Wednesday, March 31, 2010

lost post

One day Comrade (oops) N. received the following email in his inbox. I had a plan of posting it here on my blog. Not sure what happened to the plan, but applying the rule of better late than never, I present to you now ... more "self chauvinism" (exaggerated).
... Even if it be not so, here are two movie recommendations, one short and other even shorter, for we are all hard pressed to succeed and supersede with little time for digressions that benefits us.

Both are available in youtube, so please accept my thanks to Google on behalf of the have-nots. If you have already watched any of these, I am shocked that you never told me about them!

One is Renoir's "The river" (not so sure about the article). This is a simple movie, yet very very complex if you choose to dive, it is about India (and as the auteur said "about India without tigers or elephants") yet it could be about any riverbank locality, it is about three silly girls' coming of age yet it could be about how human beings deal with expectation, loss and unwanted turns in life. But all the while I was watching it, I had one of my (not oft-noticed) pleasant smiling expression on my face - because the movie was just beautiful, simply beautiful ... it is hard to describe when something which is simple and beautiful. The emotion was far from realism, there was an attempt to tell a story; tell a story like one's mom or grandmom or some old person tells a story, pausing when needed, with utmost care to ensure the kid is enjoying the story and creating a sweet-loving caring atmos. It does not remain just the story or the person or the candies that are stacked on the side ... everything blends and you just have a wonderful time. When the story ends, well... it ends. The feeling stays for a while and even water tastes better for the next half hour. As you can imagine, this was clearly a director's movie - the editing was superb, the colours ... amazing and the movie never gave me a chance to notice how the players were acting. As long as the movie was in motion, I was concerned about the characters as I would do in a dream where I never even think of figuring out who is behind the mask.

The shorter one is "The great train robbery" (1903 version). It was a notable first, you can read up all of that. Its a 10 min movie, about <15 shots. Each shot is beautiful ... each shot is shot with a static camera (panning only in two shots) and every shot could be printed on a 11x14 canvas and it would make a fascinating photograph. The contrast and the composition is of the highest quality. The other
great thing about the movie is that it tells a very simple tale, for someone in 2009, yet at about 3 mins in the movie, which is when I thought of noticing the time, I felt that the movie has been going on for quite a while. People talk about compact, solid lectures; here is a compact solid movie. It is surprising that you could show so much without moving the camera, without sophisticated acting, without a
complicated storyline just by thoughtful direction. I had to see to believe it.

Written in June, 2009. Posted in 2010.

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