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Abstract

In her article "The Anti-Colonial Revolutionary in Contemporary Bollywood Cinema" Vidhu Aggarwal discusses several contemporary films including Rakesh Omprakash Mehra's Rang de Basanti with focus on the figure of the revolutionary hero. The Bollywood film is a cultural form that combines several aesthetic styles, from within India and from the outside. With its formal heterogeneity and as a product of one of India's largest cities, Mumbai Bollywood has had an ongoing fascination with "arrival," that is, with India's status as a contemporary nation-state. While some Bollywood films seem to celebrate fantasy scenarios of India's arrival on the global scene, at the same time they express anxiety about affective possibilities within a new Bollywood of higher production values and larger global reach, an India of mobile borders and attenuated historical context. Aggarwal examines the way the contemporaneity of Bollywood — both in terms of acting style and aesthetics — is negotiated through reenactments of the colonial period and compares Bollywood cinema with aspects of the British film Slumdog Millionaire, directed by Danny Boyle.

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