3/21/10

DOGME-95: BOLLY ISHTYLE!!


Danish directors Lars von Trier and Thomas Vinterberg signed the Dogme-95 manifesto and the “Vow of Chastity” to give birth to an avant-garde filmmaking style called Dogme-95. This style became immensely popular mostly because it was easy for the youth to just pick up a handy cam and start shooting, no background score, special lighting or optical filters not allowed; in short, a completely documentary feel to the cinema. Dibakar Banerjee’s Love Sex aur Dhoka, though not purely a Dogme-95 film, is a fantastic Bollywood tribute to this movement. An earlier Indian tribute to this movement though was Boman Irani’s debut film, Let’s Talk by Ram Madhvani.

The word experiment has truly changed as far as our film industry is concerned. In the 80s, if the superstar changed his hairstyle and sported an unshaven look, that would be called an experiment. In recent times probably a film without songs or with no big superstar in it would be termed as an experiment. But what will you call a film shot completely with security cams, hand digital cameras and spy cams…a film without any sort of background score…and of course with actors who were never seen before…they look one among us…is experiment too small a word for such a film? Probably yes…
And what shocked me the most is that the person who funded this risk is the queen of stereotypes, Ekta Kapoor; who has made tonnes of primetime TV shows which look the same and end up having the same story at some point or the other. The numerous sins she has committed (Kyunki , Kasauti, Kahaani, K this K that…), would certainly wash away to a great extent with this master stroke film she has put her interest and more importantly, money, into.

Love Sex aur Dhoka, wins not only because of its unconventional camera work, but more because of its superb editing, effortless acting and an awesome script. The film touches a lot of aspects of human life and its close association with the camera and how different is the world when seen from this device which can bring happiness to one’s life (capturing beautiful moments), can be the cause for unprecedented sorrow (MMS scandals), and finally, can be the thing which bails the person out of his state of sorrow and gives him revenge (sting operations).
I hope LSD triggers a movement amongst upcoming Indian directors, not necessarily to join the Dogme-95 movement, but at least to dare to experiment and experiment big. An industry where Karan Johar has taken a U-turn from brain dead family sagas to Forrest Gumpian films with a bigger message, Abhay Deol has conceptualized a Devdas who watches porn and where the independent cinema movement is on a high(Read:”Indies in India”, March 11), Bollywood seems to be the place where new minds are no more restricted from experimenting. Inshallah let this be the dawn of an ‘Indian New Wave’ where young minds with young ideas, break inhibitions, write something innovative, pick up a handy cam and just film it! Hmm…I like the smell of this…..

7 comments:

  1. soaham man...!!! too gud...!!!

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  2. thank you henna dear...keep coming to Q4C...

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  3. Haven't seen LSD. But your review makes me reconsider watching it. Keep them coming.

    Giri

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  4. nice to hear that....do surely watch it.

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  5. Hi, I landed up on this blog through your comment on my blog! Thanks for your comment. Here is one from me:
    You have one of the most interesting contents I have ever come across. It's great to know about movies and their reviews from you. I have had enough of commercial movies in my life and now i want to watch different genre of movies altogether...something eccentric. I recently liked Eyes Wide Shut (1999), Before Sunrise, Before Sunset and Vicky Cristina Barcelona is an all-time favorite. Not much into bollywood movies, Dev.D was a masterpiece though.

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  6. I am documentary filmmaker based in Delhi. After my Pune film school training some 20 years ago, i had decidedly moved to Delhi, away from Bollywood to make documentaries. I must say this was one decision I never regretted.
    The point is there is no point constructing bourgeois fairy-tales with special effects, good 35mm camera and sound and greater budgets. But with lousy stories. So what is cinema for - this kind of over-indulgence by some mother-f@@#ers. Or is it a people's medium to tell wonderful and interesting stories as we see and hear them around us. If it is he latter for you as it is for me, then have no fear to pick up a camera and just shoot. Maybe ask an elder bro like my myself to come and shoot and edit such a film-story for you. Bcause my friends it is great story-telling which is on premium, not a model of a camera or a film format or the style of shooting. If this is Dogme, so be it. If not, let's make our own Dogme. BUT FOR THAT you have to first make that different film story.

    All best.

    Survive to tell the best story or go die!

    Sudheer G.

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  7. @sudheer - thanks for all of it. anything ever required we will contact you. :)

    @avanika- thank you. keep visiting Q4C

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