Posted in #SriScribbles, Movies and Experiences, Society

War and Madness

Art always has been an opener for lots of discussions and evolution. Art has come a long way from being signs and symbols in caves to the multi billion budgeted CGI enforced movies. But, time and again it has been proved that just the cost put into the making can never be the factor to make the creation a memorable one. Movies, books, paintings and music are one or the other way the reason for a continuous relay into the evolution of thought process.

 

It’s been very long since I have wrote on movies, in fact it has been long since I last watched them. This write up is about the inferences that grew over me while watching two movies at different times but of similar intensity. These two movies were released in the same year of 1998, both being critically acclaimed for the aesthetics and near real representation. Though, both of them have been criticised for using the creative liberty to fabricate real instances. Both set in the days of World war II, provides an insight into the psychological aspects of soldiers in war (At the least, it did for me!). Let me try put these movies and their impact on me in the order that I watched them.,

 

“Saving Private Ryan” directed by Steven Spielberg and written by Robert Rodat, is a war drama film set on the Normandy invasions at Omaha beach by the American forces against the Germans during world war II. The story line starts with American soldiers dropped at the shores of Omaha by Naval vessels. The next twenty minutes of the movie showcases the cruelty of war right in front of our own eyes. The nervousness building within individuals, the sea sickness, the welcome array of bullets that leave the whole set up into a chaos, soldiers searching for lost parts of the body leaves a shocking impression for quite sometime. This sequence of war being an introduction to the madness of world war, the story sets off with the search for a private whose four brothers are found to be dead in action and the mission to return him back to America . The search and rescue mission by an ensemble company of soldiers and their experiences form the rest of the story. The variety of emotions that flow throughout their mission ranging from fear, pain, confusion, humanity, helplessness and sorrow provides a walk through the minds of soldiers at war. Though, the movie has a mild war heroism attached to it, every death and the helplessness attached to it very well portrays the brutality of war that unleashes on soldiers who end up on the battle field owing to the diplomatic stands of political delegates. The movie is filled with little detailing of the hard felt emotions of people at war including the sequence of a father trying to save his child by letting her go away from him, the individual confrontation between soldiers and the pain of desperately wanting to be back home.

 

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“The Thin Red Line” directed by Terrence Malick based on semi fictionalised novel by James Jones. Set in the backdrops of same world war II, but on Battle of Mount Austen in the pacific between American allied forces and the Japanese empire. This is a movie that provides more psychological perception over war. The heavy use of voice overs and the travel back and forth between the most cherished memories of individuals to the madness of war provides a strange feel of guilt in the gut. The change of behaviour of peace loving people of the Solomon Islands before and after the commencement of war, the thirst for power that drives people crazy enough to let soldiers starve to death, the psychic state of settling up to nothing but conquering, the physical and psychological imprints that are created during the war and more. The Thin Red Line looks to draws a less heroic stance on war and its implication on mankind, at the least on the soldiers. This movie goes through various thought process that are involved in the chaos of war.

 

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Though these movies can be easily marked as action packed war movies, one can never pass through these without pausing for a brief moment to cohere to the arrogance and madness that have been taught as heroism and patriotism for ages, killing thousands and thousands of soldiers, civilians alike. The read through emotions of each individual characters of movies of these kind, will provide a space for thought that shall never go along with the concept of war in the presence of slightest of common sense and empathy.

 

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Relating the portrayal of wars in these movies to the ones that has happened post the world war times, for the mad race of power, international business, exhibition of ethnic, linguistic and religious supremacy chokes us out of words and emotions altogether. Adding to these lie the worship of war mongering in the name of patriotism, which turns out to be nothing but a hyper active psychopathic state expecting the downfall of one over the other for no reason other than being born accidentally under various ethnic, linguistic and racial groups in accordance to the geography.

 

Overall the achievements of wars will remain to be only broken toys and dreams of an ordinary human, nothing more.

 

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Posted in #SriScribbles, Movies and Experiences

Movies and Experiences – II

There are always instances in life where we encounter things of similar essence in our life at various junctures. May we call it theory of relativity which states that each and everything is connected by some ways or simply a Deja Vu attack. This stays true in lot of cases including places, people one visits, food one eats, Movies one watch, books one read and songs one hear.

Movies have a similar interesting pattern that exhibits coherence of thoughts across geography and across different people’s thoughts. (Keeping aside deliberate remakes and copies!). And most interestingly there are virtues that are more common to people across the globe. Two movies that I watched in the recent time stands testimony to that. One being an Academy award winning American drama film “Amadeus”(1984) by Milos Forman written by Peter Shaffer and the other a Malayalam drama movie “Artist” (2013) by Shyamaprasad.

 

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Amadeus, is a fictionalized version of the renowned composer Wolfgang Amdeus Mozart’s biography. The movie has a great share talent, emotions and ofcourse music. The movie is a confession by Amadeus’s then rival Antony Salieri (F.Murray Abraham) during the feeble end of his life. The plot travels along starting from the childhood of two individuals who are intended to be musicians., one by nature and the other by desire.Emotional safari between Salieri as a dedicated musician who works hard and desires to be the greatest musician in the world against Mozart (Tom Hulce), an in born careless talent forms the core of the movie.The plot very much brushes various levels of emotions like talent,love, friendship, ego, frustration and hatred. The movie very much puts forth cruelty that is invoked due to ego. The movie also pours light on talent that drives people to be more self centric and the strain ,stress that builds over it. The movie has both ends to it, with ego as an extreme of frustration and self-centric as an extreme of being proud one’s talent. The emotional trauma that sets within Amadeus, Antony and the people around them just because of an invisible friction between the two leads to a roller coaster ride of emotions. The movie takes to higher strings of tensions with the commencement of climax, where in Mozart is asked to write a Requiem(Symphony performed for death) by a mysterious masked man. The movie ends on a note were both the extreme of emotions crashing down to nothing but a mirage. The movie in lot of ways guides as through things that definitely should not be and on what emotions uncontrolled can do to a people.

 

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Artist, a similar setup but with a difference of emotional tug of war of talent, ego, and emotional relationships. Artist is a story of two individuals who meet in college, share good rapport, build a liking for each other, move in together and the emotional ride over building a relationship amidst ego and frustrations. Michael (Fahad Fazil) and Gayathri (Ann Augustine) are two promising art students with conflicting backgrounds have fit to the role like no one ever could. Michael, a in born genius in art from a well to do family and Gayathri, a emotionally bound passionate girl from a conservative family forms a perfect opposite poles to drive the plot.The story revolves around the struggle that takes course with each instance where Gayathri puts passion for Michael before her career and Michael places his self centered thoughts over the relationship. The movie makes one feel peaks of emotions in ego, passion and frustration that comes hand in hand with talent and any relationship. The build up to the climax pulsates through us with one emotion getting the better of the other in consecutive scenes. The art series “Prussian blue” and the scenes that sums up to it, virtually provides a wave of emotions and rushes us with full of empathy. The movie as with Amadeus ends with emotions crashing down with a silent force and makes one go silent for seconds atleast.

These movies in lot of ways prove that how hard and lasting impact can an emotion leave. It is always interesting and strange on the part of overwhelming emotions that bring a totally new person out of a man/woman. Movies like these though are simple leave lasting impact as like the emotions that they handle.

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Posted in #SriScribbles, Movies and Experiences

Movies and Experiences – 1

 

It is good to experience new things. Every little experience adds to the value of thoughts that one holds. There are always different ways of earning those experiences and adding value to life. No matter whether we do something or not, it just adds up.As a generation which is always in a hurry, we always tend to expect more to life in a frame of time that doesn’t even qualify. Out of all those different ways of earning experiences, three fascinating ways of getting variety of experience are travel, books and movies.

Travel, Books, Movies hand over different ways of engaging and indulging people in their own right.Out of the three, Movies atleast for the present day has become the most accessible way of getting to know about things that are far off. Movies have also become sources of reflections of one’s own life, thus asserting the point that one isn’t alone in the world.Access to movies of different languages have had an extended effect on these. The same applies to both books and travel experiences with a varied flavor. It has been a wish to share on movies and books that I travel along with, irrespective of how old they are.It feels more refreshing to talk/share about those as well. This is my experience with movies than review.. Among those are the two movies that I watched in the recent times. One being the award winning Iranian movie “About Elly” (’09) by Asghar Farhadi and the other,an American drama movie “What’s eating Gilbert Grape” (1993) by Lasse Hallstrom. Both fascinating movies on their own way.

 

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About Elly, gives us an whole new arena of thriller movie experience. About Elly revolves around a lady Elly, who travels along with a group of friends in Iran for a short vacation at the shores of Caspian sea. The movie moves as swift as possible and gradually picks up pace and emotions.The cultural and emotional detailing that builds the movie provides one with a new experience on family and societal structure of Iran. Several events in the movie very much reflects the real life problems and stress that one could have as a person in a family and the society. In a space of cinema’s taken over by glamour and high blood action thrillers., About Elly is an experience of emotional trauma that is part of any common people (Especially women in our society!?). The second half of the movie very much strikes the chord of anxiety and uncertainty that one feels until a situation is sorted out in the real time. About Elly is a sure experience to take by, for anyone who loves movies that are more into real people, societal life and movies that provide a feel of a far off country but with the same essence of life.

 

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On the other end, What’s Eating Gilbert Grape was one movie that I wished to watch from the day I learnt that the movie stars Johnny Depp and Leonardo Dicaprio (Both being very good with the role, and watch out for Dicaprio!). Johnny Depp as Gilbert Grape , a normal twenty four year old man who tries hard enough to hold along his happiness and his families interests.He takes care of his autistic teen age brother Arnie Grape (Dicaprio) and a family so obsessed in their own way. The movie very much reflects the life of any common man who struggles throughout his life in the wake of making his family happy and taking care of others. Movies of these kind very much connects people around the globe, highlighting the fact that every individual, every family and every culture cares for others and has an ordinary yet engaged life. The scene involving Gilbert and Becky ( A free spirited women who GIlbert meets!) where Gilbert is asked on what exactly he wants speaks a lot for all the people who live in between the decision of happiness and commitments.Overall, The relationship between Gilbert and Arnie is one that will make all to feel happy about.

These two movies, though has different plots, very much relates to lives of real common man/ women that we surpass in our daily life and yet we miss to admire them for whom they are.These kind of movies breaks through the barriers of language and country to stand for universally emotions and relationships that is common to all.