Showing posts with label Movies. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Movies. Show all posts

Friday, July 11, 2014

What's In The Name?

What was the last movie you watched?

Can you recollect the lead character's name? The hero, the heroine or the villain. Chances are, as hard as you may try, you will not be able to remember the name of the characters. 

I had never given any thought about name of the characters until I watched 12 Angry Men, a film that tells the story of a jury made up of 12 men as they deliberate the guilt or acquittal of a defendant. One of the alibis provided by the defendant is that he had been out watching a movie when the crime was committed. But when questioned, he is not able to recall the names of the characters. When this point is discussed, Henry Fonda, one of the jurors, asks other members if they remembered the names of the characters in movies they watched last. Guess what, no one is able to recall the names! 

Though it is not the absolute truth. For example, I remember Guna or Virumandi, or say Veera, Muthu or Basha. I also remember some villain's name. Gabbar Singh from Sholay or Mugambo from Mr. India. Interestingly, I am not sure if I remember Anil Kapoor or Sridevi's characters' name. But then I can never forget that Hema Malini in Sholay was Basanti. These are probably exceptions! 

But in general, why is it that the names of the characters are forgotten so easily? Are the names of the character not an important element? Why is it that some character names get etched in our memories while others don't even leave a scratch mark in our "hard drives"? Well it maybe a factor of how our nervous system is hard wired. 

Which movie characters' name do you remember? Mention it in the comments. 

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Is it a DVD Movie or Theater Movie?

Going to theaters to watch a movie was an event. I still remember as a kid the excitement would start much in advance. For a long time, maybe due to innocence or ignorance, no movie was good or bad. I just loved watching movies. Going to theater with parents or friends or relatives was always desired.

There were times when I was willing to pay a premium (black tickets). While on the others, I would be quite satisfied with the front row seats that cost a fraction of the normal tickets.

Over a period of time, due to changes in technology and economics, the business of watching a movie has changed drastically.

I recently watched watched Kalavaani at the newly opened PVR Cinemas at the Ampa SkyWalk Mall in Chennai. While I loved the movie, I thought it wasn't worth watching it in theater.

What does that mean?

Before I articulate, let me clarify that watching a movie in theater is still in many parts of the country and sections of society an event. But then the following developments are important to consider:

  1. Continuous improvements in TV technologies, boom in TV channels and rapid adoption of Cable & Satellite
  2. Ability to record and distribute content: While it was difficult in the VCR and VCP days, it wasn't impossible. But with the arrival of digital age, any content is, today, available to any one. Storage devices (earlier floppy disks to CDs to external hard disks, today) have made distribution easy; Internet just broke all the shackles in distribution.
  3. The growth and improvement in the area of acoustics and home theater.
A combination of the above makes watching content in the comforts of homes a better option than visiting theaters. And thus began the downfall of theaters. Many theaters, at least in Chennai, have closed. Or have evolved, like the Sathyam Theater. The economics of ticket pricing also hasn't helped. And piracy has become rampant.

Blimey, like a very bad film scriptwriter and a very good Soap Opera story writer, I have digressed so much from the subject. But then such a detailed explanation was necessary to come to the central point.

Now back to the difference between theater movie and DVD movie is quite simple. DVD movie is any movie that doesn't require mega infrastructure and technology to enjoy it. For example, Kalavaani was a good movie. But it wasn't spectacular. Neither sound nor visual. It was plain simple. Now, to watch this movie in theater, even if it's just two persons, would be an expensive proposition. Even in Chennai where the highest ticket price is only Rs. (sorry, my keyboard is still not equipped with the new Rupee symbol) 120, it would cost minimum Rs. 250. Online booking charges, parking, let alone the snacks. With large screen TV and a good home theatre watching the movie at home makes more sense. Movies like Kalavaani are DVD movies.

On the other hand, think about Avataar. You can never relish this Magnum Opus in the confines of the four wall of your home. The movie is meant for theaters. That it was 3D was just an additional reason.

Am I thinking too much about it or do people, in general, are selective?

As I have articulated in my previous blogs, would it help if movie producers become practical and consider launching movies in DVD and Internet?

Or do you think theaters will remain as favorite destination to watch movie, forever? Will going to movie remain an occasion, just like going out to eat, going to beach or holidays are?

How do you like to watch a movie?