- Sex & Drugs
- 25 Jul 23
The Cillian Murphy-led biopic featured a scene in which the sacred Hindu text, the Bhagavad Gita, is recited during a sex scene. Indian social media users have threatened to boycott the film in response, calling the scene a "scathing attack on Hinduism".
Christopher Nolan's Oppenheimer, starring Irish actor Cillian Murphy as the American "father of the atomic bomb", has come under fire as Indian audiences react to a sex scene during which a sacred Hindu text was read.
The scene, in which Murphy's Oppenheimer recites a verse from the text while engaging in sex with Florence Pugh's character Jane Tatlock, has caused a stir among Indian audiences. The Nationalist group Save Culture Save India (SCSI) Foundation responded to the scene, calling it a "disturbing attack on Hinduism."
MOVIE OPPENHEIMER’S ATTACK ON BHAGWAD GEETA
Press Release of Save Culture Save India Foundation
Date: July 22, 2023
It has come to the notice of Save Culture Save India Foundation that the movie Oppenheimer which was released on 21st July contains scenes which make a scathing… pic.twitter.com/RmJI0q9pXi
— Uday Mahurkar (@UdayMahurkar) July 22, 2023
In an open letter posted to social media, SCSI founder Uday Mahurkar called the text "one of the most revered scriptures of Hinduism," and that the scene "amounts to waging a war on the Hindu community and almost appears to be part of a larger conspiracy by anti-Hindu forces." He went on to implore Nolan to remove the scene from the film and insisted that should Nolan not comply, "it would be deemed as a deliberate assault on Indian civilisation."
However, some Indian audiences do not agree with Mahurkar's warning. They warned that Mahurkar was creating a "mountain out of a molehill", and that the accusations "take away from the real issues happening to and within [the Hindu] community."
"There is nothing morally wrong with the scene," wrote a Twitter user, "Stop overreacting and treating sex as a taboo."
Oppenheimer himself has called the Bhagavad Gita one of his favorite books, even learning the ancient Sanskrit the text is published in. It is clear the Gita had a profound impact on him, and he is recorded as reciting an excerpt from the book two days before the first atomic bomb was tested in the New Mexico desert.
Despite the controversy, the film has amassed over €5M in India since its release on Friday. In the UK and Ireland (reported together) the film grossed over €12M, and the double release of Oppenheimer and Greta Gerwig's Barbie created the busiest weekend ever in some Irish cinemas, including Dublin's The Light House art-house cinema.
- Sex & Drugs
- 13 Nov 23