(image courtesy: rediff.com)
After ages, it’s raining kiddie movies again. Chhota Bheem and the Curse of Damyaan and Arjun: The Warrior Prince. Okay, maybe two movies isn’t much of a rain-storm, but it is better than a five-minute drizzle — a few of which our hot, sweltering city would greatly appreciatiate, just by the way.
“Chhota Bheem” happens to be my five-year-old son’s hero. We, my eight-year-old son and I, just tagged along for the cheese popcorn. My little one watched with stars in his eyes as Bheem and his gang of friends learnt some cool ‘jum-jum-jum-jadoo’ to defeat the evil snake lord, Damyaan, of Sonapur. The snake lord reminded me of a certain basilisk of Potterish characteristics, a ring of evil which as golden-hued and devilish as its ‘big brother’ in “The Lord of the Rings” and a town named Sonapur, which was (not so?) strangely reminiscent of Disney’s Agrabah of Aladdin fame, complete with flying carpets, with Damyaan’s den resembling the Cave of Wonders. From a very critical, cynical, adult eye’s view, it was very clear that this story probably started out as nothing more than a made-for-TV-movie which was suddenly lengthened a bit to be released in the movie halls so that the very high popularity of Chhota Bheem could be cashed in on by some very astute producers. But, my little one enjoyed and so did his big brother (although he’ll refuse to admit it) and that makes this mamma very happy — she did get to munch on cheese popcorn, after all.
(image courtesy: desimartini.com)
Arjun: The Warrior Prince was much more sophisticated, and why not, as it was made with Disney’s blessings. The life story of the third Pandava brother is one that is full of drama, adventure, romance, human frailty and redemption. This movie focused on just a few parts, with major sequences either being glossed over or not mentioned at all. Now while I realise that huge chunks of India’s, nay, the world’s greatest epic (yes, in my opinion), are not suitable for children, I don’t agree with some of the liberties that were taken. But then again, that is, once again, my opinion. However, the movie was immensely entertaining, of superb standard and huge beacon of hope that our country’s treasure trove of stories may make it to the world of fancy-pants animation after all and reach a global audience. Definitely something to look forward to.