The whole world’s been going gaga over Tom McCarthy’s Oscar-winning film Spolight. Rightly so; the film was great. But for the journalist community (not fraternity, there’s women too), Spotlight is more than just a film. It’s a validation of the work that many journalists do, despite odds against them.
Here’s a sample of some kickass south Indian films that discuss the journalism and the media:
Ulidavaru Kandante (Kannada): This 2014 film revolves around an integral truth that is referred to as the Rashomon effect: that different people bring contradictory interpretations to an event based on the partial view they have of it. An investigation of a high-profile murder, the film’s many episodes are tied together by the efforts of journalist Regina (Sheetal Shetty) to find the truth.
Anasuya (Telugu): This thriller featured Bhumika Chawla as an intrepid investigative journalist out to catch the killer behind a series of gruesome serial murders. Anasuya is the quintessential investigative journalist, she can worm her way into just about any place, uncover clues that befuddle the cops, and a single-minded dedication to her cause no matter what the results.
Ko (Tamil): In this 2011 film, Jiiva plays a photojournalist with martial arts and stunt biking chops. Through the camera’s eye, he exposes political scandals, and helps a young and upright politician rise to power, until he realizes the cynical manipulation he has been ensnared into. At the end of the film, he is faced with the choice between pursuing the truth or letting a public untruth stand for the good of society.
Pathram (Malayalam): This 1999 film starring Suresh Gopi became a huge hit for the way it portrayed the intervention of business interests in newspaper publishing. The film portrayed Suresh Gopi as a journalist with integrity who finds himself increasingly uncomfortable with the way profit making is driving his newspaper, and finally exposes the ugly underbelly of the business interests funding the paper.