Thiruvananthapuram: “Nobody really wants a war, neither the people of India nor the people of Pakistan. It is all just part of a political game,” said Major Ravi, film maker, here on Tuesday. Speaking about his latest film, Kurukshetra, at an interactive programme organised by the Kerala University Union at the Government Arts College here on Tuesday, Mr. Ravi said the friction between India and Pakistan was largely the result of the fanaticism of some leaders.
“More than a military film, Kurukshetra is basically the story of normal human beings who fight for their country and have families back home. I made this film in an effort to rekindle the patriotism among the youth of our country and show them how the Indian soldiers upheld the culture of our country even in the battlefield,” said Mr. Ravi, a former Army man.
Kurukshetra is Major Ravi’s third film and is based on the Kargil conflict of May-July 1999. Mohanlal, actor, plays the lead role of Colonel Mahadevan in the film. “Mohanlal has really been the backbone of the film. It was amazing to see how he overcame his physical ailment to deliver such a great performance in the film,” he said.
The film maker said real army artillery guns were used to recreate the war sequences to ensure visual and technical quality of the film. “Some of my colleagues during the time of the war are now senior officers in Kargil. It is with their help that we got to use some sophisticated artillery units in the film. It is the first time such a war film shot in the real battlefield was being made in Malayalam,” he said. If not as much, Kurukshetra had come quite close to J.P. Dutta’s film LoC based on the same subject, at a much lower budget.
Santhosh Damodar, film producer, said the budget came to around Rs.6 crore.
Biju Menon, actor, said he was proud to be part of such a film. “It gave me an idea of what the soldiers went through on the battlefield. It is definitely an honour to be part of such a film,” he said.
Asked if his patriotism had increased after working in Kurukshetra, Siddique, actor, said the film was in fact a medium to express his patriotism. “I cannot say that my patriotism increased by any level because I am already a very patriotic Indian. However, I did deliver some of the best dialogues of my career through my character in the film,” he said. Asked if he intended to make only military films, Mr. Ravi said that he would venture into a non-military film only after getting a suitable subject and story. “Right now, I feel quite safe doing army films as I have no other competitor in the Malayalam film industry making films in this genre.”
Anil Murali, Manikuttan and Bineesh Kodiyeri, actors; Siddharth, music director; Achu Rajamani, background score artist; College Principal Usha S. Nair; and University Union general secretary Ratheesh R. were present.