Dunkirk: An Indian hero, a British hero – the first of his kind
Posted On August 7, 2021
Dunkirk is the story of how a group of men set out on a daring mission in the aftermath of the Second World War and found themselves at a crossroads.
It is the tale of the courage of an ordinary Indian and a British soldier, and it is a fitting tribute to a great hero, an icon and a true hero, the British writer, Jyoti Jain, wrote in an essay for the National Writers’ Centre.
In an age when Indian cinema has become an international phenomenon, there is little room for Indian heroes, she wrote.
It has become a trend to make Indian heroes into Hollywood icons, anachronistic to the history of Indian cinema, she added.
In a country of over 1.5 billion people, it is not easy to come across heroes who do not live like the average Indian.
The idea of making Indian heroes is something that has always been there but has been kept behind the curtain, she said.
The best way to do this is to create a story that tells a story in which the ordinary Indian has to come up with some kind of ingenuity to overcome the odds and get his life back on track.
The story is one of ordinary people coming together in the face of adversity.
It can be about a young man who is left stranded in a dangerous place and is brought back to life by his parents and a group, it can be a story of a family in trouble, she suggested.
The Indian cinema is an international treasure, she concluded.
A hero of a different kind – an ordinary man, she pointed out, would be unlikely to win an Oscar.
“It is the way in which a hero is seen, and not by a hero, but by ordinary people,” she wrote, “and this is the kind of hero that is most likely to get nominated for an award.”
The best of the best In a year when there has been so much celebration of the Indian films and the British films, Jain wrote, she was saddened to see the award given to “the first of its kind”, which was given by an American producer, Kevin Costner, for the British version of the film, The Imitation Game.
She said he was an actor who made his name in Hollywood.
He was the first Indian actor to win a best actor Oscar for his performance in Robert Altman’s The Implant.
“I am so happy for him,” Jain said.
“He is one in a long line of great actors who have played a role in making cinema so much better, and he has made a contribution to the Indian cinema in the process.”
This is the reason why she has chosen to write about Dunkirk, she told the National Literary Centre here.
“We have a very proud tradition in India and it’s time that this tradition is honoured, and that this film is given the Oscar,” she said, adding that it was an honour to be associated with the story.
It was only in 2011 that the film received an Indian-made version, which was shown at the Cannes Film Festival.
The Imprint of a Thousand Suns was shot in New York and London, and the film won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film.
The film’s star, Tom Hardy, was awarded an Oscar for Best Actor for his portrayal of an Australian soldier in Dunkirk.