Best Bengali movies of 2013 – First Quarter!

How are you movie watchers from the land of Rabindranath Tagore and Satyajit Ray? I hear, they cut cakes together now-a- days! Celebrated their birthdays recently!  The film industry of this part of the world is seeing some change. Some change for the good. I believe every time I am discussing something with someone from this good old place which was once called Calcutta (now known as Kolkata), the refinement of the thoughts always reflect cream and something else that raises the quality of the discussion. So, discussing movies has always been a pleasure! Movies critically analyzed and then pitched with mixed emotions and changed climaxes. I am sure you did this with your silver screen peer as well.

Experiment, Analysis, Conclusion...
Experiment, Analysis, Conclusion…

Bengali films, rather the new age Bengali films have really managed to make place in the hearts of urban Bengal. However, there are still senseless movies produced for the huge audience in the remote areas of the state. I would not chastise those producers and directors for capitalizing illiteracy; however, I would like to let them know, that we know as well. There is a very thin line between senseless and sensible in terms of creativity and here lies the question. For those who mint money with item numbers and rain dances, are they happy to serve their hunger with these or have completely murdered their urge for excellence in terms of creativity and inspiration!

Recently, I saw “Goynar Baksho by Aparna Sen and the national award winning movie “Shobdo” by Kaushik Ganguli. I loved them for entirely different reason, although I can only say that both of them (the directors) were brilliant in their approach. One explained contemporary commercial movies and the wide window it has to improve. The chances where one can improvise and make it an out and out entertainer without letting the audience know that its fiction. On the other hand, Shobdo was an attempt for which I should thank the producer first. I don’t know how Mr. Ganguli managed to gather enough courage and money to go and hunt for a dream film like this. I was overwhelmed with the editing, cinematography and specially the sound effect of Shobdo. It was rightly felicitated with the National award in Sound Design.

goynar baksho

Speaking more about Goynar Baksho, Aparna Sen adapted a story of Mr. Sirshendu Mukhopadhyay and brilliantly screened it with Mousumi Chatterjee excelling in her flick as the ghost Pishima protecting her closet of jewelries. Konkona Sen Sharma, Saswata Mukherjee, Paran Bandyapadhyay, Shrabanti and others did exceedingly well. The director used some apt visual imagery to portray the three generations attached with that particular box of jewelries. You can still watch the movie to know more about it.

Aparna-Sen

I was rather interested in describing a well made commercial film that can also fit into the genre of art films. If I am through to you, you can reciprocate with names like Hawa Bodol in Bengali or something like Barfi in Hindi. Aren’t they commercial films? They are thoroughly commercial ones. The ones with high box office risks, but the way they are presented brings this outlook of intelligent movies. The film makers who tend to reason the prospects of Masala movies can learn how to cook a quality recipe from film makers like Aparna Sen. She thanks her producer for realizing her long back dream script into a successful movie with a gesture indigenous to the crispy dialogues of Pishima!

Well, AnandaBajar Patrika – the eminent newspaper of Bengal rated Shobdo with an all time best of nine and a half on ten! Shobdo is acclaimed with a national award for sound and one for the best Bengali movie. Screened in various international film festivals and rated highly. Numerous reviews and many a wonderful words spent to describe this lifetime work of Kauhik Ganguli. How should I describe it now? A story about a Foley artist (Ritwick Chakroborty) who gets over-obsessed with the creativity involved in his work and fails to register normal human voices. He becomes engrossed in background sounds, precisely the free sounds in the nature. So, his wife (Raima Sen) becomes worried about this abnormal behavior and takes him to a psychiatrist (Churni Ganguly). She chases the case to its end and I would love to realize something what she actually discovers. Human beings like them are labeled abnormal, however, we the so called sane section of the society are more vulnerable. Anyways, go and watch the sound of Shobdo in case you missed it in the theater!

kaushik-ganguly shobdo-movie

Shobdo, is a film about a film technician or rather sound artist. We hardly wait in the theaters when the size of the font decreases. We hardly realize their contribution towards the movie. They don’t know about us and we don’t try to know about them. The film was special to me for many reasons. This was one of the major ones. It was wonderfully crafted barring a small section where Victor Bannerjee (respect) was probably over used. I was mesmerized with the acting skills of Raima Sen in this particular movie. The director was very particular about the continuity and rightly describes a splendid art film. Shobdo was articulately designed for the hearts of a niche crowd that applauds good work, rather exceptional work.

To wrap up a heart feeling discussion about two recent Bengali films, I would like to express my expectations and excitement for the entire year. I wish like the last year, I get to watch a flock of differently beautiful Bengali movies. Some of them are already waiting to hit the screens. Fingers crossed for “Ganesh Talkies” by Anjan Dutt.

Signing off from the desk of mymotionpicture till I find a SOUND jewelry Box to sponsor my movie…

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Groove with MASEEHA in an exclusive performance for ‘HER’

Recently, I got the opportunity to befriend a few wonderful musicians of my city. I was awestruck with the excellence and serenity of their music as I witnessed them improvising their original numbers in their rehearsal pad last Friday. MASEEHA, as they would call themselves, encompasses a diverse range of genres. Be it Folk, Sufi, country, pop or mainstream rock, the band continues to experiment with melodies and lyrics.

As I was in conversation with the band members, I was etching towards superlative degrees. The primary objective of the visit was popularizing an upcoming live show at ICCR auditorium, Kolkata. Cometh the 11th of May, MASEEHA will be performing for ‘Her’ – a show dedicated to the burning issues related of our deceased society. A live music show at the ICCR auditorium is organized and will be dedicated predominantly to the fairer sex of this planet. MASEEHA with their indie original numbers and some popular folk songs will surely strike the right chords of your mind as they states their views and claim equality in the society.

Irene, the lead singer of MASEEHA was speaking about inner conscience, where Subhomoy, the bassist was more concerned about the anarchy in the society. As I was getting engrossed in their original songs, the lyricist and the drummer spoke. Arjyesh, who writes the lyrics for MASEEHA was describing his down to earth feelings and his perception about life. Monty, the lead and rhythm guitarist at MASEEHA was explaining how this mystic world exchanges views on issues that are so seldom addressed. Aviiraj, the soulful keyboardist of MASEEHA was telling about their efforts and their plans to voice their opinions through their music. They uniquely addressed something so pleasant, they wanted equality in the society, and they want to usher new hopes in the minds of common people that stand for truth and innocence.

MASEEHA, comprising of individuals with less materialistic and more spiritual inclinations towards life, believes in following the decree of the spirit. Reaching out to souls, regardless of caste and creed, is the aim of MASEEHA’s music. With  developing eminence and growing popularity in the city, the recent event will draw attention of premier music lovers and professionals of the industry. Make sure you collect your passes before they sublime.

L-R: Monty, Subhomoy, Irene, Arjyesh and Aviiraj
L-R: Monty, Subhomoy, Irene, Arjyesh and Aviiraj

MASEEHA’s line up:

Irene Sarkar– Lead and backing vocals

Monty Sen – Lead and Rhythm Guitars

Subhomoy Mitra– Bass

Arjyesh Ray– Drums, percussion, lyrics

Aviiraj Sen– Keyboards

Soumyajyoti Ghosh– Flute

This forthcoming show of MASEEHA will genuinely sing you an array of issues of the society that should be treated on priority. Materialistic expectations and inhuman feelings will take a back seat and your inner conscience should come to rescue the paralyzed system of this society. Be it the age old discrimination of man and women or a male chauvinism that drives the entire calendar of events. Let’s stand up with MASEEHA and voice our opinion against social violence and sexual discrimination.

For passes and more information; please visit MASEEHA at their facebook page and don’t forget to drop in at ICCR on the 11th of this month at 1730 hours.

Film criticism – Expecting more insight in film making…

In an attempt to describe and rate movies, the basic ethnicity of human instincts gets deceived very spontaneously. A film get released, hits the theaters, welcomed or rejected by audiences and then people speak about its success or failure stories. The entire routine of film making is more than what is described by the film critics in India. I wouldn’t have hesitated to name a few of them; however, a sense of gratification encapsulates my latent wishes. I am not writing this to criticize film critics in India, rather to reform the whole practice of film criticism in India. In one of my other articles in my-motion-picture, I voiced my opinion about development of authentic motion picture criticism in India and here I would like to speak some basic things about a proper film criticism. An expert observation and a comprehensive perception of the entire film should be the words of the film critic who happens to earn his living through these appraisals and excerpts.

I got filmed!
I got filmed!

If Pather Panchali marked an era in Indian film industry where potential contenders are recognized worldwide, the director of the film, Satyajit Ray should be accountable for his contribution towards the development of the film industry. Be it the Mumbai industry (Bollywood) or the prominent regional film industries in India. In one of his writings, Ray spoke about the dicey reviews and unprofessional approach of the film critics not only in India but also a few hailing from some developed countries of the world. In his words, “Since film critics repeatedly said that Pather Panchali was my best film, it naturally evoked a question in my mind; hasn’t the effect of criticism been beneficial to my art?

Long times; many a springs and autumns are wasted. We are living in 2013 and still film criticism in India is merely a profession where the so called intellectuals draw money for describing box office reports and how an item number is so high on the list of a commercial radio channel chart-buster! Pity… In terms of a promising criticism, a genuine film critic should ideally be a bridge between the film maker and the audiences. Some of the films made might not be ideal for the audiences of a particular region. Or, an adaptation from a novel might require some basic changes which should be readily accessible and reasonable to a film critic. However, the critics I read are mostly after the directors if a film fails to appeal in the first week. Similarly they praise some senseless cinemas which might see some bright opening due to the presence of a super star. I would echo Ray again and would like to request these film reviewers to drop their pens and rather establish their identity as someone from the crowd.

A film critic should have the knowledge and insight of the entire process of film making from scripting to editing. He should be clear with his sentences and descriptions which will enlighten the audiences about the pros and cons of a movie. I personally believe that a film maker or director hardly needs to know anything more about his own film. He knows where his movie excelled and what the limitations were. He, as a director has anchored the entire team to produce something that he would expect audience to relate to. In this scenario, if a critic cannot substantiate his words and describe the merits and demerits of the film, it is surely going to irritate the director. A critic, as I already mentioned, should recognize that a film is not a personal creation rather a joint venture. He should understand that a bad movie is not entirely the result of poor direction; a blockbuster is similarly a collective effort where the director should get a major share of the praise.

Black reels hurting arty Indians.The problem does not evoke a sense of emergency among the readers of this article. Accepted! But, as an audience you should also accept your money going wayward. You tend to believe reports from people who hardly connect with the art of film making. Bribes and personal endorsement from the producers ensure the box office results and then after those cold and rough three hours you have a tendency to accept the bleak prospects of a mindless film. A good movie fails to reach more audiences due to the similar reasons. How will the audience assess a movie when the preacher speaks ill of it without knowing the basic aesthetics of film making.

In this entire course of the article, I wanted to encourage new-age film students to come in front and take up the onus of describing films and its deeper implications. Film is a form of art that requires the collective effort of other artists and thus as a critic you should have the understanding of each of those sections, at least the basics. Satyajit Ray’s famous quote on his decision of making music for his films, “Ever since Two Daughters I’ve been composing my own music.” speaks vividly about the importance of a basic aptitude in all the forms of art that constitute a movie.

Motion pictures or films are almost like daughters to a director. They are nourished, fed, molded, reformed and corrected for so many reasons to be that piece of art. The art that causes tears and laughter in the theaters, that creation which demands claps and praises from the audiences and that piece of commerce which will fetch trust and money for the producer who believed in the concept of the film.  So, let film criticism evolve as an art in itself and not a duping profession that manages to draw a salary out of some dead words.

Signing off from the desk of my-motion-picture till critics rises with a new sun as the key-light of scenes and cinemas in India…

 

Himmatwala TinKu…

Little Tinku was waiting for his Parents to come back after the movie..

Sceirch!!!

Dad: What the heck are you doing with mY LaptOp?

Little TinkU: I was collecting Tweet-Reviews of  Sajid Bhai’s “Himmatwala” dad! You love him So much!! 😛

Mom: WhAt?

Dad: Do you have a D(k)ispirin?

Little TinkU:   Thank God, That was Friday.!. 😉 Today is April Fools Day! How was the movie Mom, :O 😛 Dad? (hand’s out the Paper and leaves…)

15803214-tweeter-blue-bird-sleeping  Some funny tweets of people who watched the “all time Classic” – Sajid    Khan’s “Himmatwala”...

1. @vikrammlmehra: “If u r feelin stressed ……Remember, someone somewhere is watching Himmatwala ;)”

2. @RGVzoomin: Dont know what to feel about this message I got…RGV KI AAG SEEMS LIKE A CULT CLASSIC COMPARED TO SAJID KHAN Ka HIMMATWALA

3. @kaliom: Just to make Sajid Khan not make any more horrendous movies..skip Himmatwala for our better future..

4. @Aviation_Freak: #JokeOfTheDay ” Virat Kohli blocked Tamanna after watching #Himmatwala 😀

5. @dev_11sept: The survivors of ‘Himmatwala’ will be given a prize. It will be a dvd of ‘RGV ki Aag’

6. @anuradhasays: There’s so much original, creative, fun work happening in entertainment. But all I hear is about ‘Himmatwala’:(

7. @JayHind: Himmatwala is not a remake of Himmatwala but Sajid Khan’s remake of Life of Pi. Ajay & The Tiger.

8. @kamaalrkhan: After watching #Himmatwala you will be sure that all awesome 3; Farah khan, Sajid khan & Shirish Kunder are competitors to prove who is worst?

9. @prasad_salvi: Compared to Himmatwala, Housefull is a masterpiece and Heyy Baby is an all time great movie.

10. @rsparam: A few mistakes in life make u realize how strong you really are.. Himmatwalla makes me realize I am a Himmatwala.

11. @keirron0009: Two minutes of silence for those who have advanced booked “Himmatwala” tickets and turned their Good Friday into a Bad one 😀

12. @Sadafzahra: #BreakingNews… Rahul Gandhi to visit the victims of #Himmatwala soon.. 😀  tweeter

13. @Itsmy_rule: Sir Ravindra Jadeja suffered from memory loss after watching Himmatwala.

I couldn’t help but post this superb compilation! I put that as in Little TinKu’s joke!! I mean, its Not even a joke! Its real bravery!

Serves them well, these directors and producers who push themselves harder every day to produce these senseless movies! Effing Mindless!!!

Read a review after this to know about seriously!

Truffaut: from “400 Doors” to “Confidentially Yours”!

Francois TruffautThere are two kinds of directors: those who have the public in mind when they conceive and make their films, and those who don’t consider the public at all. For the former, cinema is an art of spectacle; for the latter, it is an individual adventure. There is nothing intrinsically better about one or the other; it’s simply a matter of different approaches…”

François Truffaut

Did You Know: As the french director drew inspiration from films he witnessed during the war his youth compelled him to criticize some senseless movies and mindless films. He was not sure whether he wanted to be a film maker or a critique. However, he ended up in being an institution of films and film making! francois_truffaut1

Filmography of François Truffaut

Hitchcock loves to be misunderstood, because he has based his whole life around misunderstandings.”

— François Truffaut on Hitchcock.

francois_truffaut

Hawa Bodol review – Analysing dreams!

hawa-BadalAs I mentioned in the preview that Hawa Bodol will certainly evoke some unsung strings of friendship, the movie actually offered some more gastronomy to chew upon. In this limited space of expression, I would rather put some light on how this entirely comic drama actually spoke about split personality of a normal human character. How a stable, retrained house husband becomes a hooligan in the company of his old school friend and how an unruly, struggling rock-star yarns to settle down in his life and cater a family with a sweet wife and a child. It was more about realizing dreams and it was more about realizing that dreams are often misleading!

hawabodol1 hawabodol Let’s speak about human emotions and some basic genre on which human emotions actually roam about. It’s like that orbit on which this planet revolves around the sun. The basic human that he is and some other personalities that influence him make those different emotional orbital positions, although incase of human beings, we are usually trained to occupy the normal positions as fast as possible!

hawabodol2 hawa-bodol-630-march-25Was that difficult? If no, Hawa Bodol was that simple and if you have any questions about the statement above, you should watch Hawa Bodol at least once.. Oh! I forgot to mention it was a terrible laugh-a-thon throughout the movie and the span was hardly realized baring some middle B-plots of the movie. Coming back to the movie, director Parambrata Chatterjee was spot on with his message. He wanted this film to have that light hearted approach and speak some of the unsaid whims and fancies of every heart. The characters in the movie played by Rudranil Ghosh and the director himself will definitely touch the hearts of everyone. They were hardly comprehended as acting professionals. You will be happier to believe them as real characters creating nuisance all the way.

hawa-bodolAnindya Bose as the script-writer generated a powerful storyline along with catchy one-liners that are still on the air. Some of the conversation among the two old friends played by Rudranil and Parambrata were so hilarious that I missed some of the following dialogues. The women leads, Raima Sen and Neha Panda enacted their roles with precision. Although, Raima had a very little scope to display her acting skills, Neha tried her best to convince her critics. The music by Indradip Dasgupta along with some harmonious playback singing by Sunidhi Chauhan, Arijit Singh, Sahana Bajpayee, Mohan Kannan, Saptarshi Mukherjee and Vishal Dadlani was aptly timed and were innocently refreshing. Cameos from other actors including Kaushik Ganguly, Komolika, Dwijen Bandyapadhay and others were added flavors of the movie not to forget the kid-star Kabir who enacted the mischievous son of Parambrata!

hawa badalDescribing the storyline of Hawa Bodol in terms of explaining complex emotions of human beings would be the right review I thought. How wonderful it would have been if each one of us had the liability to flaunt our inner desires and not compromise small scale happiness on the name of relationships! Well, it will be a topic to debate upon. However, I was mesmerized with the thought that this movie actually spoke about mental health. It spoke about well being of an individual amidst all professional and emotional turmoil. Jeet and Raj, bonded with a friendship that describes their childhood exchanged their lives to break free. Breaking free from the shackles that keep them away from being that perfect happy human being they longs to be. Amusing in terms of a movie plot, yet so relevant to the situation of every odd human being who goes to the hotel and wishes to order something ordered from the next table! I mean metaphors in all aspects unless I was too hard to comprehend!

from the director's POV
from the director’s POV

In a nutshell, Hawa Bodol was a movie that tried to describe the hidden urge of a soul to be free. Free from worries that actually shouldn’t have been there, free from routines that hurt your cozy mind, free from rules that strangulate your otherwise simple life and bring in worldly concerns that ideally replace happiness and peace of mind. Having said that, the change of personality in Rudranil and Parambrata as they step into each others’ characters are predominantly entertaining. Inspired from a Hollywood comedy, “Change Up”, Hawa Bodol was indigenously Indian and very much Bengali for all the above reasons and may be more. All credits to the cast and crew of Hawa Bodol and a big congratulation to Parambrata Chattopadhay for his second film (after Jio KAKA) and definitely for evolving into this serious and sensible director that this nation badly needs!

Signing off from the desk of mymotionpicture as the change of seasons and the onset of spring in terms of real and reel casts its spells on the city of joy.. Echoing the laughter(s)!

My rating: 8.5/10

Hawa Badol – Expecting blooming friendship…

After a long while it feels great to occupy a cozy chair at one of those theaters in Kolkata and watch a Bengali feature film that will surely offer some food for thought. Oh! I forgot to mention that the second directorial venture of one of the most sensible cinematic professionals of Tollywood (Kolkata’s film industry popularly called As.), Parambrata Chatterjee’s “Hawa Badol” is set to hit the screens today (22nd March, 2013).

A story primarily speaking about bonds of friendship and childhood companionship have already been narrated so many times by so many film makers. However, this flick from ParamBrata is surely going to touch the hearts of care –free residents of this metropolitan city. The city bound hectic activities of a so called established expert and some unrecognized efforts of a creative guy super impose their truths and philosophies of life. They battle their differences and embrace their equalities to fabricate something that they longed for. What came in between then?

hawa-Badal

Hawa Badol, starring Rudranil Ghosh, Raima Sen, Neha Panda and the Director himself along with cameos from established actors from the industry will surely tickle your humor bones along with depicting some renewed crisis that the present generation faces every day. The bread and butter of this career centric generation do lack the time to stand and stare if I have to quote W.H.Davies, and apparently that differentiates success and happiness in the real world. The trailer of the movie along with the music tracks truly reminds me about some happier times and I hope the story does the same thing.

As far as the success of the Hawa Badol, the movie is concerned, I am personally very hopeful about the outcome of the movie. The best films produced last year had nothing in common apart from the fact that they had something innovative in them. Some stories that were never told or some known stories told in a way, like never before.

As I head towards the premier of the movie, I would like the audience to decipher this candid movie from the bottom of their heart that genuinely is a new generation flick celebrating friendship in an era of i-phones!

Signing off from the desk of mymotionpicture till I come back and rest a while after the intense Hawa Badol…

Kai Po Che – coated with friendship and soaked in Love!

kai-po-cheThe Jailer signed the release papers in the detention center and his friend was waiting to welcome him to the new but geriatric world of “innocent” people. A very veteran and common start for a movie from the makers of Rock-on! However, like me, most of the audience was not ready to judge the book by its cover.  Kai Po Che by director Abhishek Kapoor is a sensible entertainer contrasting the likes of Zila Gaziabad and mindless films like them. Based on Chetan Bhagat’s best-selling novel 3 Mistakes of my Life, the movie has evoked certain basic human traits which have actually appealed to a huge number of audiences, teenagers being predominantly huge in the track.

Kai_Po_Che-1Friendship, love and drama are some of the major Indian cinematic elements, which if missed will make the film a sure flop show! Verisimilitude was the catch line of the movie Kai Po Che. Raj Kumar Yadav, Sushant Singh Rajput and debutant Omkar Shastri played Govind, Ishan and Omi respectively. Three best friends, with very different perspective of life yet glued in the bond of friendship portrayed the unsaid essence of companionship. The film and the novel, both are characterised on a very Indian, rather Gujrati background which eventually let the audience connect to the theme of the reel very easily. The Bhuj earthquakes, Hindu-Muslim riots, death of Ishan, were some of the major cinematic turns which made the movie spicy.

Overall, everything is there in Kai Po Che that a bollywood-movie audience can expect. High credits go to the cast and crew whose

Introducing cricket in friendship...
Introducing cricket in friendship…

dedication and endeavor was very evident throughout the movie. The sweet and complete love story between student and the teacher must have been enjoyed by one and all. So do not let this semester go without watching Kai Po Che or else it would be just another mistake of your life! A relief from the general mindless movies produced in India! Hope our audiences stop yawning!!!

My Rating: 8/10.

– Reviewed by Shreya Goswami.

Pen-Guest Author @mymotionpicture.

 

How is a picture born?

rare picture of Michelangelo Antonioni
rare picture of Michelangelo Antonioni

A director is a man, therefore he has ideas;   He is also an artist, therefore he has imagination. Whether they are good or bad, it seems to me that I have an abundance of stories to tell. And the things I see, the things that happen to me, continually renew the supply…

On a second thought:

People often ask me, “How is a picture born?” A picture probably has its birth in the disorder within us, and that’s the difficulty: putting things in order…

Michelangelo Antonioni.

Read one more from Drew Barrymore.

 

Zila Gaziabad defines “Senseless Indian films”!

I come back to my signature topic, “senseless Indian films” once again after punishing my brain and mind with a so called motion picture named Zila Gaziabad! Believe me folks, I don’t care if I misspell the name of the director or the producer or anyone associated with the movie. Spending an odd 20-30 crore on a movie that is so poorly made is a sheer loss of resources in a country where people seek quality entertainment after their everyday challenges!

Poster of Zila Gaziabad
Poster of Zila Gaziabad

I don’t know what actually inspires this idiotic bunch of people and I don’t know what gives them enough courage to make something so shallow and demeaning in the name of a movie! I won’t discuss the plot, neither will I speak about what went wrong as there was nothing to describe apart from flashy south Indian action and some skinny item numbers in the movie!

“Commercial cinema” is the misused term that destroys all the efforts made by sincere directors and film makers of this country. The definition of commercial cinema is so badly depicted that the entire class of cinema is getting affected. The adverse effect of films like Zila Gaziabad can be witnessed on the box office readings as well. People will still have the courage of making another movie or a masala movie like this in the near future, I am sure! However, the story actually demanded a lot of drama and polished action sequences that took Gangs of Wasseypur to a different level. Let them call these movies as commercial ones, I will still call them as senseless Indian cinema! Read about the top five Hindi movies of 2012! Aren’t they commercial? Ask the happy producers!

Item numbers are such crowd pullers! (calculated Pun)
Item numbers are such crowd pullers! (calculated Pun)

I wonder how, the producer convinced actors like Sanjay Dutt, Arshad Warsi, Asutosh Rana to do a movie that has such a weak screenplay! A movie with almost no depth in its script and no storyline whatsoever! It is proved time and again that movies like this end up in the losing side. However, a muscle man (read Salman Khan) is still convincingly handsome in his heroic mannerisms and still minting gold out of these so called commercial movies! I don’t know if he is doing something good to the Indian economy, but I firmly believe that his movies and his way of portraying himself in the movies should be self-reviewed!

Is he amused? Or is there anything wrong with his reasoning capabilities? If a doctor reads this, please prescribe a pill for these poor fellows and I will wish them, “Get well soon”! (*grins)

The music, the direction, the casting, the dialogues, the cinematography, the story demands a null out of anything you wish to score this film on! Although, we can give a round of applause to the action director for creating those international moves on Indian silver screen, Period!

My Rating: 2/10.

Signing off from the desk of mymotionpicture as it collapses in laughter after experiencing something as hilarious as Tom and Jerry (read Zila Gaziabad). Waiting for its premier in POGO very soon! What is wrong with Indian Cinema?

Rejection in the Oscar Awards – Yawning audiences and Duping producers!

We watch movies in theatres and now we have multiplexes to cater our pride and beat the hectic city schedules. But, have we sold our logic and reason to some unknown sheriff from a distant land or are we relentlessly poised to receive whatever trash we are subjected to? The answer to the question seems rhetorical. India produces the most number of films on this planet. However, we are yet to get congratulated by the biggest academy award in films, the Oscars! Let’s ask ourselves. Why?

India’s first ever entry to the Oscar “Mother India” got the nomination in the category of best foreign film, but lost by just one vote. After that it was a long wait of 31 years as “Salaam Bombay” by Mira Nair made it to the list of the last five. Recently, India’s interest in the Oscars was re-ignited when “Lagaan” was nominated but lost to “No Man’s Land”. I said recently to be ironical enough!

It does seem the Academy tends to favour European films with France leading the foreign language film nominations with 34 in total and having bagged nine Oscars, and Italy following with 27 nominations and 10 wins. But the Oscar has also gone to movies with people from Arab, Far East and Slavic backgrounds. Indian films never seem to have fitted the Oscar bill. Satyajit Ray, whom the Academy conferred with the “Lifetime Achievement Award” on his deathbed, never bagged a film-specific award. His “Pather Panchali” won 11 international awards, but no Oscar.

When will India represent Oscars like the ones in Europe and America?
When will India represent Oscars like the ones in Europe and America?

Ironically, Vittorio De Sica, who won two Oscars for “Shoeshine” and “The Bicycle Thief”, had deeply impacted Ray’s work. Even last year’s Oscar-nominated Iranian director Majid Majidi is a self-confessed admirer of the legendary Ray. Besides Ray, many filmmakers and an endless number of films have missed a chance at the Oscars but have gone on to join the repertoire of the finest cinema of the world. They include Jean-Luc Godard and Francoise Truffaut, masters of the French New Wave, and others like Yasujiro Ozu, Michelangelo Antonioni, Mrinal Sen, Claude Chabrol, Alain Resnais, Kristov Zanussi, Robert Bresson and many more.

The other Indian to have won an Oscar is Bhanu Athaiya, well-known costume designer from Mumbai. She was jointly named for the best costume designing for Richard Attenborough’s multiple-Oscar winner “Gandhi” (1982). In 2005, filmmaker Ashvin Kumar’s “Little Terrorist” got nominated for the Academy Award in the Best Short Film category. And then in 2006, “Born into Brothels”, a documentary filmed in part by children of sex workers of Kolkata took home the golden statue.

With Indian studios churning out 1,000 films a year, it has the potential to be a film superpower. An Oscar will help in consolidating its power. But most experts say that India is simply not sending its best to the Academy. We still believe in films that make money in box office and we deprive that handful of quality motion pictures celebrating the bogus and senseless Indian films produced all round the year. Leaving a few alternate film makers who are recently making the headlines, the trend of Indian cinema never took the right decision of making and promoting better stories along with quality screenplay and splendid direction. Believe me, the jury members of the Oscar look for strong scripts with tight direction and not stories of ghosts, disabled people or a historic literature that fails to go up to the standards of Gladiator or Lord of the Rings! So, why don’t we send the right ones?

India's recent entry to the Oscars...
India’s recent entry to the Oscars…

I believe the financiers are skeptical  lest they lose this so-called commercial market and the chance of looting the audiences by showing senseless trash for a tedious 180 minutes! The answers are still resonating down your throat, come on and speak it up! India cannot be a country producing films with rain dances! We have a better appetite for movies and we will claim our rights very soon! Investigate!

Signing off from the desk of mymotionpicture, expecting disarray in the system of film-making in India…

How I perceived Calcutta 71 – A tribute to Mrinal Sen!

Beginning of an era! - Mrinal Sen in his early 20's.
Beginning of an era! – Mrinal Sen in his early 20’s.

A young man completes his degree in Physics from Scottish Church College, Calcutta and then becomes a journalist. Political backdrops and unseen personal clashes drive him out of the city and compel him to be a medical representative and medicine seller in an unknown land. He comes back to his city to take up a job of a sound technician in Calcutta and then the story begins. The journey through which Mr. Mrinal Sen took us, the film lovers of India, instigated and regularly echoed his struggles and frustrations about the fake and senseless culture of Indian cinema.

A still from the movie Mrigaya (1976)
A still from the movie Mrigaya (1976)
Sound - Camera- Action!
Sound – Camera- Action!

He believed in the art and realized its mass appeal. He wanted to tell stories in a different way. He tried to cause worries and also supplied means to tackle them. India has wasted many years after his efforts were fizzing off. He is 90 years old now and his dreams are still dreams in terms of implementation and honesty in the approach which beautified his films. The entire film fraternity saw three dominating film makers at that point as Satyajit Ray, Ritwik Ghatak and Mrinal Sen complemented each other with their strong story line and candid cinematography.

A still from a Mrinal Sen's film.
A still from a Mrinal Sen’s film.
A still from Khandahar.
A still from Khandahar.

I personally believe that a even simple story can reach the hearts and minds of the audience with sheer brilliance of effective story telling technique. Mrinal Sen colonized this idea and he had this in-born talent of insightful story telling. With technicians and machines that are obsolete and out of practice in the modern film industry, he made some of the best films that Indians ever experienced.

Mrinal Sen, disillusioned by the inflexible and unjust rules of the world and specially his country had the guts to comment on some of the most sensitive issues of the 60’s, 70, and 80’s. His films in the 90’s and one in 2002 also had a social commentary to ensure food for his thoughts. He was a rebel as far as film making is concerned. The film industry broke some of the traditional shackles as he introduced his formula of new age films.

As he watches the proceedings...
As he watches the proceedings…

Sen’s works were inspired by a lot of unseen people and associations. His love for theater and drama might be the primary cause for shifting his interest from physics to films. Similarly, his respect for the doctrines of Karl Marx made him direct the Kolkata trilogy in the early 70’s. Interview (1971), Calcutta 71 (1972) and Padatik (The Guerilla Fighter, 1973) speaks about romantic and idiosyncratic Bengalis who fought for civil independence in their own land. He depicted emotions of a large section of our society who are deprived every day.  The Naxalite movement was enclosed and celebrated with correct mindset and apt verbiage.

Poster
Poster
A still from Calcutta 71
A still from Calcutta 71

Humor was also an integral part of Mrinal Sen’s films and classy humor should be the term to define his witty depiction of scenes. He used visual metaphors and efficient ironical dialogues to establish his thoughts. He commented on a number of political events of that time and also displayed the pains and anguish of his hapless inmates due to the reckless and selfish political system of our country. From being a petty medical representative to be a film maker respected by the entire nation, Mrinal Sen’s journey witnessed 27 feature films, 14 short films and 5 documentaries.

My motion picture pays a humble tribute to Mrinal Sen for his lifetime achievements and efforts. He was a visionary who tried his best to reform the film industry, to enhance the creativity and film art, to negotiate unprofessionalism and establish honest intellectual approach towards films. His efforts didn’t go in vain but lacked proper support as sluggish film makers found means to promote their ideas about senseless cinemas and its profit quotients. The affluent educated society of the country still believes what Sen, Ray and Ghatak wanted to portray in their films, writings and interviews. However, the system has lost the zeal to implement new ideas.

Ghatak
Ghatak
Ray
Ray
Sen
Sen

The critics will be shouting and filthy business policies will be flourishing. Time goes by and Indian film industry including the regional film industries are still satisfied with box office returns. Film business schemes murders film art on a regular basis and deceive the illiterate common mass by showing rain scenes on the road, half-clad women in item numbers and sensual scenes of extra marital affairs.

As desperation and frustration creeps in my mind while I finish my reverence article for one of the pioneers of Real Indian movies, Mr. Mrinal Sen, someone tells me “Dabang 2” becomes a 100 crore member! (*sighs)

A note to his father saying, “I love you”!

A must watch video for all the fans and supporters of Anjan Dutt. For all of them who wish to know him better. For all of them who waits for his movies, songs or any other form of creative excellence… I will not say much about the movie and rather expect all of you to pour in and view this teaser of one of the best upcoming movies of this year!

My-motion-picture wishes the team of “Dutta vs. Dutta” all the luck.

Behind the scenes of “Dutta Vs. Dutta” – A YouTube video link.. (must watch!!!)

A special note of thanks to Mr. Anjan Dutt, as he was and he will be my inspiration for all my life. A word of wisdom is magnified, signified and well served when you say them, Sir!

Cast and Crew details:

o Ronodeep Basu,
o Anjan Dutt,
o Dipankar Dey,
o Rupa Ganguly,
o Arpita Chatterjee,
o Music Director: Neel Dutta
o Director and script writer: Anjan Dutta
Respect, Love and Regards for everything Sir! 🙂

Straight from my heart – Muddy E minor- (part-I)

Music has always been a mystical source of enlightenment and entertainment for a mind and soul that longs for realization. I feel music describes happiness of a heart and the sadness of a soul like no other form of art. It has the language that metaphorically connects to the soul of an individual and soothes the scars indented by this materialistic world.

Indian music has a number of layers that can hardly be argued on a mere blog page. The enormous and enriching resource of Indian music leaves me amazed every time I try to estimate its profundity. I am inclined to popular form of music. I prefer a form of music that promulgates hope for one and all, kind of music that speaks about life and its journey towards the ultimate truth. Indian folk music is one of those kinds.  My knowledge about the entire folk music culture of the country is limited and I humbly acknowledge that I know very little about their substantial growth and contribution to the Indian music. I would rather speak about the ‘Bauls’ of Bengal to assert a few philosophies about folk music of this region.

Baul Singer

The word ‘Baul’ came from a Sanskrit word ‘Vatula’ which means insanity or madness of the wind. These Bauls lives their life of renunciation from all the worldly desires and preach the message of love and God as they move around the world. They put heart and soul to their songs which have simple lyrics for one and all. Their music is very similar to sufi music as exemplified by Kabir.  They sing what they feel and their words along with their especially designed musical instruments and organs come together to provoke a tune as soulful as the first rain after the summers.

I shall key my thoughts and emotions about these musical magicians in mymotionpicture in three episodes. I would like to describe a few encounters with some of these Baul singers on the crossroads of my life. If you had a taste of their music, you know what I am talking about. If you haven’t, I must say that you are deprived of something so heavenly that their songs can explain.  I wish to present some of the immortal Baul songs created in this part of the world in the form of their popular versions recorded on electromagnetic medium in this section of my blog. I am doing a research on the evolution of Baul music in Bengal and its present position.

I expect to return in the second episode of “Straight from my heart – Muddy E minor” with some more facts and souls about these mysterious section of musicians who spend their entire life serving the art and perishing unnoticed on most of the occasions. I invite my readers to one of the famous Baul festivals that take place in Joydev Kenduli and experience the vibrant music and the captivating ambience.

'Ektara', 'Do-tara' and other string instruments including some flutes...

Till the time we unite again on this virtual world, I sign off leaving you with a documentary made by UNESCO on Bauls as a part of their Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity Project in the year 2008.

 

Development of authentic motion picture criticism in India…

A heading photo!!!

A section of the audience in every movie theatre prefers to appreciate the work of the film maker keeping the flavour of the film and the message conveyed by the film in mind. They can see through the scenes of the film and read between the lines written by the writer and as the movie comes to the climax, they develop a perception about the merit of the film.

How we see Indian cinema!

In India, criticism is hardly enjoyed, forget about appreciation. A critical appreciation of a film, music piece or any other piece of art always helps an artist to improvise his skills and diminish the unforced errors… However, constructive criticism in Indian films including the regional film industries was never encouraged. The result? A hell lot of poor quality films hitting the theatres every week and our taste for quality cinema is almost breathing its last breadths.

They ruled the Industry.

 What is Cinema for  you?

If you can answer this question without thinking, you will be able to evaluate the average quality of films made in India. A country where people die of starvation and kids hardly get the opportunity of primary education produces hundreds of films worth some billion shameful currencies! India never experienced a film movement like the ones in Europe. I feel that a mass movement was required to change the obsolete and paltry ideas. The entire conception of films, movies and cinema in Europe is different from what our so-called film makers think here in India. I am not speaking about the exceptions. We treat films to be a part of our entertainment. However, we hardly look for enrichment of ideas, thoughts and culture. We merely notice the art and the artist that took the pain to design that piece of entertainment. Film critics judge the success of a movie on the basis of its box-office collection. Had we read a few articles on European movies and their thoughts post world war-2, our notion about a “good film” would have been straighter and better. We the educated section of the audience are socially and economically responsible for this mass wastage of resources. We praise trash and we pay money to those people who make these trashes.

Crowds engrossed in watching a movie...

Our culture and studies are extremely limited when it comes to critical appreciation of a movie. We can easily understand that by comparing the standards of European movies in terms of its treatment. In India, film makers used to treat a story like a stage drama enacted in-front of a Camera. I know the statement give rise to a lot of other questions as well. However, if we start comparing the movies from an era of the late 50’s to today’s date, it is quite evident that European movies were far more advanced. We are the luckier generation as we get to know the views and perception of Indian film makers like Satyajit RayRitwik Ghatak, Shyam Benegal, Mrinal Sen, Girish Kasaravalli and some others. Their works were screened in various international film festivals. They had the taste of ‘real cinema’ and also were a part of the ‘film movement’, I was speaking about. Not with the European style but their works depicted the ideas and the culture of Italian Neorealist film movement, Russian futurist movement in visual art, French Impressionist Cinema, Soviet Parallel cinema and German expressionism. They practiced their form of art in Indian cinema abiding by the philosophies and views asserted by the leaders of these movements. These people tried to explain the various shades of cinema. Indian Film Education has started to see through their ideas and statements as far as film theories and film aesthetics are concerned. Indian film movements never shifted gears and lost their goals in between seasonal turmoils in the social, political and economic scenario of our so-called independent nation.

Two film critics in an auditorium in Europe. an old picture!

If we take the courage to look what’s happening beyond the seas, in the western countries, you will sadly realize that India’s contribution to this form of art is handsomely negligible! So, are we still nagging with our rich cultural heritage designed before centuries, or, are we ready to make a significant move to ensure that the people in the generations to come acknowledge this effort with a warm ovation. However, we are still waving the flag for commercial movies high up in the sky and getting entertained with what we call a package of happiness in the weekend.

Can’t we change our views and tastes for the betterment of this form of art? Can’t we stop producers who make mindless movies and name that entertainment? The answers are still pending. Revolution has various ends and edges. I stand by class of ideas and true culture which gives us the hope of progressive life in every sense.

A mymotionpicture presentation!