Gangs of Wasseypur (Kashyap, 2012)

Everyone is referencing this as the Indian heir to THE GODFATHER but I see the pace and aggressive editing/pop music cues of THE DEPARTED, just expanded and prolonged over decades. What a furious masterpiece of genre extravagance, a history defined by the art (and bungling) of assassinations, marriages, funerals, chases, ceremonies, campaigns, friendships, love-making, and countless other rituals. It may be splattered with brutal violence, acts that initially seem like necessary evils. “I killed them so I could live.”

But all of the gore and dismemberment, the head shots and knife wounds, they are representative of an entire genre living inside its own head. The dream, the fantasy of being a gangster, has real life consequences (a past history of retribution and death) but also psychological ripples that span generations and delude the young into thinking they can avenge the old and get away with it. There’s no escape from your own warped sense of self. This quote sums up everything: “Every fucker’s got his own movie playing inside his head.”

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