The question of race permeates every pore of Rainer Werner Fassbinder’s magnificent German melodrama, ‘Ali: Fear Eats the Soul’

June 6, 2020

0

The older generation will slowly pass on and equality will (hopefully) simply be something we take for granted, not something to be “grappled with”. But then, Twitter and Whatsapp tell us otherwise. An inter-racial romance seems apt to talk about in these #GeorgeFloyd times, especially when race colours every aspect of the “romance” in question. […]

250k subscribers

June 5, 2020

5

250k subscribers for Film Companion South. A big deal for a small team. Thank you SO much. Copyright ©2020 Film Companion.

Indiaglitz interviews me…

June 5, 2020

6

For more, subscribe to FILM COMPANION SOUTH: http://bit.ly/2xoNult Copyright ©2020 Indiaglitz.

Basu Chatterji’s gentle, middle-of-the-road cinema was that of the people next door

June 4, 2020

6

The director’s films could be called “simple”. But they were about complicated — or at least, not-so-simple — people. And oh, some of the songs! Sara Akash opens with the legendary KK Mahajan’s camera in constant motion. It’s either whipping past walls (as if mounted on a car) or, more slowly, receding from people on […]

Posted in: Cinema: Hindi

The Cannes 2020 lineup is here, and Wes Anderson is the sole“star director”

June 4, 2020

3

High-profile directors matter at film festivals, because here, they are the real stars. Because they have oeuvres we already know, and the excitement is about ‘what next’! The first foreign film I watched on a big screen — that is, apart from  the rare ones Doordarshan used to screen at night — is Federico Fellini’s […]

Readers Write In #199: Mysskin and Kamal Haasan walk into a bar…

June 4, 2020

4

(by Marsant Gerephio) After running out of topics to discuss (trying everything from becoming Dalgona connoisseurs to Experts on Quantum Mechanics) we finally decided to hit on cinema and committed the blasphemy of recommending movies to one another! It’s endlessly perplexing to me how people project their likings, tastes, preferences onto others and think they’ll […]

Ilaiyaraaja and Mani Ratnam: On their shared birthday, ten songs from their ten films

June 2, 2020

10

Here are the top numbers from each film, where they both leave their respective marks: in other words, song sequences that stand out because of the music as well as the staging. Is the Ilaiyaraaja-Mani Ratnam combination the greatest among all the other directors the great composer has made great music for? I’m not sure. […]

Santosh Sivan’s Masterclass, Journey Of Light: On Thuppakki, Iruvar, Dil Se, Roja

June 1, 2020

1

Ten takeaways from Canon India Digital’s webinar, where the cinematographer and filmmaker took questions and explained his art, his philosophy. 1. As a child, you remember photographs. In my case, it was a very scary photograph — a black-and-white picture in my ancestral home in Kerala. These structures are generally dark, with a shaft of […]

Readers Write In #198: Will the Snyder… Cut?

May 30, 2020

13

(by KayKay) So…I was recently watching Gautham Menon’s follow up to the lovely and bittersweet Vinnaithaandi Varuvaaya on YouTube and it reminded me about Zack Snyder’s Justice League. Wait, wait, you say. What does a short film sequel to a Tamil movie released in 2010 have to do with an infamously mishandled 2017 Hollywood Tentpole […]

Readers Write In #197: Vishal-Shekhar & Siddharth Anand – A combination that doesn’t get talked about much

May 30, 2020

6

(by Raghav Ravichandran) For somebody like me whose understanding of Hindi and generally the foray into Bollywood music happened in the early 2000’s there is one music composer duo, Vishal-Shekhar who have played a significant role in ensuring I became a big admirer of Bollywood Music and started following almost each Hindi album especially from […]

Readers Write In #196: Cinephilic Meltdown: Peeping Tom

May 30, 2020

4

(by Anand Sudha) https://contentiouscriticism.wordpress.com/ It’s strange how a film devoid of blood-splattered gore and pornographic cheap thrills evoked so much moral condemnation upon release, a reaction all the more surprising since the film came on the heels of Hitchcock’s Psycho, which was arguably more graphic and shocking. Even the subsequent films from that decade, with […]

Ponmagal Vandhal, with Jyotika, is on Amazon Prime: This courtroom drama needed to be much darker, but it’s content to remain “family-friendly”

May 29, 2020

21

The director doesn’t trust his material. He doesn’t trust the audience enough to feel that this “issue” is enough, and doesn’t need to be cheaply sensationalised. Spoilers ahead… J J Fredrick’s Ponmagal Vandhal opens beautifully. We are in a forest in Lovedale — a misty picture that could be on a tourist brochure. And then, […]

Interview: Alphonse Puthren (5 years of Premam)

May 28, 2020

3

For more, subscribe to FILM COMPANION SOUTH: http://bit.ly/2xoNult Copyright ©2020 Film Companion.

The late Michel Piccoli in the role of his lifetime, as an artist in Jacques Rivette’s ‘La Belle Noiseuse’

May 28, 2020

3

It’s not about the product. It’s about the process. If you romanticise art, this film is a kid-in-a-candy store experience. The French actor Michel Piccoli died on May 12, and when I looked at his filmography — filled with great works like Godard’s Contempt and Buñuel’s Belle de Jour — one film stood out. It’s […]

Readers Write In #195: My journey to Indian cinema and this blog

May 26, 2020

23

(by Hakimo Brahim Belaout) If you happen to mention something about Indian cinema while you are in Algeria the most obvious response would be ” Janitou “. A term that literally has no meaning is actually a mispronounced and wrongly written abbreviation of “ Jaane Tu “. If you demand a clearer hint or explication […]

Readers Write In #194: Devdas, Melancholia, and the City.

May 25, 2020

6

(by Sagar Tetali) Why Devdas’ depression is about more than just Parvati, and why it is political. Indian cinema returns to Devdas every few years, ostensibly, due to the diktats of commerce—a successful formula—but also, it seems, as a way of understanding his predicament, like someone telling and retelling a story, remembering details and attempting […]

Readers Write In #193: The Boy Who Continues To Live

May 25, 2020

40

(by Abishek Balaji) Revisiting the pop culture phenomenon of our generation Corona virus made me do, as RandeepHooda said, the one thing I thought I’d never do – clean my room. While navigating through mountains of clothes,gadgets,question papers and books, I had a near-Imtiaz Ali moment- I made shelf discovery. In it was 4 of […]

Readers Write In #192: Why did you dial her, Karthik?

May 25, 2020

1

(by Harish S Ram) It all starts with Karthik struggling with writer’s block. As his mind longs for Jessi’s presence, his hand dials her number, hoping she would bring him out of this abyss. What should have followed is an epilogue to the original film or a prelude to a sequel. However, what I saw […]

Readers Write In #191: ‘Tamasha’ – It’s always the same story, yet it is a story like no other

May 25, 2020

11

(by Sai Krishna Ramavajula) I was following the teaser, trailer, andthe songs of ‘Tamasha’ before the release of the movie. It is an Imtiaz Ali movie, it has Ranbir Kapoor and Deepika Padukone. There is A.R. Rahman’s music, Irshad Kamil’s lyrics, and Mohit Chauhan’s vocals. There is Ravi Varman’s beautiful cinematography as seen before in […]

Readers Write In #190: On the spirit of Rangeela/Bombay…

May 25, 2020

11

(by Aneesh J) That free-flowing spirit of Aamir aided with Ramu’s love/lust for the Bombay film industry& Amitabh… Hardly has any-body been able to capture the spirit of the Bombay film industry likeSai Paranjapein the ‘80s and then, Ramu in the ‘90s. Ramu’s ‘Rangeela’ especially stood out to me; since in December 2019, I visited […]