Directed by Aroop Dwivedi | Review by Riya Saha
[dropcap]B[/dropcap]ullying is an epidemic that affects kids, parents and entire communities. With stories about bullying making national headlines almost daily, director Aroop Dwivedi created an amazing film Bully. The reactive approach and perception of the problem leading to the solution was simply awesome.
Though I had never been bullied in my school days, I was a quiet child who was shy to speak what she felt in the fear that others would make fun of me. While watching the film, I could somehow relate to the main character.
Bullying or in a wider sense ragging is more than a big kid picking on a little kid. It’s intimidation, abuse, oppression, and shame. Beyond physical bullying, there is social bullying (often done through cyberbullying) and verbal bullying. Each type of aggressive behavior is painful. Each type leaves lasting scars. Some victims even try to commit suicide, while others face mental disorders, or for some, it’s extremely hard to forget the incidents. In this short film, Aroop has intelligently used his creative magic wand to create a beautiful scenario where the protagonist faces failures each time, just like any other real-life clumsy kid.
Even though it’s a short film, ‘Bully’ uses bright and innovative approach in the world of independent cinema. The film tries to address bullying at three levels. The first one is where people mean to help you cope, grow and protect you from harm. This inadvertently ends up doing just the opposite because to them, that is how a kid becomes a man/woman. The second level is normalization- where the victim doesn’t talk about it because he/she already knows that it will be ignored by responsible grown-up people as something that happens to everyone. The third level is about how to cope with such an act and turn them around and make them work for you before surrendering to circumstances.
The film is an attempt to reach out to both bullies and their victims and tell them that both the act of bullying and the act of being a victim are wrong and they need to address them as soon as they can.
So how do we protect our kids from becoming victims? How do we teach our children to stand up to bullying when they see it? Perhaps most importantly, how do we raise our children to treat each other with respect? Yes, as parents, teachers and guides, it is our duty to teach a student face hurdles in every step of their life.
The title Dhonsiya is a Hindi word that refers bully (a language used in the northern part of India). Technically, the film is made in animation, and while watching it, I could understand the importance of this experience. As an independent animation filmmaker, Aroop Dwivedi has made an impressive film that doesn’t only fight social issues in India but also serves as an inspiration for kids who are facing teasing and mocking on many occasions.
Guys, if you are still wondering what is so special about this short film, you must watch it! And you should surely make your kids watch this meaningful story about bullying.
Riya Saha is a Kolkata based writer, editor, journalist and cinephile. She has completed her masters with Journalism and Mass Communication from Calcutta University and currently working as a freelance journalist. Having a great interest in world cinema made Riya join Human Lab Corporation. She is passionate about setting goals and achieving them. She enjoys reading, writing, travelling, socializing and meeting people. She is also very fond of watching International movies.