Punjabi cinema is gradually opening up to new subjects and concepts. It’s no more all about comedy movies or rom-coms. We can see a number of filmmakers tapping into genres of light satire, social issues, so on and so forth. Talking of social issues, director Sunit Sinha has tried to bring forth the issue of big city dreams in small eyes with his movie ‘Ranj’.
The film is about a village-based young man, who is being pushed by everyone to go to a metro city for a better life. He isn’t willing to move to a metro city but is pressured by everyone to do so. And when finally when he gives in to the pressure, the movie shows the struggles he faces and the hardship that comes his way.
Talking about why this subject in particular, Sunit Sinha in an exclusive conversation said, “Firstly, I relate to the subject personally. Though I have lived in big cities like Delhi and Mumbai for more than 29 years now, deep inside, I am a small-town guy. I come from the Patna of the 1980s. Patna in the 80s was a really small town. So after migrating for higher studies and work, in all these years, I have never breathed easy. I have this strange sense of rootlessness. I call it strange because the problem as it may sound so is not chronic. It’s more like a slight nagging pain, which you only learn to get accustomed to.”
“And I don’t think I am the only one who feels that way, a lot of us who have had to migrate to a metropolis has faced this in a big city. Even if it’s for a brief period of time. Secondly, there is a duality in the issue of migration, for employment, or if one is seeking better life prospects,” he added.
He said this duality appeals as a subject to him and continue to say, “Moving to an economic hub to tap better life opportunities is a sort of norm around the world. It is taken as a definitive sign of individual progress. It is all too deeply engrailed in our collective psyche.” “One is expected to chase a big city dream. But what if there is this one odd person who doesn’t believe in that dream itself. The conflict here is the interest, and the nature of this conflict appeals to me quite a bit. In ‘Ranj’, we have tried to explore this,” he concluded.