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One idiot is a 30 minute Hindi movie. It is an initiative by the IDFC Foundation to educate the youth of India to be financially independent. It is directed by Amol Gupte of Stanley ka Dabba fame, writer of Taare Zameen Par. The movie was launched on 23 November in Mithibai College, Mumbai. It has been shown in many colleges like JJ College of Arts, Mumbai, IIT Chennai. Eventually, the foundation aims to cover colleges across the country. This article is review of the movie.

One idiot

One idiot the movie


The movie is the story of  Shri Shanti Prasad Dwarka Nath Bhargav(Bhargav Krishna), called as Idiot, Uncle Bugs.  He is the neighborhood “Uncle ji” who, by the looks of it, does nothing in life and lives a frugal life. Krishna is a miser, who haggles with the vegetable vendor for every rupee, has been wearing the same rubber slippers for over four years. He is a laughing stock of society’s young people, Prashant and his gang. But Uncle Bugs is liked by Chota, Prashant’s younger brother. Chota not only relishes Uncle Bug’s lavish lunch every Sunday, but also takes gets ‘akal ka ladoo’ (sweet for brain) ,lessons on how to save and make one’s money grow.

Prashant comes to know this when he needs money to buy expensive tickets for his girl-friend and he finds out that Chota has accumulated about Rs 62,000. Chota reveals to his brother that this has been possible by investing  gifts, he got from relatives and friends, saving from his pocket money,shield money, in SIP or systematic investment plans. By starting early he will see his money grow. He also informs Prashant that appearances are deceptive  and Uncle Bugs networth is Rs 100 crore! Uncle Bug is able to enjoy his passion, music and cooking, because he started saving systematically ever since he was young himself. This is in contrast to Prashant and Chota’s parents, played by Raymon Singh and Rahul Singh, who are seen struggling between credit card bills, monthly installments and expensive aspirations.

One idiot chota and Prashant

One idiot chota and Prashant

We then get to see Uncle Bugs in action talking on phone about,  buying insurance only when you need it, don’t bundle it with investment,putting money in stock market when market slides as one needs to Be fearful when others are greedy and greedy when others are fearful. Prashant messages his friends about net worth of Idiot and the news spreads like wildfire in society. Prashant’s gang apologises to Uncle Bugs. Uncle Bugs invites them for a pasta and gyaan session.

one idiot gyan session

One idiot gyan session

While making pasta Uncle Bugs explains how to make money run, grow. On Spending Money , Uncle Bugs quotes Warren Buffet, if you buy things that you don’t need, one day you will have to sell things that you do need. He tells them one should save but keeping money in bank and investing in fixed deposits is like one’s and two’s of cricket match. But to hit 4s and 6s one need to invest through Systematic Investment Plan. Movie ends with Chotu dreaming of following in Idiot’s footsteps, going to market like Idiot in slippers with a basket and instructing his driver to take parents in Rolls Royce.

One idiot Chota dream's :Grown up with Rolls Royce

One idiot Chota dream's :Grown up with Rolls Royce

The movie is strewn with real-time interviews of young college going crowd on what does money mean to you? What are their thoughts on investing. Answers like I don’t know, never thought shows the unawareness and/or unwillingness of the youth to save and invest.

Where to watch

One can watch it at OneIdiot’s Videos webpage,  On YouTube. One can also discuss it at Facebook Page,  It has been screened in various colleges. Response has been great

One idiot at colleges

One idiot at colleges

Responses From comments on  One Idiot’s at YouTube

  • This movie was a huge hit at Network FP Exhibition with 300 planners volunteering,
  • A great video motivating youngsters to save….
  • The message is presented in a powerful way.
  • An excellent effort from IDFC. It is a must see video for all youngsters.

From One Idiot at IIT Madras.

  • When Bugs uncle quotes Warren Buffet: “If you buy things you don’t need, one day you will have to sell the things you do need”, the audience erupted in thunderous applause.
  • There were peels of laughter when Chotu asks the bench-gang if they had 50 bucks and walk off to his match in style and when he explains SIP to his elder brother

About IDFC

IDFC Limited is India’s leading integrated infrastructure finance player providing end to end infrastructure financing and project implementation services.

IDFC Foundation provides thought leadership and advocacy in areas of infrastructure policy and governance, with a thrust on sustainable infrastructure.

IDFC and Natixis Global Asset Management (NGAM) have entered into a strategic partnership to form IDFC AMC in 2000. It has many Funds in Equity,Debt and Hybrid.

IDFC had also came up with a movie  Bachat, Nivesh, Badhat (13 min) which is also a good watch!

Our Review

  • It is an attempt at educating students who will soon be graduating or people who have just become financially independent. We at bemoneyaware strongly feel that We don’t allow people to drive without taking a driving test yet allow them to enter complex financial world without much financial education. It is great that such initiatives are being taken.
  • A movie is better than a lecture on financial independence or a power point presentation.
  • The message of Start Early is great. How Chotu tells his brother how much he will have when he will be his brother’s age, his parent’s age, his grandparents age.
  • The other messages are also thrown in: buy insurance only when you need it and don’t bundle it with investment, invest little through Systematic Investment Plan, keeping money in bank does not make money grow much. Though risk on investing through SIP and asset allocation are not mentioned.
  • It shows how people are caught up in spending. While Young people are busy spending their Parent’s money at mall, on friends (especially girl friends) the parents are also not far behind. Prashant’s father has spent lots of money on his six watches, his mother wants to spend on upholstery. They have 6 credit cards to pay and are struggling even to pay minimum. When Idiot’s children are not interested to see show because the show ticket is high (3000 per ticket), far-off when they can happily watch it on TV next few days , you want to clap!
  • It also shows how modern Urban India family is caught up in EMI’s,Loan and are caught in rat race. Prashant’s father has to take office call even on Sunday(Laptops and mobiles have made Indians work 24 X7)
  • Shows how people are caught up in appearances and how appearances  are deceptive. Knowing that One idiot who haggles with vegetable seller had 100 crore was a shocking news even to the vegetable seller. As Chota says “Don’t judge book by it’s cover!”
  • Music of move is soft, soothing!

The movie has the heart in the right place and it is a great effort BUT we found it lacking in few places, which we feel, if taken care of in future will rock.

  • It is in Hindi, about 40-50% of the movie are Hindi dialogues. Atleast sub-titles should be there (Pattabiraman M, for screening  of  One Idiot at IIT Madras created subtitles on notepad for the Hindi speaking parts(after trying out a couple of free subtitling software) which came out okay. If you need it for your own local screening can contact him.
  • 100 crore. Networth of Uncle Bugs as 100 crore. Digest nahin hota! Boss in India becoming a crorepati is still an achievement. Bollywood movies are talked about in 100 crore club. Politicians are talked about in 100 crore club Rs. 100 Crore’ club of India’s richest politicians or richest Indians which are a separate league altogether. FYI networth of richest Indian in 2012 was Mukesh Ambani with net worth of $21 billion.
  • The message to start SIP (Systematic Investment Plan) is good but the risks associated with investing in market or diversifying into PPF, Fixed deposits is not mentioned at all. In Idiot’s explains investing in SIP is like 4s and 6s of cricket. But investing is not a T20 match, ones and twos(keeping money in bank, fixed deposits) are still significant in ODIs(One Day International)
  • Message to start early is more in words “when I am at at parent’s age then … “, so abstract. Maybe showing coins growing (A little animation after all chotu is kid) would have helped!
  • If I say I want to follow Idiot and get 100 crore, Just how much money, at what return, for how long is required. Quoting from Economic Times How to save Rs 1 crore in 15 years
  • Investing in PROVIDENT FUND, PPF at 8.5% return Monthly savings required in Rs 27,641
  • Investing in FIXED DEPOSITS at 9.5% returns Monthly savings required is Rs 25,256
  • Investing in EQUITY FUNDS for returns at 12% Monthly savings required is Rs 20,017
  • Investing in STOCKS for returns at 15% Monthly savings required is Rs 14,959

The image from ET Wealth below shows advantage of Starting Early to End Rich. (Click on image to enlarge)

Start Early End Rich

Start Early End Rich

  • Characters don’t seem to connect. Chotu seems to big for his boots, Bugs family seems so artificial and Idiot does not inspire. He has 100 crore and he haggles with a subzi waala for 50 paisa , 1 rupee, Take away 100 crore and you can see how he is butt of jokes in the society.  He is shown buying vegetables, cleaning windows, making food for his family. All his business transactions are done on phone. When does he do his research? When I saw the movie I envied One Idiot’s wife “She is so lucky to to have a 100 crorepati husband. Infact she is lucky to have a husband who does all the work!” . Missed the sensitivity of characters in Stanley ka Dabba and Idiots of 3 Idiots.
  • Breaking into younger brother piggy bank to get ticket of a music show for his girl-friend, How desperate can one get!
  • Once net worth of Idiot is revealed ,society people, subzi waala , kids are surprised (or was it shocked). No one is running to Idiot to ask for money, advice. Where is the media with its breaking news?
  • Warren Buffet is quoted often. But how many of young know about him!
  • Chotu dreams to grow up to be an Idiot and have a Rolls Royce. Cost of Rolls-Royce Ghost (the least expensive Rolls Royce in India on 18th Jan 2013) is Rs. 2,55,62,500 (255 lakh or 2.55 crore). What about Idiot’s message If you buy things you don’t need, one day you will have to sell the things you do need”, what about 4 saal purani chappal.

Related Articles :

Keeping focus on glass being half-full, we would highly recommend you to watch the movie( One Idiot’s Videos webpage, YouTube), watch it with kids. Take this opportunity to sit and talk with them about money, about starting early,investing, spending.  Also visit IDFC OneIdiot webpage for great articles. Did you watch the movie? What did you feel about it? What do you think our kids need to learn about money? How did you learn about money?


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