September 11th, 2001, marks the day
when 2,977 people were brutally killed in a terrorist attack launched
upon the World Trade Centre in New York City. To
remember the deceased of the attack on this Remembrance Day, BollyCurry
presents to you the top 5 Bollywood/Urdu movies based on the 9-11
attacks and its aftermath.
Yun Hota To Kya Hota: What
Hota To Kya Hota: What if..?
(2006), directed by the super-talented Naseeruddin Shah was
first Hindi film based on the 9/11 attacks. The story revolves around
a group of people from various cities of India, who are flying to the
USA when their plane gets hijacked by terrorists and is crashed into
the Twin Towers and Pentagon on 9/11. The group of people consists
of: Tilottima Das Punj (Konkona Sen Sharma), Salim Rajabali (Irrfan
Khan), Rahul Bhide (Ankur Khanna) and Rajubhai Patel (Paresh Rawal).
Tilottime is happily married to Hemant (Jimmy Shergill) and she's
flying to him so they can be together forever, away from her cruel
mother-in-law who doesn't want her to stay in touch with Hemant. Next
we have Salim, who is the rich son of a powerful godmother (Saroj
Khan), but gets involved in killing and to save his mother's reputation,
he's forced to go to the USA. Then we have Rahul, a poor
but brilliant medical student who gets an offer from a prestigious
American university and is all set to go there. Last, but not the
least, we have Rajubhai, an organizer for prestigious and popular
foreign shows who is flying to the USA with his ex-girlfriend Tara
(Ratna Pathak Shah) and daughter Payal.
film highlights the horror of hijack and some incidents that occur in
those horrific minutes. Truly a brilliantly pictured movie made as a tribute to 9-11.
this super-hit movie was directed by Shoaib Mansoor and it starred Shaan
Shahid and Fawad Afzal Khan in lead roles, while Naseeruddin
Shah makes a special appearance in the movie as a Maulana. The movie is
about two singers who are brothers, Mansoor (Shaan Shahid) and
Sarmad (Fawad Khan) and a British-Pakistani lady Mary (Iman
Ali). Sarmad becomes influenced by an Islamic activist and begins
to practice the extremist interpretation of Islam, thus leaving music.
Mansoor instead goes to a musical school in Chicago where he meets
Janie and gets married to her. On the other hand we have Mary, a
British-Pakistani lady who is trapped in her own hypocritical father's
trap and is brought to Pakistan where she's forced to marry her
cousin Sarmad. She tries to escape but is caught by Sarmad who
consummates their marriage by force. When Mary finally manages to
escape, all thanks to the British government and Sarmad's parents,
she takes her father and Sarmad to the court where a Maulana
(Naseeruddin Shah) explains how Islam is being butchered in the name
of war and hatred, bringing the religion forward in a believable and
peaceful manner. Sarmad withdraws from the case and realizes the
damage that he was made to do in the name of religion. Mary is now
free and she returns to the village where she educates the girls. On
the other hand, in Chicago, post the 9/11 attacks, Mansoor was
arrested on the suspicion that he was a terrorist, and was kept in
for a year just because he is a Muslim by religion and originally
belongs to a Muslim country.
Due to the damage of his brain from the torment sessions, he is deported
to Pakistan where he finally begins to recover.
film not only highlights how some people "use" Islam as a religion to
carry out their own missions, but also depicts the aftermath of a long
year of torture of the innocent who are agonized based on mere
This John Abraham, Katrina Kaif and Neil Nitin Mukesh-starring blockbuster, New York
(2009) is a film that tells the story of
Omar Aijaz (Neil Nitin Mukesh), a young Muslim who is arrested and
interrogated by another Muslim FBI officer, Agent Roshan (Irrfan Khan)
because guns were found from a cab that he owned. He is then forced to
on his former college friend who is suspected to be a terrorist - Sam
(John Abraham), a young man married to Omar's college crush Maya
(Katrina Kaif) and father to their son, Danyal (Aidan Wagner). Omar
agrees to help the FBI only to prove his and Sam's innocence. He
to Sam's house and starts living with him and his family. Soon
he comes to know that his dear friend is involved in the planning of
an act of terrorism in order to seek revenge from the FBI because they
had him arrested ten days after the 9/11 attacks and tortured him for
several months simply because he is a Muslim. The film ends with Sam and
death, while Danyal is adopted by Omar. Agent Roshan is seen visiting
Omar in an attempt to bridge the gap that had come between them as they
both had different opinions on how to handle Sam, or anyone in that
aspect, who has been prey to third degree torture merely because they
are suspected to be involved in an act of terrorism.
film highlights how the 9-11 attacks changed the lives of every Muslim living in the USA and
how they suddenly become the victim of racism and discrimination despite being entirely free from any sort of terrorist plans.
Fourth one up is the Saif Ali Khan and Kareena Kapoor Khan's starrer, Kurbaan
(2009). This film tells the story of Avantika (Kareena Kapoor Khan), a
Hindu girl who falls in love with Ehsaan Khan (Saif Ali Khan), a
Muslim man. The couple get married and move to the USA where Avantika's
life changes completely, after meeting her neighbour Salma (Nauheed
informs her about her house-arrest and asks Avantika to inform her
friend Rihana (Dia Mirza). Avantika becomes pregnant and is eagerly
waiting to share this news with Ehsaan but she hears some voice from
her neighbour's house and finds out that Bhaijaan (Om Puri) is
planning to send his son and blast the flight in which Rihana is
travelling. Unfortunately, she gets caught and locks her house,
waiting for Ehsaan. When Ehsaan comes back, Avantika gets to know that
he too, is a part of this terrorist group and married her only to
get a legal visa into the USA. Ehsaan keeps Avantika in house-arrest
and threatens to kill her father in India if she told the truth to
anybody. Avantika sends a voice-message to Rihanna, asking her to not
board in the flight but she unfortunately does and dies. Later,
boyfriend Riyaz (Vivek Oberoi) finds Avantika's voice message for
Rihanna and begins a mission to spoil the plan of Ehsaan and his group
with Avantika's help. The film ends with Riyaz saving many innocent
lives in the local train and Ehsaan having a heart-change to save his
child. He therefore he shoots himself in order to protect his wife.
from others, the film highlights the
corruption of religious beliefs in an attempt to 'rectify' the damage
to Muslims world-over.
My Name Is Khan
Last but definitely not least is one of the best films in the history of Indian Cinema, Karan Johar's My Name is Khan (2010)
starring Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol. It tells the story of Rizwan Khan
(Shah Rukh Khan), a young man who's suffering from Asperger Syndrome yet
has a special ability to repair mechanical things on his own. After his
mother's death, Rizwan goes to San Francisco and starts living with his
younger brother, Zakir (Jimmy Shergill) and his wife Haseena (Sonya
Jehan). In the big city, Rizwan falls in love with Mandira (Kajol Devgn), a
single mother. No sooner love blossoms and the duo get married.
Everything is fine until the 9/11 attack. The beautiful couple and
Mandira's son, Sam (Arjan Aujla) begin to experience post
9/11 prejudice and soon after, a gang of older native American boys
mercilessly kill Sam at soccer practice session because his step-father
is a Muslim. A shattered Mandira blames Rizwan for the death of her son
because she thinks Sam only died because his last name was 'Khan'. She
further sarcastically asks Rizwan to tell the entire American nation and
most importantly the President of the United States of America that his
name is Khan and he is not a terrorist. Rizwan takes Mandira's request
extremely seriously and the rest of the movie shows his journey from one
state of America to another because he wanted to meet George W. Bush
(Brent Mendenhall) - which he fails to, and later the new
President-elect, Barack H. Obama (Christopher B. Duncan). The film
concludes with Rizwan and Mandira going back home together after a lot
of struggle seen by Rizwan including imprisonment and hospitalisation.
Rizwan finally get the opportunity to announce on National TV and in
front of President Obama that indeed his name is Khan, but he is not a
film also highlights the outcome of the 9/11 attacks to Muslims living
in the USA, but what makes it special is Rizwan and Mandira's beautiful
love story and Rizwan's journey to meet the President and prove that not
all people sharing the surname 'Khan' or any Muslim surname in this
case, are terrorists. Indeed a moral to remember!
special mention goes to The Attacks of 26/11, a Hindi docudrama film
directed by Ram Gopal Varma based on the 2008 Mumbai attacks and
starring Sanjeev Jaiswal in his debut film and Nana Patekar.
Bollywood has surely shown many
facets of the 9/11 attacks that teach us, inform us, and bring us all
together. May Bollywood and every film industry continue to approach
this sensitive topic with care and thought, just as the above actors and
directors have. Yes, we must strive to remove the bad from this world,
but we also need to ensure that the innocent are not harmed amidst this
journey. May the souls of those deceased in the 9-11 attacks rest in
Editor(s): Shreya S. and Sonia R.
Graphics: Virina R.
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