«The Mahabharata»

Georges Corraface as Duryodhana
Also staring Vittorio Mezzogiorno, Andrzej Sewerin, Yoshi Oida, Bruce Myers, Malika Sarabai
Directed by Peter Brook
Produced by Les Productions du Troisieme Etage, Channel Four, the Brooklyn Academy of Music
Distributed by Reiner Moritz Associates Ltd.
Date: 1989
Photos: Gilles Abegg
«The Mahabharata»

“The Mahabharata”, adapted from the epic masterpiece which gave birth to Hindouism, was filmed in the historically famous Joinville Studios in France.

“The Mahabharata”, literally, “the great story of mankind”, is based on the conflict between two ruling families, The Kauravas and The Pandavas. The Kauravas, born of the earth and The Pandavas, by divine intervention, are cousins who are bound to destroy each other, taking the entire world down with them as they battle for control in an apocylyptic conflict with Krishna, hardly impartial, as war counselor to the Pandavas.

As in the classic scene from “The Bagavad Ghita”, Krishna deems it fair to give the Pandavas’ leader an enlightening lesson on the art of war. Is too much knowledge a burden or a blessing when going into battle? Nobly motivated neither to win nor to lose, but to accomplish his dharma, (part destiny, part duty) each character must accept the consequences of his actions and no one will complete the cycle of birth/life/death without undergoing significant change for himself and the world.

Georges plays Duryodhana, The Kauravas King, a notorious materialist who has dishonestly gained control of the world’s empire, convinced as he is that he is the only legitimate and capable ruler, sovereign by birth, and superior to The Pandavas King, whom he disdains for his idealism and naivete.

By his will, perserverance and obstination, Duryodhana will force The Pandavas to go into battle with full comittment for their belief in justice, yet for victory by any means necessary — even devious, dishonest, shameful. Previously confined to the spiritual world, The Pandavas are obliged to relate to this struggle at the human level. War at this dimension brings about a new equilibrium on earth.

Duryodhan, last to die in this war, is proud to have lived his life as he lived it: loving his people, his wives and his friends, generous, and passionate, a devoted warrior celebrating, in his way, the life he was destined to live.