Christopher Nolan’s latest film, ‘Oppenheimer,’ has found itself embroiled in controversy due to a particular scene featuring the titular character, portrayed by actor Cillian Murphy. In this scene, Oppenheimer is shown engaging in sexual intercourse while reciting verses from the Bhagavad Gita, a revered Hindu scripture. The scene has sparked heated debates on social media, with opinions sharply divided between those demanding its removal and others defending Nolan’s artistic choices.
The depiction in question has deeply offended many members of the audience, who took to social media platforms to express their outrage, accusing Nolan of disrespecting their religious sentiments. Uday Mahurkar, the Information Commissioner of the Union government, has also added his voice to the chorus of disapproval, vehemently criticising the filmmaker for the controversial scene. In a recent interview, Mahurkar stated, “The depiction of the Bhagavad Gita in this manner is an insult to our sacred book, which holds profound significance not only for the Hindu community but also conveys profound messages to the entire world. This portrayal undermines our values and heritage, and it is deeply offensive to the Hindu community.”
Twitter users also voiced their outrage, with some calling for a boycott of ‘Oppenheimer,’ criticising Hollywood and the West for allegedly failing to depict Hinduism in a positive and accurate manner. Critics argue that this portrayal reduces a profound spiritual text to mere tokenism, trivialising its importance to the Hindu faith. Moreover, there are concerns about cultural appropriation and misrepresentation.
However, ‘Oppenheimer’ has received positive reviews in India and has seen remarkable success at the box office, surpassing the mark of ₹30 crore within just two days since its release. The film, produced by Universal Pictures, features a star-studded cast, including Robert Downey Jr, Emily Blunt, Matt Damon, Florence Pugh, Kenneth Branagh, and Rami Malek in significant roles.