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‘Bhavesh Joshi Superhero’ film review: Some heroes are better hidden behind masks

Harshvardhan Kapoor and Priyanshu Painyuli play vigilantes in Vikramaditya Motwane’s movie.

Harshvardhan Kapoor shuffled his way into Hindi cinema with the reincarnation romance Mirzya in 2016. The blandness and diffidence that define Kapoor’s screen persona make him a good fit for Bhavesh Joshi Superhero, but these qualities also ensure that his character gets more interesting only when he puts on a mask and hides his identity to ensure justice through vigilante methods.

The movie isn’t even named after Kapoor’s character, but after that of his collaborator. Bhavesh Joshi (Priyanshu Painyuli) and Sikandar (Kapoor) are friends who want to do something about the rotten state of affairs in Mumbai. Inspired by an India Against Corruption-type social movement, they set up a YouTube channel called Insaaf TV. Their faces concealed by brown paper bags, the friends target indiscriminate tree cutting, public urination and drivers going down the wrong way on no-entry streets. Sikandar outgrows the channel and gets ready to relocate to America, but Bhavesh remains committed to the cause. When a resident tips off Bhavesh about water being pilfred from the municipal supply line, Bhavesh stumbles onto a racket that goes all the way to the top and involves a state minister (Nishikant Kamat).

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Bhavesh Joshi Superhero (2018).

Sikandar gets tangled in Bhavesh’s mission without wanting to. Sikandar’s ambivalence towards and gradual acceptance of Bhavesh’s zeal allow Motwane and co-writers Anurag Kashyap and Abhay Koranne to deconstruct the mythology of the comic book superhero. In one nifty scene, a police sketch of the masked avenger who has attacked a water theft centre serves as shorthand to establish how the Bhavesh Joshi mythos is being built, one blow at a time.

Another reference to a classic Hollywood production nicely ties Bhavesh Joshi Superhero to the film noir genre. Sikandar acquires a bandage on his nose after a brawl, which is a visual homage to Jack Nicholson’s fumbling detective from Chinatown (1974). A more obvious element links Nicholson’s character Jake Gittes to Sikandar – Gittes is investigating a scam that involves the diversion of water supply and lucrative real estate.

Yet another tribute, however, undermines Bhavesh Joshi Superhero’s ambition to be a vigilante movie that is rooted in realism and at a remove from previous fantasy-laden endeavours. The Dark Knight (2008) casts a long shadow over Bhavesh Joshi Superhero, especially in the debates surrounding the ethics of vigilantism and the efficacy of taking on a well-entrenched criminal enterprise. But the local production is far less effective in creating a template that future movies could follow.

Bhavesh Joshi Superhero works beautifully until the interval point before gradually losing its way to laboured plotting, implausible twists and banal moralising. Motwane sets up his characters and themes with tremendous economy and intelligence up until the point where Sikandar has embraced his inner Bhavesh Joshi. As Sikandar stumbles along in his attempt to get to the source of the water mafia, the 153-minute movie moves further away from the cold logic that powered the pre-interval section and collapses into a hodge-podge of training montages and unconvincing acts of payback.

The absence of any actual superheroic qualities in Sikandar combines with his social isolation to make his achievements questionable, if not a flight of fantasy. For all its attempts to root the events in the problems facing Mumbai, the movie exists in the same kind of vacuum in which superheroes and vigilantes from graphic novels thrive. The Insaaf TV activists have no engagement with other civic or political movements in Mumbai. The news media that usually exposes scams and corruption plays the role of background noise in the movie. The vigilantes function in solitude, without the benefit of a family or the semblance of a community to make their activism meaningful.

Bhavesh Joshi Superhero (2018). Image credit: Phantom Films/Eros International.
Bhavesh Joshi Superhero (2018). Image credit: Phantom Films/Eros International.

Bhavesh and Sikandar seem to be orphans who share an apartment and are soldered together in a bromantic relationship. Sikandar does have a girlfriend, Sneha (Shreiyah Sabarwal), but she is ornamental and disappears from view soon after entering the frame.

Even as the movie leaps off the cliff, Motwane comes up with some bravura set pieces, including a chase sequence involving motorcycles, a local railway train and some nifty stunts. Siddharth Diwan’s striking cinematography – much of which unfolds in the night-time and in the rain – captures Mumbai in all its grimy glory. The recurring motif of the colour red enlivens the unrelenting darkness that threatens to swallow up Bhavesh and Sikandar.

The movie puts Mumbai’s locations to excellent use, but the city itself fades into the background as an inspiration for righteous law-breaking. For all its promises of looking at Mumbai’s seemingly intractable problems with a fresh eye, Bhavesh Joshi Superhero offers solutions that are far removed from reality. The film moves away from common sense as it descends into genre territory. It doesn’t help that its leading man fails to take audiences along.

The story’s real superhero isn’t Harshvadhan Kapoor’s dull Sikandar, but Priyanshu Painyuli’s passionate Bhavesh. Painyuli plays Bhavesh with real feeling, and the exact moment of the film’s descent can be pinpointed to the moment when his character cedes ground to Sikandar. The myth takes over the man, but Painyuli ensures that the man matters too.

Priyanshu Painyuli in Bhavesh Joshi Superhero (2018). Image credit: Phantom Films/Eros International.
Priyanshu Painyuli in Bhavesh Joshi Superhero (2018). Image credit: Phantom Films/Eros International.
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The next Industrial Revolution is here – driven by the digitalization of manufacturing processes

Technologies such as Industry 4.0, IoT, robotics and Big Data analytics are transforming the manufacturing industry in a big way.

The manufacturing industry across the world is seeing major changes, driven by globalization and increasing consumer demand. As per a report by the World Economic Forum and Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Ltd on the future of manufacturing, the ability to innovate at a quicker pace will be the major differentiating factor in the success of companies and countries.

This is substantiated by a PWC research which shows that across industries, the most innovative companies in the manufacturing sector grew 38% (2013 - 2016), about 11% year on year, while the least innovative manufacturers posted only a 10% growth over the same period.

Along with innovation in products, the transformation of manufacturing processes will also be essential for companies to remain competitive and maintain their profitability. This is where digital technologies can act as a potential game changer.

The digitalization of the manufacturing industry involves the integration of digital technologies in manufacturing processes across the value chain. Also referred to as Industry 4.0, digitalization is poised to reshape all aspects of the manufacturing industry and is being hailed as the next Industrial Revolution. Integral to Industry 4.0 is the ‘smart factory’, where devices are inter-connected, and processes are streamlined, thus ensuring greater productivity across the value chain, from design and development, to engineering and manufacturing and finally to service and logistics.

Internet of Things (IoT), robotics, artificial intelligence and Big Data analytics are some of the key technologies powering Industry 4.0. According to a report, Industry 4.0 will prompt manufacturers globally to invest $267 billion in technologies like IoT by 2020. Investments in digitalization can lead to excellent returns. Companies that have implemented digitalization solutions have almost halved their manufacturing cycle time through more efficient use of their production lines. With a single line now able to produce more than double the number of product variants as three lines in the conventional model, end to end digitalization has led to an almost 20% jump in productivity.

Digitalization and the Indian manufacturing industry

The Make in India program aims to increase the contribution of the manufacturing industry to the country’s GDP from 16% to 25% by 2022. India’s manufacturing sector could also potentially touch $1 trillion by 2025. However, to achieve these goals and for the industry to reach its potential, it must overcome the several internal and external obstacles that impede its growth. These include competition from other Asian countries, infrastructural deficiencies and lack of skilled manpower.

There is a common sentiment across big manufacturers that India lacks the eco-system for making sophisticated components. According to FICCI’s report on the readiness of Indian manufacturing to adopt advanced manufacturing trends, only 10% of companies have adopted new technologies for manufacturing, while 80% plan to adopt the same by 2020. This indicates a significant gap between the potential and the reality of India’s manufacturing industry.

The ‘Make in India’ vision of positioning India as a global manufacturing hub requires the industry to adopt innovative technologies. Digitalization can give the Indian industry an impetus to deliver products and services that match global standards, thereby getting access to global markets.

The policy, thus far, has received a favourable response as global tech giants have either set up or are in the process of setting up hi-tech manufacturing plants in India. Siemens, for instance, is helping companies in India gain a competitive advantage by integrating industry-specific software applications that optimise performance across the entire value chain.

The Digital Enterprise is Siemens’ solution portfolio for the digitalization of industries. It comprises of powerful software and future-proof automation solutions for industries and companies of all sizes. For the discrete industries, the Digital Enterprise Suite offers software and hardware solutions to seamlessly integrate and digitalize their entire value chain – including suppliers – from product design to service, all based on one data model. The result of this is a perfect digital copy of the value chain: the digital twin. This enables companies to perform simulation, testing, and optimization in a completely virtual environment.

The process industries benefit from Integrated Engineering to Integrated Operations by utilizing a continuous data model of the entire lifecycle of a plant that helps to increase flexibility and efficiency. Both offerings can be easily customized to meet the individual requirements of each sector and company, like specific simulation software for machines or entire plants.

Siemens has identified projects across industries and plans to upgrade these industries by connecting hardware, software and data. This seamless integration of state-of-the-art digital technologies to provide sustainable growth that benefits everyone is what Siemens calls ‘Ingenuity for Life’.

Case studies for technology-led changes

An example of the implementation of digitalization solutions from Siemens can be seen in the case of pharma major Cipla Ltd’s Kurkumbh factory.

Cipla needed a robust and flexible distributed control system to dispense and manage solvents for the manufacture of its APIs (active pharmaceutical ingredients used in many medicines). As part of the project, Siemens partnered with Cipla to install the DCS-SIMATIC PCS 7 control system and migrate from batch manufacturing to continuous manufacturing. By establishing the first ever flow Chemistry based API production system in India, Siemens has helped Cipla in significantly lowering floor space, time, wastage, energy and utility costs. This has also improved safety and product quality.

In yet another example, technology provided by Siemens helped a cement plant maximise its production capacity. Wonder Cement, a greenfield project set up by RK Marbles in Rajasthan, needed an automated system to improve productivity. Siemens’ solution called CEMAT used actual plant data to make precise predictions for quality parameters which were previously manually entered by operators. As a result, production efficiency was increased and operators were also freed up to work on other critical tasks. Additionally, emissions and energy consumption were lowered – a significant achievement for a typically energy intensive cement plant.

In the case of automobile major, Mahindra & Mahindra, Siemens’ involvement involved digitalizing the whole product development system. Siemens has partnered with the manufacturer to provide a holistic solution across the entire value chain, from design and planning to engineering and execution. This includes design and software solutions for Product Lifecycle Management, Siemens Technology for Powertrain (STP) and Integrated Automation. For Powertrain, the solutions include SINUMERIK, SINAMICS, SIMOTICS and SIMATIC controls and drives, besides CNC and PLC-controlled machines linked via the Profinet interface.

The above solutions helped the company puts its entire product lifecycle on a digital platform. This has led to multi-fold benefits – better time optimization, higher productivity, improved vehicle performance and quicker response to market requirements.

Siemens is using its global expertise to guide Indian industries through their digital transformation. With the right technologies in place, India can see a significant improvement in design and engineering, cutting product development time by as much as 30%. Besides, digital technologies driven by ‘Ingenuity for Life’ can help Indian manufacturers achieve energy efficiency and ensure variety and flexibility in their product offerings while maintaining quality.

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The above examples of successful implementation of digitalization are just some of the examples of ‘Ingenuity for Life’ in action. To learn more about Siemens’ push to digitalize India’s manufacturing sector, see here.

This article was produced on behalf of Siemens by the Scroll.in marketing team and not by the Scroll.in editorial staff.