Feb 29, 2012

‘Filmy’ and Feminine Things

Before coming to the gist of today’s post, let me share with you a latest attempt made by me in the field of film making. It is a short film, (or at least I call it so), made using the high definition facility of my point and shoot camera, with artistic help of the friends and people around me. The short film titled ‘The Movie’ is the one you see below. It’s about film making actually. Though made in my mother tongue Malayalam, I have given subtitles in order to communicate with the non-Malayalam speaking blogging buddies.

Okey, after completing the works of the film, during the weekend, I went to Thrissur, a neighboring district, to attend a film festival, where you could see so many wonderful films – feature length ones, short films, and documentaries – from all across the world. When I reached the film festival venue after a one and a half hour long train journey, an open forum was happening in the campus of the theatre. I saw so many delegates including foreign people with cheer and vigour participating in the open forum by letting on their views about contemporary cinema.

But what I noticed more was a woman with a movie camera covering the entire proceedings. The reason why I noticed her was the fact that film making and camera operating is a less attempted area by women in my conservative Kerala (India in wider perspective) . The camera woman, called Lakshmamma, is an illiterate one, hailing from some rural areas of Kerala’s neighbouring state Karnataka. But the fascinating fact is that with her poor academic background, and little knowledge in film making, she had so far directed some 100 documentaries. This is the picture of Lakshmamma busy with her job, that I shot using my camera.

While travelling back to Cochin after watching one or two films, I chanced to notice another woman character at the railway station. She was a police woman, but more exactly the term police girl would have been apt for her. We have seen so many muscular police women. But, this one was actually a girl. In her khakhi uniforms, she looked a little more determined than any other girls.

So, I hope you have seen the short film made by me. I acted the lead role, though not appearing most of the time (a winking smiley). I will dedicate another post for this film, to detail about its making and themes, but the choice of such a post will definitely be based on the feedback from the readers cum spectators.

Feb 18, 2012

In an Unfinished Building

I was itched by a small pang of jealousy, when my friend informed me about his unexpected small fever; because from my point of view, such fevers that meant for killing unwanted viruses are modes of emotional satisfaction and in a way are cathartic. When he expressed his wish to see me at his flat to escape the boredom, without a second thought, I immediately set off for his dwelling place.

Reaching at a junction, of which we both had a common familiarity, he informed over the phone to take a left turn,

“Take the road to the left immediately before reaching the bridge,” he added over the phone.

Just before entering the bridge, I saw a road which was not in good shape laid almost parallel to the highway road through which I reached that far. 

“Why my friend lives in a flat located in such a wild area,” I thought while carefully leading my bike through that way that was full of road metals and weeds.

That path led me to a huge – very huge building. Contrary to what I got from my friend’s description about the place, I found that the building was a new residential flat of the area currently under construction. With its unfinished and unfurnished walls and exteriors, busy-bee construction workers moving in and around in a meddling manner, and scaffolding things scattered all across the area, the building in no way could be counted as a place inhabitable. My friend had already informed me about the developmental state of the flat that he was dwelling. As he informed, only some suites of the flat had been finished, and he was dwelling in one such a suite. But, I didn’t imagine even in my wildest dreams that he was living in such an uncivilized flat, which was only in its skeleton form.

I inquired at the security counter about the inmates of the flat, to which he admitted his ignorance.

“But, go to the downstairs, and ask to the bosses in the office. Perhaps they may be able to help you with the information of the people who you are looking for...”

I went to the office room, and to my great dismay, I found that it was locked. When moved around, I found some construction workers, and when asked them, all of them unanimously expressed their ignorance of anyone living upstairs.

“It is very unlikely that someone staying in this flat. But go and check at the upstairs. I don’t know if you would find your friend there,” one of the laborers, who looked like a supervisor opined.

My friend’s phone call once again assured me that he was there in the fifth floor. 

“Come to the fifth floor. Don’t ask anyone. Because majority of the workers do not know that we are living here,” he said.

Hesitantly I climbed the steps to the fifth floor.  Everywhere I could see only unfinished areas. Without proper lights and lack of electricity, some of the corners looked like the hideouts of ghosts.

While climbing the steps to the fifth floor, a worker from the top floor suddenly appeared in front of me giving me a little scare. Meanwhile, my friend’s telephone calls came in search of me twice or thrice.

“Why don’t you use the lift instead of the stairs,” he asked. But to my dissatisfaction, I couldn’t find even a single lift which was in proper working condition.

At the fifth floor, I decisively stared at the thickening darkness around me. Dialing my friend’s number, I asked him to come out of the room, since nothing was visible due to the poor engineering of the building. Scarcity of proper sunlight was one of the problems there.

His reply surprised me, “Buddy, I am already outside of my room, waiting for you. And here it is full of sunlight. You will miss my sight only if I am a ghost”.

I began to feel that the direction he gave me was wrong. We discussed about my doubt over the phone. He asked me if I had taken the road to the left before the bridge.

“Yes,” I said, “I took that road, which looked like a rustic path immediately before the bridge,”

“Rustic path? No, the road leads to my flat is a tarred one. It is a main road,” he said.

We discussed about it and finally found that I had taken the wrong direction.

It was actually the road to the left from the junction that I reached first.

He apologised over the phone while I was taking the downstairs in haste. And I felt the steps to the ground floor and the light walk from there to the place where my bike was parked were more tiring than usual.
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