view his occupation as menial by North American standards, he sees it as a gratifying and take pride in the auto-rickshaw his father has spent a lifetime saving for, to pass on to him.

One day he drives an eccentric, often mentally "loose" billionaire (GK Jayaram), disguised as a vagabond and close to his death, sets off to search the streets for the last morsel of humanity. He wishes to leave his fortune not to his greedy and arrogant son, but someone who has been un-touched by corruption and still remains pious and faithful in the power of kindness.

Filmed on location in New Delhi, India, this modern day fable asks the important question of what success means to each individual in his/her life. The screen is graced by some on India's top stars and this is the first production of Mississauga (U of T graduate), Ritchie Mehta. In fact the star of piece is also of local talent (Rupinder Nagra).
The story is optimistic and provides a flicker of hope that the human mind and rise above the obstcle of imposed poverty and deprivation. I highly recommend checking this film out when it is widely released this coming summer. Amal debuted at The Toronto International Film Festival last year, after Mehta won the pitching competition to the TIFF board of directors.

Support your local talent, it is defiantly worth the few bucks in this case.
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