Wednesday, January 13, 2010

A cinematic experience

A Cinematic experience

I have always been an ardent movie enthusiast. Somehow the three hours-give or take a few moments- I spend at a theatre have always kept me involved and at times offered useful insights and opportunities for reflection. But recently, I chose to take a step aside and find out what makes watching a movie, specially at a conventional single screen theatre such a wholesome experience.
For me it starts off with scanning the newspapers for the "ideal" movie-one I can safely watch and come back alive to tell the story; one I can suggest and live safely after people pay heed to my suggestion.
The excitement associated with arriving at the theatre to get the tickets is quite a phenomenon in itself. The uncertainty,the bustling and jostling in the queue to get to the counter,the occassional guy who bypasses the queue are all inevitable,integral parts of a complete movie experience. The feather on the cap is when you manage to get those priceless pieces of paper in your hand (black/white, balcony/second class-but who cares......???!!!!).Pity,online booking for multiplexes and the overwhelming transparency to an extent eliminates this excitement. If tickets are booked, we wont even bother to try. Let me add that if you do manage to get the tickets and save the day for many of those mortals at your mercy, you are a bigger hero than the one on screen!!!
Once the movie starts, each of us enter a world of our own. While you might connect with the protagonist, your friend may favour the antagonist. A person like me would be a side actor trying to figure out where the world is going to end. Occasionally the real world tries to mask the ever enthralling reel-world, what with an over enthusiastic fan trying to yell out to his hero/heroine- not to forget the idol worship with the coconut offerings that are done if the hero is a favourite son of the land( I am sorry, but your multiplex crowd is way too decent for this!). Also the rare disturbance that could occur with the audio-visual systems or projectors.The crowd is jerked from its reverie, for a moment or two- and amazingly slumps back once things are normal again.( Again your multiplexes are way too perfect for this).
But the core experience of movie watching remains the same in both cases. Once the lights dim and the emotions unfold its just adrenaline (and the rest) that takes over. Most of the on screen stuff is a treat to the senses- a break from the usual monotony. Some of it is food for thought. And a portion of it-however small, is more than a little toxic. Be wary of it. However the fact that watching a movie relieves us from the burdens of our life and makes us forget our routine for a while is more than a reason to indulge. More often than not, a small part of a film mirrors our life and we identify ourselves with the characters. If we are lucky enough, the film could be a solution to a persistent problem. It could be powerful motivation. It could be mere entertainment or pure enlightenment.
And depending on what your previous movie experience was you get what you deserve..........rewards or brickbats!!!