While the critics raised uproar about Tigmanshu Dhulia’s masterpiece Paan Singh Tomar losing out to Barfi! at Award Functions this year, the strangest catastrophe has failed to be located by both audiences and critics. While films like Vicky Donor, Kahaani and Barfi! are fairly basking in the glories of their success and adulation at all major awards in 2013, Paresh Rawal’s OMG! Oh My God was unduly negated by all and sundry.
To point out more specific details, the most important awards in Bollywood, the one of the black lady – Filmfare, rather conveniently ignored this critically acclaimed film. Nominated only in one category – Akshay Kumar for the Best Supporting Actor (Male), it is a shame that this film could not find itself a conspicuous place enough to be nominated, lest win awards. The film was not recognized in the Best Film Category or in the Best Actor category. Paresh Rawal, who is an actor par excellence, was shamelessly ignored by the juries of all important award functions Bollywood is attributed to, which includes Zee Cine Awards, Star Dust, National Film Awards and IIFA.
It is an intriguing question, what could have caused this underrated award show for a film which was thematically thought provoking and creative blended with a speeding screenplay and ace acting, it virtually had all the necessary ingredients to garner these appreciative tokens we term as awards. Being a satire film, commenting of social mores and mostly religion, a main reason why it could have been avoided was to refrain from clawing at the boisterous religious sentiments of extremist Hindus.
Not attempting to undermine any of the films nominated alongside, it is shocking to review that a movie as unusual and interesting was ignored at all the Awards functions unanimously. The movie was driven alone by Paresh Rawal backed by a brilliant script, which only an actor of his stature could so impeccably bring, alive on screen. I perceive it almost as an insult to the film and that man’s talent to have been brushed aside so ruthlessly.
Box office reports, film’s records and critics’ reviews all simply go on to prove the point. Raking over 80 crores at the box office, the film was one of the highest grosser of last year. While many films have grossed income by cashing in the mindlessness of a large part of the audience, this film received favorable reviews from majority of critics rating the film as excellent in terms of both story and acting. With content that powerful, the film has assuredly given its audiences Goosebumps at every twist in its tale and wrapping up with a climax that strong.
Spiritualists condemned the film as propagating atheism, but it is those who reject institutionalized religion who really understood the essence of the film. A unique subject in which a man sues God, it came strongly abundant on moral without directly being preachy. Many have been offended with the insult on Hinduism’s polytheism as well as Idol worship; it is only the new age, aware-of-worldly-religions Hindus who gave the film thumbs up.
So what exactly went wrong with OMG! Oh My God. Giving Bollywood satire a unique dimension, attaining the status of a trendsetter, I opine the film essentially failed for coming down too strong with its message. An offbeat, small budget film, this one was no star studded affair. It wasn’t lustrous and boasted minimalist airs. Awards, whether we accept o deny, is frankly swayed more by the glitterati than by sheer strength of talent. It is negatively amazing how the jury failed to notice a film this good!
Let’s just believe the omission of OMG! from most important categories of most important award function of 2013 was a mistake and was not intentional. Yet it doesn’t rectify the fact that a film this brilliant was unnecessarily and wrongly denied the right to fairly compete with other major films of the year which includes Vicky Donor, Kahaani, Barfi!, English Vinglish and Gangs of Wasseypur. In the end, OMG! remained to be an uncelebrated work of genius.