over fourtumultuous years in India, Pakistan,
Japan and the USA following nuclear tests in the Indian
War and Peace is
a documentary journey of peace activism in the
face of global militarism and war.
The film is framed by the murder of Mahatma
Gandhi in 1948, an act whose portent and poignancy remains
undiminished half a century later. For the filmmaker, whose
family was immersed in the non-violent Gandhian movement,
the sub-continent's trajectory towards unabashed militarism
is explored with sorrow, though the film captures stories
of resistance along the way. Amongst these is a visit to
the "enemy country" of Pakistan, where contrary
to expectations, Indian delegates are showered by affection
not only by their counterparts in the peace movement but
by uninitiated common folk.
The film moves on to examine the costs being
extracted from citizens in the name of national security.
From the plight of residents living near the nuclear test
site to the horrendous effects of uranium mining on local
indigenous populations, it becomes abundantly clear that,
contrary to a myth first created by the U.S.A, there is
no such thing as the "peaceful Atom".
WAR & PEACE
/ JANG AUR AMAN slips seamlessly from a
description of home made jingoism to focus on how an
aggressive United States has become a role model, its
doctrine of "Might is Right" only too well-absorbed
by aspiring elites of the developing world. As we enter
the 21st century, war has become perennial, enemies
are re-invented and economies are inextricably tied
to the production and sale of weapons. In the moral
wastelands of the world memories of Gandhi seem like
a mirage that never was, created by our thirst for
peace and our very distance from it.
Trailer on youtube "anandverite"
Prize, Earth Vision International Film Festival,
* International Critics' Award (FIPRESCI), Sydney Film Festival,
* Best Film/Video, Mumbai International Film Festival, 2002
* International Jury Prize, Mumbai International Film Festival,
* Gold Award, Indian Documentary Producers' Association, 2002
* Best Documentary, International Video Festival, Kerala,
* Best Documentary, Karachi International Film Festival, 2003
* Silver Dhow, Zanzibar International Film Festival, 2003
Film Awards, India,
"The film itself is a tour
de force, beautifully shot and often darkly funny
and much more riveting than the dry subject matter might
Duncan Campbell - The Guardian, UK
"War and Peace has
a riveting intelligence all its own and earns
its epic title."
Mitchell - The New York Times
"Fantastic, it's accessible,
it's actually been released on the multiplex circuit.
Irrepressible in his one-man crusade, Anand Patwardhan
has assembled his finest work with War & Peace,
sniping away courageously at the unchecked
forces of militarism and nuclear proliferation."
Rashid Irani - The Times of
"Anand Patwardhan's rousing, engrossing
and unexpectedly funny broadside against India's hot
chase of the bomb opens with an old newsreel on Mohandas
Karamchand Gandhi's assassination by Hindu nationalist
Ramnath - Time Out, Mumbai
"We should listen
to our voices of dissent for our own sake and for the
sake of our children and their children. War and Peace
is that voice's most eloquent expression. Which is
why it should be seen by everyone, everywhere. In schools,
in colleges, in factories, on television."
Anil Dharker - The Times of India
" A frightening examination of the continuing confrontation
between nuclear neighbours India and Pakistan. Narrated in quiet yet
of immense interest and importance."
Stratton - Variety
fast-paced and laced with dark humour, War and Peace...compels
you to stop, think and realign certain perspectives"
Sunanda Mehta - The Indian Express
"The explosions and the resultant jingoistic
euphoria are a function of the frustration
and fevered anger of a failed elite, the film argues,
backing its argument with vivid images of nationalistic
and religious fervor that verge on the surreal."
Ashfaque Swapan - India-West
most important film in this year's Berlin Film Festival"
“This film by India’s leading documentary
filmmaker is so important that one could justify its requirement
as part of the education of all high school students and
undergraduates in America… The power of the film
derives from its brilliant cinematography and narration,
its juxtaposition of points of view and its total honesty.
Patwardhan never preaches, he simply shows things the way
they are and lets his audience react.”
Blair B. Kling – University of Illinois
“Patwardhan is as unsparing in
his criticism of the aggressiveness of the American military
and nuclear machine as he is of the nuclear pretensions
of India and Pakistan…and in his understanding
of the sexual politics of resurgent Hindu communalism,
Patwardhan remains India’s most astute and daring
documentary filmmaker and one of the country’s
most sensitive commentators.”
Vinay Lal – Manas
“The atom bomb has come to India
with another American tradition - the curbing of works
that seek to expose its dangers. ''War and Peace'' has
won praise and prizes at film festivals around the world,
including Bombay's, but it is effectively banned in its
home country. The censor board continues to demand cuts
on a variety of trumped-up charges.”
Hamrah – The
“Patwardhan has been making documentaries
that challenge India's establishment for 30 years, becoming
one of the country's most respected documentarians. For
almost as long, he has been battling the state in one
form or another for the right to show his films uncensored.”
Amy Waldman – The New York Times
A Link to Gandhi Information
Bombs for peace. The ultimate oxymoron.
What could be more twisted and warped than that? The
test is successful. ‘The Buddha is smiling’.
But Patwardhan reminds us that this time the joke is on
Mandakini Menon - Cut
Camera, Editing -
Sound - Simantini
Dhuru, Monica Wahi, Vipin Bhati
Production, Editing Assistance -
Monica Wahi, Sanjiv Shah