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Gour Hari Dastaan - The Freedom File: A Film That Inspires You to Value Your Freedom and Rights

Gour Hari Dastaan - The Freedom File: A Biopic on an Unsung Freedom Fighter

Have you ever heard of Gour Hari Das? He is a freedom fighter who fought against the British rule in India as a teenager. He is also a man who had to fight for 32 years to prove his identity as a freedom fighter in independent India. He is the subject of a biographical film called Gour Hari Dastaan - The Freedom File, directed by Anant Mahadevan. The film stars Vinay Pathak as Gour Hari Das, Konkona Sen Sharma as his wife Lakshmi Das, Ranvir Shorey as journalist Rajiv Singhal, Tannishtha Chatterjee as activist Anita, among others. The film depicts the life of Gour Hari Das from his childhood to his old age, his struggle to get a certificate recognizing his contribution to the nation, and his legacy as a true patriot. The film also explores the themes of corruption, red tape, apathy, and identity in modern India, and how they affect the lives of ordinary citizens. The film is based on a true story and is a tribute to the unsung heroes of India's freedom movement.

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The Life and Struggle of Gour Hari Das

His Early Years and Participation in the Freedom Movement

Gour Hari Das was born in 1925 in a village in Odisha. He was inspired by Mahatma Gandhi and his principles of non-violence and civil disobedience. He joined the Vanar Sena, a group of young freedom fighters who participated in various activities against the British rule. He took part in the Quit India Movement in 1942 and was arrested and jailed for three months. He also witnessed the brutal massacre of hundreds of people by the British forces in his village. He was determined to fight for his country's independence and never gave up his spirit.

His Post-Independence Ordeal to Prove His Identity

After India gained its independence in 1947, Gour Hari Das settled down in Mumbai and worked as a clerk in a government office. He married Lakshmi Das and had a son named Harish Das. He lived a simple and honest life, but he never forgot his past as a freedom fighter. He wanted to get a certificate from the government that would acknowledge his contribution to the nation and also entitle him to some benefits and privileges. However, he faced a lot of bureaucratic hurdles and apathy from the officials who refused to believe his claims or asked for bribes or documents that he did not have. He also faced ridicule and humiliation from his colleagues, neighbors, and even his own son who thought he was lying or delusional. He spent 32 years of his life running from pillar to post, writing letters, filing petitions, meeting politicians, and seeking help from journalists and activists. He never gave up his hope or dignity.

His Recognition and Legacy

Gour Hari Das finally received his certificate of recognition as a freedom fighter in 2006, after the intervention of Rajiv Singhal, a journalist who wrote about his story in a newspaper, and Anita, an activist who helped him with his legal case. He also received other honors such as the Tamra Patra from the Prime Minister of India, the Utkal Gourav Samman from the Chief Minister of Odisha, and the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Rotary Club of Mumbai. He also became a source of inspiration for many people who learned about his story through the media or word-of-mouth. He proved that truth always prevails and that one should never give up on one's rights or dreams.

The Making of Gour Hari Dastaan - The Freedom File

The Director's Vision and Research

Anant Mahadevan is an acclaimed director, actor, and writer who has worked in Hindi, Marathi, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, and English films. He is known for making films that are based on real-life stories or social issues. He got interested in Gour Hari Das's story when he read an article about him in a newspaper. He decided to make a film on him as he felt that it was an important and relevant story that needed to be told. He met Gour Hari Das personally and spent hours talking to him about his life and experiences. He also did extensive research on the history of India's freedom movement and the current state of affairs in the country. He wanted to make a film that would be authentic, realistic, and engaging.

The Casting and Performance of the Actors

Anant Mahadevan chose Vinay Pathak to play the role of Gour Hari Das as he felt that he had the right physical resemblance and acting skills to portray the character. Vinay Pathak is an versatile actor who has done comedy, drama, thriller, and biopic films. He prepared for his role by meeting Gour Hari Das several times and observing his mannerisms, speech, and expressions. He also underwent a physical transformation by losing weight, shaving his head, wearing glasses, and aging himself with makeup. He delivered a powerful performance that captured the emotions and nuances of Gour Hari Das's personality.

Konkona Sen Sharma played the role of Lakshmi Das, Gour Hari Das's wife who supported him throughout his ordeal. Konkona Sen Sharma is an award-winning actress who has done films in Hindi, Bengali, English, and other languages. She is known for her natural by writing about his story in a newspaper. Ranvir Shorey is a talented actor who has done comedy, drama, and thriller films. He is also a friend and frequent collaborator of Vinay Pathak. He played the role of Rajiv Singhal with conviction and humor, showing his curiosity, empathy, and courage in exposing the truth.

Tannishtha Chatterjee played the role of Anita, the activist who helped Gour Hari Das with his legal case. Tannishtha Chatterjee is an internationally acclaimed actress who has done films in Hindi, English, Bengali, and other languages. She is known for her strong and versatile performances. She played the role of Anita with passion and determination, showing her commitment to justice and human rights.

The film also featured other actors such as Murli Sharma, Saurabh Shukla, Rajit Kapur, Vikram Gokhale, Siddharth Jadhav, Bharat Dabholkar, Mohan Kapur, Vipin Sharma, and Vinay Apte in supporting roles. They all played their parts with professionalism and sincerity, adding to the realism and credibility of the film.

The Music and Cinematography of the Movie

The music of the film was composed by L. Subramaniam, a renowned violinist and composer who has worked in classical, fusion, and film music. He composed the soundtrack of the film using a blend of Indian and Western instruments and styles. He also collaborated with singers such as Kavita Krishnamurthy, Hariharan, Shankar Mahadevan, Sonu Nigam, Shreya Ghoshal, and others to create songs that suited the mood and theme of the film. The music of the film was praised for its melody, harmony, and originality.

The cinematography of the film was done by Alphonse Roy, a veteran cinematographer who has worked in Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, and English films. He captured the visuals of the film using natural light and realistic colors. He also used different techniques such as handheld camera, long shots, close-ups, and montages to create a cinematic effect. He also shot the film in various locations such as Mumbai, Odisha, Delhi, and London to show the contrast and diversity of the settings. The cinematography of the film was appreciated for its clarity, beauty, and authenticity.

The Reception and Impact of Gour Hari Dastaan - The Freedom File

The Critical Acclaim and Awards

The film was released on 14 August 2015, a day before India's Independence Day. It received positive reviews from critics and audiences alike. The film was praised for its direction, script, acting, music, the nation's independence. It also entitles them to some benefits and privileges such as pension, railway pass, medical facilities, etc.

  • What are some other biopics on freedom fighters?

Some other biopics on freedom fighters are Gandhi (1982), The Legend of Bhagat Singh (2002), Mangal Pandey: The Rising (2005), Rang De Basanti (2006), Bose: The Forgotten Hero (2006), Bhaag Milkha Bhaag (2013), Manikarnika: The Queen of Jhansi (2019), etc.


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