Monday, October 25, 2010

kicking magic out in the name of logic

This film has been suitably modified for family viewing - How I hate these words! I always feel cheated when a movie has been tampered with by a group of do gooders who have no artistic qualification, but have been given the authority to tamper with someone's creativity. Who watches movies with families these days? I wonder!
This mangling and taking away the essence of a movie was evident when one of our English channels telecast ,"The ugly truth" . I still remember watching the movie the first time on a dvd and laughing spontaneously all through it, even when I thought that the protagonist was a sick character spouting cynical gibberish and that some of the scenes were obscene.In the tv version of the film, several scenes were cut and the story became confusing, but what was unbelievable was that the elevator scene, where the lead characters discover their attraction for each other,was cut, making the story look lame.
Indians always believe that their artistic roots are religious and either adopt them with feverish seriousness or mock at the same as humbug. But most Indian traditional practises are not impractically spiritual. An example that I can give are the 'varnams' or simple compositions in carnatic music, which help the student learn the various ragas. As a student of music, I used to translate these varnams, usually in telugu and used to find them flirtatious. For instance the first lines of the bhairavi varnam may roughly be translated as follows," The female with dark hair is in love with you" The first lines of all varnams translate into lamentations of love.The music teachers of the past who framed such a syllabus were clearly aware that this theme would go well with young learners. They were of course careful in placing the name of a deity at the end of each paragraph, implying the the object of love was the lord himself. The stanzas usually ended as they do in the bhairavi varnam, with Sri Rajagopala deva! or Sri Venkatesa!
There have been several instances when modern artists and film makers have been seen as threats to Indian culture and its conservatism. This creates an image that all Indians are extra spiritual and are unbelievable kind and trustworthy. We, on the other hand know that we are as normal as they come and should do our best not to hide behind stereotypes assigned to us.


BALA said...

I am in most agreement with your article. I do not know the criteria behind the censorship confinement. In the past Doordarshan showed such films every Friday as late night shows. Even then the censorship was very widely used. If the authorities consider them bad, then why they telecast them primarily.

Kishore said...

Hmm..Happened to watch Angels and Demons in TV, i cudnt even understand the movie, suddenly several scenes got cut and moved further..
If they are doin it in a movie, shdnt they do it for reality shows and tele serials?