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Review: Belle (Hollywood film)

February 3, 2017

Not sure whether Belle was screened in tv today because of Trump making global headlines.

Whether this is a coincidence, I do not know either.

But the picture saw me shedding involuntary tears as the heroine (half black) Dido fights for her dignity and aspires for equal rights for her race/community and marries the rebel lawyer Davinier in a silent revolution which marks the beginning of the decline of the slave trade and slavery in the west.

The young lawyer’s words in the court as heard by the judge Manfield is a moving testimony as to why and how it is important to remain a decent human being over anything. For reasons specific to India/Hindus, many of my countrymen including me have to side with Trump when it comes to his immigration policies toward a handful of (universally dreaded) nations (if I may say so), but if India could be free of terror and sabotage and betrayal today from within as well as external, I wouldn’t think twice about thrashing Trump (here in my blog post, where else?) 😀

Doesn’t matter what you are, where you come from, you may be black or white or brown or yellow – but in my limited experience in life from having lived in 3 countries and moving with mixed races for over 20 years now,  I have come to believe or rather trust, good and bad exist everywhere. There are local arabs where I make home today who cannot stand the sight of human misery that their hearts will break; born with silver spoon, life is cake walk for them until now (at least) (fortunately). There are most benevolent of them, those who send their maids/servants life long pensions even after they retire in their home countries. I happen to meet someone regularly from the ground zero of war zone (that I don’t want to name) in my speech club – and I haven’t met a more innocent or funny soul. I mean,there is total dis-connect. You would never believe his folks are the ones at the epicenter of ‘things’ now. Not just me, we all see the truth written on the wall (that none of us would like to read) : NEVER TO GENERALIZE. Now this is a gross mistake.

After all who are Trump’s second and third wives? Immigrants themselves once upon a time. Who is Trump. Son of illegal immigrants who bludgeoned their way into America building him his dream home on the graves of native Indians.  What is happening in middle-east right now has a precedent in the war of crusades, in founding the American dream, in colonization of Africa, India, China, Australia to name a few, isn’t it? The difference is the absence of a (polarized) media (in the past).

Middle-east still falls short of Hitler’s Germany. By the way, last evening it was ‘Life is beautiful’ another one of my favourite pictures. And its not even 100 years since the Nazis burned Europe, committing one of humanity’s worst (documented) genocide (the undocumented are the genocide of Indians of America, Hindus of India over a 1000 year period for instance). And now we are here to give Angela Merkel the benefit of doubt over the refugees who fled a terrible war? Neither were Hiroshima & Nakasaki middle-east. Nor was Vietnam. Who persecuted who?

Back to ‘Belle’ – looks like this is a true story that led to the legislation that made slave trade and slavery illegal in the 19th century finally. Landmark judgement that changed the course of history, because two gentlemen and a brave young lady decided that enough injustice was done and it was time to set things right…

Kudos to the cast and the director and script writer. Just perfect. And what a timing!

Kindness is the meaning of decency. Compassion is the meaning of culture. Wonder how many can get this basic truth.

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