Lights, Camera, Conversation… “A normal boy who does stupid things…”

Thoughts on ‘Njan Steve Lopez’, and the problem with email interviews. Slowly, surely, Rajeev Ravi, known to most people as “Anurag Kashyap’s cinematographer,” is creating an identity for himself as a filmmaker. His superb first film, Annayum Rasoolum (“Anna and Rasool”), was about a young man who falls in love. The girl rebuffs him at […]

Lights, Camera, Conversation… “Goliaths and Davids – 2”

On “Jigarthanda.” On the current state of Tamil cinema. On criticism, and why it’s important to not just praise a film because it’s… “different.” Last week, I wrote about how the very existence of a film like Jigarthanda in the current Tamil-cinema climate is a miracle – but while we should celebrate films like Jigarthanda, […]

Lights, Camera, Conversation… “Goliaths and Davids”

On “Jigarthanda.” On the current state of Tamil cinema. On criticism, and why it’s important to not just praise a film because it’s… “different.” Sometime last month, in the sify.com coverage of an interaction that had something to do with the teaser of the Suriya film Anjaan, the star was thus quoted: “Expectation about every […]

Lights, Camera, Conversation… “The genre and the specific”

“Gay movie.” “AIDS movie.” “Chick flick.” Thoughts on the informal tags we slap on films… By the time you read this, the Chennai International Queer Film Festival (or to call it by its proper name, Reel Desires: Chennai International Queer Film Festival) will be on its last day. And if things go according to plan, […]

Lights, Camera, Conversation… “Coming attractions”

Thoughts on trailers in general and the ‘Gone Girl’ trailer in particular. I cannot wait to see Gone Girl. For one, it’s directed by David Fincher – that makes it an automatic must-see. Two, I’ve read the book, and its halfway twist is easily one of the best acts of rug-pulling I’ve encountered. It’s genius. […]

Lights, Camera, Conversation… “Pros and cons”

Why is Hollywood crap so much more watchable than the crap we make? The answer: professionalism. About the time the first Transformers movie was released, if you’d asked me what I thought of Optimus Prime, I’d have thought you were referring to a mathematical variable. A few movies in, I was slightly more clued in. […]

Lights, Camera, Conversation… “Four decades later, a flashback”

Singeetam Srinivasa Rao remembers ‘Dikkatra Parvathi’, his first film in Tamil, based on Rajaji’s story. Singeetam Srinivasa Rao’s first film was in Telugu, a 1972 comedy named Neeti Nijayiti. It flopped. For his second film, he wanted to do something different. “At that time, there was this big art-cinema movement,” he told me last week. […]