Hemanth recommended Crash as we were sipping mocha at bucks. I went straight and added it to the top of my flix queue. Took it over to Ram‘s place to project it over a big screen and watched the crash happening one after another.
Crash has a fascinating screenplay. It isn’t unique. But still fascinating. 13 peoples’ life come in and go out of each others life on an unassuming day in LA. Most of the ‘come in and go out’ happen unexpectedly and that’s the screenwriter’s skill. Even as the movie runs as bits and pieces of incidents, its put together with absolute continuity and perfect harmony with other scenes such that no single incident seems better/worse than the other. These people who crash onto each other’s life are perfect strangers and belong to different races.
The movie talks about racism and post 9/11 anxiety issues which common people face in everyday life. An old meticulous Farsi shopkeeper who wants a gun to safeguard, a powerful attorney’s paranoid wife, a perfectly loving father who is victimized just because of his race, a chinaman caught under a truck for no reason and many more such good and bad people bump onto each others life. Scripting this movie could have been a tight rope walk. It’s easy with so much happening at the same time, the movie could seem like a collection of trailers. Paul Haggis, the writer-director of Crash seems to be a reputed TV series guy. I found that while reading about him after I watched the movie.
All the characters seem as important as the other and each one’s life changing event has been dramatised enough for the audience to relate with. The dialogues are provocative and blatant as required. With a studio producing the movie, these dialogues would have been dumped even during the pre-production. But it’s the same dialogues that makes one relate to the movie better. Independent films like these ensures a hope that movies can also be used for better purposes than entertainment. Movies needn’t propogate social ‘messages’ only through dialogues. They can be strong, subtle and might end-up on you as some kind of revelation. Someone watching the movie heart-of-heart will walk around their neighborhood looking for positives within people. And that’s a success for Paul Haggis.