Sunday, 19 August 2012

The Men Behind The Chaos

A film is not comprised of only a select few people, it is always a joint venture. There is always a ateam who come together and workout how the film will hsape. In this team the directeor is the leader, it's his baby but there other aspects to the film other than just direction. These aspects even though are very crucial to the film, are often forgotten or down right taken for granted by the public. Nobody comes out of the theater saying how beautiful the film looked, with bright colors or dark atmosphere, this compliment is rarely heard even from established critics. This is because of negligence, in our industry all that glitters is gold. People who make the film are always secondary while the people who star in it are primary. This point is very evident in the recent passing from one of India's finest cinematographers Mr. Ashok Mehta.

Quite few people other than the people in the industry are aware of how brilliant this man is. His work mainly consisted of standing behind the camera dictating the look and feel of the film. This is the very first tone that sets the mood for any film, thus is the most important aspect when it comes to presentation of the film. But this like many other technical field is heavily ignored once the film is released, they don't even get a proper mention at award ceremonies. Always the filler awards are such awards which deal with the technical aspects of the film. This raises a concern over the lack of interest the film industry itself has in it's own life support system. These people are so crucial to a film that they have the ability to make or break the film.

For instance look at the way the cinematography of the film Kaminey. This film relies heavily on this fatcor for the basic reason that it sets the tone for the ongoings of the screen. Good and/or bad can just be felt by looking at the color composition of the shot. This is the kind of emotions that can be stirred by a simple color change. Tassaduq Hussain has done a fantastic job as the cinematographer and has really set the bar high for such off-commercial films and peculiar style of story telling. Like cinematographers there are other people deeply involved in the film but always ignored. The top among them being the editors.

Editors are the directors best friend they are the ones who patch up the film and decide how the film flows in reality. It is the extension of the director's vision and the skill of the editor that determine the final draft of the film. Editing can do wonders in escalating a moment in the film. Good edits with great synchronized background score are the crucial point that help the film achieve a status which can take the audience in a trance. Be it funny, drama, romance or action all emotions need that perfect edit or that moment is lost. The best editing that I say recently was for the film Rang De basanti which had P.Bharthi  as the editor. Brilliant editing with subtle and jump edits both edits used perfectly to create a cinematic moment.

Like editors the cameramen, the sound technicians, the make up artists, the background score, the writers, the dialogue writers, the screenplay writers are all ignored dimensions of a film. Hardly anyone acknowledges or appreciates them for a fine job they do. A film can never be complete without the expertise of such talent and these people are always on the back burner because the most important aspect is always the star in the film. I feel there should be awareness that a film not only works because the actors or the director but also because these people have given their best to it.

The point importantly, here is, that these aspects of a film are also an art form, I don't wish to undermine the actors but these technicians don't hold any less regard in my eyes. In accordance, I wish more respect be given by the industry itself to these technicians so that the general public learn from them and at least acknowledge and give credit to the people who deserve it. Hat's Off to you for being the people who stand behind the film even when nobody stands behind you.

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