Oorvazi Irani’s short fictional film (of approx nine and half minute’s duration) The K File is staccato in its representation yet passionate and forceful in interpretation. The director has taken care that she gets everything right from the start. Or may be even before that. The film poster for example is striking – black and white smeared with red with a question on it – “A wrong to do right or the right to do wrong?”
This is smart since in a short feature of less than ten minutes to establish the reel reality you cannot afford to be liberal with your narrative time-line. To be economical may mean being discrete. Putting the poster ahead hence serves the purpose of rolling the ball for the audience along with the opening shots – deftly cut and fudged, we as audience are aware of the plot. Yes, it is about Mohammad Ajmal Kasab, the lone surviving terrorist of the 26/11 attacks. But not exactly him. There are two characters in the film – Asab, the terrorist (modeled on Kasab) and the country’s Home Minister who fears hanging Asab will reduce the Muslim votes for his Government. When confronted with the question that there had been several innocent Muslims who were killed in the attacks as well and that the common Muslim is against terror as much as a common Hindu, the minister retaliates citing the other few Hindu terrorists who were yet to be hanged. Interesting is this dilemma of the Minister as an individual, his Government as an organization and the country as the dumb population. Trying to be impartial means justice delayed and eventually denied.
There are few hand-held shots with local lightings and slight jerky movements with the camera angle shifting as the story unfolds. The end complements the camera trajectory of sizing up of the terrorist. In a blurry, fuzzy finale, it wasn’t known whose bullet pierced Asab’s neck – what the country’s governance can’t do. Is it the director who puts an end to this dilemma? Or the audience’s wish-fulfillment used as a motive here like the fly which is so suggestive?
The film is released on 28-May-2012 online (http://www.facebook.com/TheKFileMovie) since the director knows that the widest spread of a short film is to use the internet. This is predominantly a free show and what matters is the film reaching Indians and the world commune trying to fight terror.
Where do we leave the film then? It is a reality which the director took in her hands and fictionalized for her message to come through. Oorvazi’s script is simple, basic and sharp. The genre of the film is based effectively with the background score – definitive and at times thunderous. Most importantly, there is no one message as the director doesn’t become prophetic. She in turn, sets the audience in front of few questions – the moral standpoint of terrorism and our action against it. There is no viewpoint of Asab though. What lures him and the others like him to take up arms to kill people? There are no bigger sacrifices that they are ready for. That exploration probably would have made this into a bigger venture. But as the audience it does come to the mind if such findings are worth dealing with – not for Asab only but for any future attacks on humanity.
Oorvazi may not know but that bullet in the end came straight out my hands and heart, and there are no qualms about it!