Guest post by Michaela Owens.
Four years ago, I watched a film I never forgot. Every week for my musical theatre class, we would watch a range of musicals, from Gentlemen Prefer Blondes to Rent. I had heard of all of them, except for an export from Bollywood called Om Shanti Om. Only one person in my class knew the film, leaving everyone else flabbergasted when we watched it. Throughout the screening, we went through the emotional gamut, alternating between laughing until we cried and tearing up at remarkably tender moments.
The plot isn’t exactly simple. It involves reincarnation, true and unrequited love, dreams, and friendship. I’m being vague on purpose—going into the film with no knowledge allowed me to be blindsided by all of its crazy glory. Om Shanti Om was an absolute experience. It excels at balancing sheer silliness, earnest melodrama, and surprising suspense because it’s always heartfelt. The wild musical numbers are a testament to the joy that musicals have been bringing to audiences for years, and the acting is done superbly by all. As an introduction to Bollywood, I couldn’t have asked for a better movie to whet my appetite.
Michaela Owens is a senior hoping to become a film professor and writer. She never stops thinking about classic Hollywood, thanks to her mother’s introduction to it, and she has volunteered as an usher at the IU Cinema since 2016.