“Rocketry: The Nambi Effect” film has been the center of criticism ever since its release. Though the film has performed well in theatres and won the hearts of the audience, critics have dismissed it for inaccurate portrayal of religion and ‘blue-coloured’ patriotism.
Anupama Chopra, in her review at Film Companion, tagged the lead character as ‘True Blue Hindu Patriot’. She added that the film was marred by jingoism and jargon. Fans slammed Ms. Chopra for her review and people from the film industry, including Madhavan condemned her comments.
FC Review: "#Madhavan's #RocketryTheNambiEffect comes into its own when it's stripped off its largeness to give us a tragic story about India and its bone-crunching system", writes @Vishal1Menon. @fcompanionsouth https://t.co/sWayrDIJ1U
— Film Companion (@FilmCompanion) July 2, 2022
Reacting to her review, Maddy penned, “We thought it was in terrible taste too.. this is who Nambi sir is .. I am totally okay if you did not like or hated the film and I will take it in the chin..but why this ?? Come on -we are way better than this.Regretful”. People also labeled Ms. Chopra ‘hinduphobic’ for the same.
This is being #Hinduphobic
Why does it trouble U if Narayanan is a Hindu patriot and prays during crucial times?
Every maker doesn’t justify trrsm d way #VinodChopra dd in Shikara . @ActorMadhavan hs done a brilliant job and hv d guts to praise it. pic.twitter.com/TQ5ZtL3ASP
— Ashoke Pandit (@ashokepandit) July 2, 2022
Filmmaker Ashoke Pandit too slammed Chopra on Twitter by asking what troubles her if a person is a Hindu patriot and prays during crucial times. Scientist Nambi Narayanan himself reacted to such reviews in a recent interview.
From the bottom of my heart, I wish this happens and I am sure it will happen because @ActorMadhavan is one of the most honest actor. Foe those who don’t know he was one of the finest debaters and a true patriot. https://t.co/eBeGtwCV7j
— Vivek Ranjan Agnihotri (@vivekagnihotri) July 1, 2022
A video has been trending on social media, where Nambi Narayanan can be seen explaining his point and asking if it was a sin to be a Hindu. “It is funny sometimes. You know somebody wrote a review saying that Nambi Narayanan is shown as Hindu. .. is doing some Utsavam, reciting Suprabhatam…He is a ‘Brahmin’. Hindutva is being shown. I just wanted to ask you, I am a Hindu. I mean I have no shame in saying that. Is it a sin to be a Hindu?” said Nambi in the video.
Nambi further argued that he is a Hindu and thus, the movie showed him as a Hindu, as it could not have shown him as a Muslim or Christian. He further asserted that he was not a Brahmin, and even if he was, why would people want to cut them (Brahmins) off.
The scientist also clarified that he does not have any political affiliation either to the right or left, and added that he was given support by both PM Modi and Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan. The visuals of Narayanan conducting ‘puja’ in his room were questioned in the film, while patriotism and reference to a particular religion were the few plot points raised by the detractors.
However, the movie is clearly not hate-filled, anti-minority, or intentionally divisive. Though, at times it may seem like a James Bond or Hollywood movie where intense nationalism is shown with larger-than-life scenes.
But it is important to portray such scenes for understanding the geopolitical context of that time and events that led Nambi to be labeled as ‘anti-national’. Such scenes stand justified, in wake of the humiliation that man and his family have suffered.
To conclude, though the film has been the butt of criticism by ‘experts’, it is giving serious competition in theatres.
References: Wion, Mashable, India.com, Koimoi
Featured Image Source: Firstpost