The Creatively Bankrupt Indian Cinema And Television

Posted on April 27, 2011 in Media and Culture

By Srishti Chauhan:

There was a time when the Indian film industry produced masterpieces such as Guide and Mother India. And now has come a time when India is known more for lifting stories and making crass imitations of the Hollywood movies. One cannot but ignore the majority of films that flood the market every year which can be describes as no better than a poor man’s attempt at adapting a creative genius.

Kites and The Notebook

Hritik Roshan’s last movie, Kites, is claimed to be ‘inspired’ by the film, “The Notebook”. While few doubt the authenticity of this claim, there is very little that has been done after this allegation. There has, in fact, been a series of movies in recent times that have been direct lifts from Hollywood movies. Movies like “Hey Baby” and “Mr. ya Miss” are direct lifts from “3 Men and a baby” and “Hot chick”, there are other movies who have somewhat Indianised the entire story to make it seem more like original work.

Movies, however, are not the only things that Indian directors and producers believe in laying their hands on. The trend of lifting tunes from songs composed in other languages had also picked up trend long back. With music composers Anu Malik and Pritam infamous for the same, this is one trend that is here to last. The problem with condensing the act of lifting of tunes lies in detecting the veracity of the claims by various ‘artists’ around the world. When some Egyptians artists claimed the ownership of a song apparently composed by an Indian artist, the decision making reached a dead-end due to lack of proper evidence against either party.

The presence of a greater creative genius possessed by Hollywood is felt not only in movies and songs but also in television serials. While serials made in USA focus more on tickling the brain cells, Indian shows like CID, focus on over-acting- sometimes bordering on blatant stupidity.

There can be one traceable reason for this utter lack of thinking outside the box- the fact that maybe Indian audiences are not yet mature enough to be able to handle a mind-jolting series like Dexter or a thought-provoking idea like Castle. There, however, is already a counter of this which is doing the rounds. A recent series on Sony by the name of “Aadalat” has not only captured the interest of critics but also that of the audience. While the precision and the acumen with which the show is directed has been appreciated by most, the ideas are also intellectually stimulating relative to usual standards.

This lack of creativity is at display in not only the detective field of stories. It is at display in the famous saas-bahu sagas as well. The storyline of most of them is touted to be more or less the same. According to a talk show, “Only once in about 5 years do we get to see a show where we cannot predict what happens for about next 20 episodes.”

This more than clearly states the state of Indian creative industries. While other industries which are less glamorous are full of immense, yet unearthed talent, the industries mentioned above seem to have reached their worst yet intellectual bankruptcy.

The advertisement makers for one are a part of a sector whose talents are not yet recognized to their full extent. Never before has there been a dearth f good creative work like we see at present. Indian creative genius may well be said to be going to “the dogs”. The stricter implementation of copyright laws than transcend the barriers of language and countries should be implemented. Having a panel that is inclusive in terms of having on board representatives from the Boards of different countries can and should be made to induce Indian film makers to think rather than just lift scripts off from other movies.

Lastly, a robust copyright in terms of stories is specially desirable since it is easier to assess story-line rather than keeping an eye out for all films in general. Media help in procuring the guilty shall also be instrumental.

The examples are numerous. And never before have they been so apt. now that the industry has more or less reached the bed , it’s time we get some stimulating substance under production!

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Anonna Dutt

We have a rich history in film making, what with film makers like Satyajit Ray, Shyam Benegal and many more. Indeed, it is sad but true that Bollywood has started making cheap rip offs of Hollywood movies but there still exist people like Anurag Kashyap who try to do things differently.

Being a media student from one of the best colleges in India, in my view the problem are the people who are in the industry. Most of them are not trained in film making but have learnt it on the job. The difference is that when we formally study films we are exposed to world classics and get a better understanding of movies. Also, we are trained to think differently with all the assignments and projects that we get. We are given the freedom to experiment. I believe that when film makers like this are able to gain a foot hold in the industry they would change the industry.

Also, many a times there are professional mis- match in the industry such as Himesh Reshamiya acting instead of singing and Remo D’ souza trying to make movies instead of dancing. Parts of the movie FALTU was shot in our college and thus many of my friends went to see it. I still think it is just a bad rip off of Accepted

Another major problem is that the audience too likes the crappy movies … I mean Dabanng getting the best movie award when a movie like Udaan was made in the same year really does not make any sense!

anamika

Your argument ended with copyright?? What has copyright has to do with creativity. Like how the Hollywood keeps on creating squeals of the same movie?

Limiting the copyright would encourage people to come up original ideas.

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