Posts Tagged ‘Paa’

I know nothing about editing. I don’t even understand how people get it by just watching films. But recently i read a wonderful piece on editing by Deepa Bhatia. I requested her if it can be shared on the blog so that it can reach more people. She agreed instantly and so here it is. Thanks to her, and hope you guys enjoy it as much as i did.

Deepa BhatiaDeepa has edited films like Hazaar Chaurasi Ki Maa, Thakshak, Dev, Maine Gandhi Ko Nahin Mara, Taare Zameen Par, Rock On!!, Stanley Ka Dabba, My Name Is Khan, Ferrari Ki Sawaari, Student Of The Year, Kai Po Che, and has directed the documentary Nero’s Guest. Over to her – @CilemSnob

A media school requested me to put down a note on my process of editing for fresher film students. ‘A ready-reckoner sort of thing’, they said. Of course, I didn’t offer the short cut document they were looking for, but the idea set me thinking. Let me attempt expressing; if only for myself, the delicacy, the intricacy and the nuances of editing.

As I sit to try and articulate my thoughts, my know-it-all- son prompts, ‘joining?’ Having made his share of little videos, edited mostly on i movie, it’s a fair shot. But not good enough, I answer. My mother in long shot contributes, ‘Like Stitching?’ ‘Somewhat Mum…Stitching together a design (read scene) visualized by the designer (read director), darning over its flaws, cutting it correctly so it fits into the larger landscape of the garment. (Read film)’

Not bad, but still not bulls eye.  Agnes Guillemot’s description comes to my mind. “I discovered that cinema is music and editing is like being a conductor. I don’t invent the themes but I can produce orchestrations- I can adapt therefore I can edit.”

So there are shots, and each shot has multiple takes. To pick then, the right take, from the right shot and arrange it in that perfectly right way for the magic to happen.

That’s the moment I seek. A shot placed differently to change the meaning of the narrative. 6 frames off a cut and the moment transforms drastically. A sequence rearranged to create a new truth.

In the quiet of my empty editing room, my heart shrieks with joy.

The heart thumps at the discovery…a day well spent.

SEEING THE MATERIAL

The moment of ‘magic’ is within reaching distance of those interested in ‘listening’ to the material. More than the script, more than the director, it is the material that speaks. It reaches out, hoping you see it with care and attention, not missing a detail…a tear, a quiver in the voice, an actor trying something new, hoping you will catch on to his or her little secret, a camera lingering that extra second or a surprise shift focus that adds a delicious taste to the scene.

So the key lies in seeing. Really seeing with all your senses alive and focused. When that happens, the director usually appreciates the cut. ‘Great, that’s exactly as I saw it’.  Or ‘That’s more interesting than the way I saw it.’ That’s when you know that you saw with your soul and intellect in perfect harmony.

HARMONY AND RHYTHM

Harmony is of utmost significance.

Soul and Intellect.

Reason and Instinct.

Listening and Dictating.

Following and Leading.

It’s a tight rope. I often realize that, when I am guiding my young team through their scene cuts, and helping them achieve that harmony.  ‘You are ignoring the actor’s rhythm; you are imposing your own rhythm on the material. WHY ARE YOU NOT LISTENING TO THE VOICE OF THE MATERIAL?’ At other times, I implore, ‘didn’t you see the pauses are too much and the performance is lagging? USE YOUR SKILL AND BRING RHYTHM INTO THE SCENE.’’

Contrary advice because editing demands that you react differently to different kinds of material and give it form in response to its ‘personality’. Like parenting. As a mother, I know for a fact, no single rule applies to all children and all situations, so your ear better be on the ground. Listening when the child needs to speak, but speaking when it is his time to be quiet and listen.

Asserting, yet leaving room for dialogue.

A little of this and a little of that.

And in that delicate balance, lies the art of editing.

RUMINATION

And how will you find the magic? Craft helps, no doubt. Experience too wizens you. But, in the end, for me, it boils down to integrity. Integrity in watching the material, in seeking the truth from it, in devoting complete time to a project so the process becomes instinctive and not merely physical.  I am inspired by the devotion of classical musicians, and I believe editors must have the same quiet soulful relationship with the material.  If you are running from one editing ‘job’ to another, where is the time to ruminate, to mull, and to contemplate? Writing and Editing, the two ends of the filmmaking spectrum, that allow you time to think, we editors insist on rushing through.

When I lock the edit of a film, I often embark on yet another journey of watching and revisiting all the rush again. When a scene is edited, it is in the context of the script and of the film, as you know it then.

Once it is edited, it is an all-together different entity, a full-blooded  organism. You will be amazed at how you find bits of film that didn’t seem relevant at first cut or even final edit, that worm their way into the film. So processes are critical. Give yourself time to think and contemplate. It’s my golden rule: the answer to most cinematic problems lies in the rushes.

LATERAL VISION

The script makes an imprint. Then the material follows with its own voice. And yet, the editor must be able to see things differently, to be able to flip the visual on its head if the need arises, to relook at material all the time, with new eyes and new imagination. I call it the Little Prince approach. ‘Is it a hat, or an animal swallowed by a boa constrictor?’ Keep your heart and mind open to discover that.

SYNERGY

When you enjoy the material, and editor-director sensibilities match, that’s the film that’s going to work best.

When you sleep thinking about the film, and wake up, raring to go to the editing room, that’s the film that’s going to work best.

When your director respects that you have a point of view; that may or may not be his/her view, that’s the film that’s going to work best.

When you work like co-parents to protect, nurture and raise the child, without ego, without doubt, always, always aware, that the child is bigger and more important than anyone, that’s the film that’s going to work best.

I also feel it is important to develop your own relationship with the material. A director lives with his film for years. He starts with the germ of the idea; it simmers in his heart and mind, is then poured out into the script and finally filmed with effort, time and money. If you are to be of some use to the director, it is important to own the film as much as he does, to know it as intimately, so you can do your best for it. A mother can touch the head of her child and sense that the temperature is different from usual. She can sense that because she knows her child so intimately and deeply and dearly. This innate knowledge helps her sense something amiss and find the right and timely solution for her baby. An editor must be committed and sensitive enough to find the same deep relationship with the material, to be equipped to do the best possible to it, for it.

My son pops his head in and brings me back to base. ‘You started by wanting to explain what editing is. That hasn’t happened yet mum…

Why is it so important to explain what I do? Because very few, even in the business of filmmaking, seem to recognize it for what it is.

There are some simple ways of judging editing.

Anything short is usually good editing.

Anything fast too is good editing.

Anything with razzmatazz is of course good editing.

DAMN, IS THIS FILM WELL CUT OR NOT?

As an academic exercise, I looked into recent films that I liked and didn’t, and studied the critical response to them, particularly to the edit. The truth stares out clearly.

 Somehow, no one is able to separate the film experience from the editing. The two are deeply linked.  It’s easy to spot good cinematography, art direction, costumes, but can you ‘see’ an edit, beyond the film?

Almost never.

And so it follows, have you ever read about an editor being praised for a film that the reviewer did not like? It’s impossible! This facet of cinema is so deeply linked to the final outcome, to the way the film finally shapes up, that we, as editors must accept that burden completely.  Very recently, I edited “Student of the Year” for Karan Johar. One critic found it ’20 minutes too long’, while another said the editing was ‘fantastic’.  On Stanley Ka Dabba, one critic commented, ‘Let me warn you that Stanley Ka Dabba is slow. In places, the story seems stretched’ Another felt its ‘very-well sliced together…the pacing really works’

 ‘The truth is that their reaction to the edit is linked directly to their reaction to the film.

So can a bad film be cut well?

Or is every good film well cut?

I believe both are true. I believe if you like a film, or if it ‘works’, it means the editor has done the job well. The fact that a film comes together and the spell works, implies a good editor at work. (A recent example being English Vinglish, that I thought was beautifully edited by Hemanti Sarkar).

Being an editor, I often see the craft and emotional tenor in the work of some of my peers. Not a single review of Paa, for example, spoke of the breakthrough scene cutting, where jump cuts were used within a dialogue scene to create a certain pace and energy. Not many people appreciated the use of freeze frames in a film about speed and motion, a device Aarti Bajaj employed with great effectiveness in Paan Singh Tomar.

PROCESSES

In terms of processes too, some films fly out of you with very little effort. Rock On, for example, is really one the simplest films I have cut and we completed the edit in a relatively short time span.  Taare Zameen Par required more work and application because people in test screenings were resistant to its philosophy and we needed to get the balance of the edit delicately right to achieve a certain aesthetic portrayal, while telling a story.

Stanley Ka Dabba, in particular, was a labour of love. Certain processes were followed while filming, that defied conventional grammar, and yet we had to achieve a narrative that was acceptable to an audience. Amole and me spent many hours playing with footage; reinventing the story and its telling, and literally carved out the purest film possible from the material. Yet, I’ve rarely been complimented on its editing, the way I have been for say, Rock On. And yet in my mind, it remains my best work!

I’ve finally concluded that films that have form to fall back on are much easier to edit than stark plainer films. The editing is in the face, easy to notice and therefore easy to appreciate.

The hitch is when the film needs work on the table. That’s the time when director and editor need to recognize and accept that work is needed, reinterpretation is needed, a fresh approach is needed. It’s a very delicate process, for makers are deeply attached to their material. Editing out a chunk is heartbreaking. Editors must be deeply sensitive at such times and accept that the process will take time and effort. And sometimes you hit a deadlock because directors are too headstrong and sometimes, we ourselves, as editors lack clarity and vision. I try my hardest; I fight with my entire being if I am convinced something should go out of the film. I explain, try to convince, scream, shout, bully and finally beg and implore if I am dead sure! I don’t always succeed but I try my best.

I personally felt a sense on failure while editing My Name is Khan. We had some issues with the unfolding of the second half. (I took about a year to edit the film). We slogged to get it right and at one point, I felt that I had achieved the balance. My director was totally supportive of me shaping the film, and was completely open to shortening and re-interpreting, and yet I didn’t get it bang on. A dear critic friend met me and dug the nail deep. ‘I thought it was a super film, and then the Hurricane came’.

So obviously, we were unable to curb the excesses that bothered both critics and audiences and I take the blame completely. Somewhere, in working overtime to get the second half right, I lost objectivity and I feel it took a toll on the film. I failed on the one benchmark I set for myself. Make the film the best it can be. Whatever the material, whoever the director, make sure the film reaches its own ‘potential’.

In the end, the truth about editing lies buried in an editing room, known best to only the director and the editor. The director, of course knows the contribution and role of the editor, regardless of the outcome of the film. But it is the editors and the editors alone that know how committed and focused they were, how truthfully they engaged in the ‘process’ of editing. For in the process lies the fruit. In the effort lies the reward. And in a truthful approach, lies a good, peaceful night’s sleep… That you did everything possible to make the film the best it could be, without short-changing it, without judging it, without giving up on it, regardless of how good or bad it was.

The Best Feature Film Category were announced under the Chairpersonship of Ramesh Sippy, Non Feature Film Category under the Chairpersonship of Mike Pandey, and Best Writing on Cinema under the Chairpersonship of Samik Bandhopadhyay.

In the Feature Film Category, 136 eligible entries were distributed between five Regional Juries. The selection process returned to a Two Tier System of Selection. The Chairperson for the Northern Region was Sushma Seth, for the Western Region M.S. Sathyu, for South –I Region T.S. Nagabharna, for the Eastern Region B. Lenin and for South- II Region Shri Pinaki Choudhry.

BEST FEATURE FILM – Kutty Srank (Malayalam)

INDIRA GANDHI AWARD FOR BEST DEBUT FILM OF A DIRECTORLahore (Hindi) – Director : Sanjay Puran Singh Chauhan

AWARD FOR BEST POPULAR FILM PROVIDING WHOLESOME ENTERTAINMENT – 3 Idiots (Hindi)

NARGIS DUTT AWARD FOR BEST FEATURE FILM ON NATIONAL INTEGRATION – Delhi 6 (Hindi)

BEST FILM ON SOCIAL ISSUES – Well Done Abba (Hindi)

BEST CHILDREN’S FILM – Putaani Party (Kannada) & Keshu (Malayalam)

BEST DIRECTION – Abohoman (Bengali) – Rituparno Ghosh

BEST ACTOR – Amitabh Bachchan for Paa (Hindi)

BEST ACTRESS – Ananya Chatterjee for Abohoman (Bengali)

BEST SUPPORTING ACTOR –   Farooque Sheikh for Lahore (Hindi)

BEST SUPPORTING ACTRESS – Arundhati Naag for Paa (Hindi)

BEST CHILD ARTIST – Pasanga (Tamil)

BEST MALE PLAYBACK SINGER – Rupam Islam for Mahanager @ Kolkata (Bengali) –

BEST FEMALE PLAYBACK SINGER – Neelanjana Sarkar for Houseful (Bengali) –

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY – Anjuli Shukla for Kutty Srank (Malayalam)

BEST SCREENPLAY – (Original) : P.F. Mathews & Harikrishna for Kutty Srank (Malayalam). (Adapted) Kanasemba Kudureyaneri (Kannada), Dialogues : Pandiraj for Pasanga (Tamil)

BEST AUDIOGRAPHY – Location Sound Recordist : Subash Sahoo for Kaminey (Hindi)

Sound Designer : Resool Pookutty for Kerala Varma Pazhassi Raja (Malayalam)

Re-recordist of the final mixed track : Anup Dev for 3 Idiots (Hindi)

BEST EDITING – Arghyakamal Mitra for Abohomaan (Bengali)

BEST PRODUCTION DESIGN –  Samir Chanda for Delhi 6 (Hindi)

BEST COSTUME DESIGNER – Jayakumar for Kutty Srank (Malayalam)

BEST MAKE-UP ARTIST –   Christein Tinsley & Dominie Till for Paa (Hindi)

BEST MUSIC DIRECTION – Music Director (Songs) : Amit Trivedi for Dev D (Hindi),

Music Director (Background Score) : Ilayaraja for Kerala Verma Pazasi Raja

BEST LYRICS – 3 Idiots (Hindi) – Swanand Kirkire “ Behti Hawa Sa Tha Woh……………”

SPECIAL JURY AWARD – Sreekar Prasad for Kaminey (Hindi) & Kutty Srank (Malayalam) & Kerala Varma Pazhassi Raja (Malayalam)

BEST SPECIAL EFFECTS – R. Kamal Kannan for Magadheera (Telugu)

BEST CHOREOGRAPHY – K.Siva Shankar for Magadheera (Telugu)

BEST FEATURE FILM IN EACH OF THE LANGUAGE SPECIFIED IN THE SCHEDULE VIII OF THE CONSTITUTION

BEST ASSAMESE FILM – Basundhara

BEST BENGALI FILM – Abohomaan

BEST HINDI FILM – Paa

BEST KANNADA – Kanasemba Kudureyaneri

BEST KONKANI – Palatadcho Munis

BEST MALAYALAM FILM – Kerala Varma Pazhassi Raja

BEST MARATHI FILM – Natarang

BEST TAMIL FILM – Pasanga

SPECIAL MENTION — Padmapriya

In the Non- Feature Film Category the following awards were announced:

BEST NON-FEATURE FILM – (Sharing) The Postman  and Bilal

BEST DEBUT NON-FEATURE FILM OF A DIRECTOR – (Sharing) Vaishnav Jan Toh – Director : Kaushal Oza and Ekti Kaktaliyo Golpo Director: Tathagata Singha

BEST COMPILATION FILM – Pancham Unmixed

BEST ENVIRONMENT FILM INCLUDING AGRICULTURE – In For Motion

BEST FILM ON SOCIAL ISSUES – Mr. India

SPECIAL JURY AWARD – Kelkkunnundo Child artist : Aasna Aslam

SHORT FICTION FILM – Boond – Director: Abhishek Pathak

BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY – Gaarud Cameraman: Deepu S. Unni

BEST AUDIOGRAPHY – Gaarud – Re-recordist (final mixed track) : Lipika Singh Darai

BEST EDITING – In Camera Editor: Tarun Bhartiya

BEST NARRATION/VOICE OVER – In Camera Best Voice over : Ranjan Palit

SPECIAL MENTION – VILAY – Cinematographer : Nitika Bhagat – Certificate only

In the Best Writing on Cinema Category following awards were announced:

BEST BOOK ON CINEMA : CINEMAA YAANA (Kannada) – Author: Dr. K. Puttaswamy

SPECIAL MENTION – Eka Studioche Atmavrutta – Prabhakar Pendharkar

BEST FILM CRITIC – C.S. Venkiteswaran (Malayalam)

Fuck the Filmfare, Screen, IIFA, GIFA, Stardust, Zee Cine and every XYZ Awards. They are all the same. Tv shows that needs naach-gaana and stars. And so the competition is who sucks better than whom and which star!  Most of them are organised by even management companies who get the stars to do naach-gaana and make sure that everyone gets a fat cheque.

So, here is the real deal – Golden Kela Awards by Random Magazine . Desi Razzies! Pure honesty! 100 percent shuddh!Its the second year of the award. And for a change, we agree with every choice of theirs. Thats rare! Outlook’s Follywood Awards are also good but Golden Kela Awards scores better because they have much better categories.

Worst Film – Kambakkht Ishq

Worst Director – Ashutosh Gowariker for WTF is Your Raashee 

Worst Actor – Harman/Hurman/Harrman/Harmun/Whatever Baweja for WTFYR

Worst Actress – Kareena Kapoor for Kambakkht Ishq

Worst Supporting Actor – Ranvir Shorey for Chandi Chowk to China

Worst Supporting Actress – Deepika Padukone for Chandni Chowk To China

Worst Debutant Male – Jackie Bhagnani for Kal Kisne Dekha

Worst Debutant Female – Shruti Hasan for Luck

Worst Pair – Rani Mukherjee & Shahid Kapoor for Dil Bole Hadippa

When Did This Come Out Award – Deepak Tijori’s Fox

Most Original Story Award – Dil Bole Hadippa copied from She’s The Man

Baawra Ho Gaya Hai Ke Award – Sylvester Stallone & Denise Richards for Kambakkht Ishq

Most Irritating Song of the year Award – Pritam for Love Mera Hit Hit from Billu Barber

Most Atrocious Lyrics Award- Sameer for Love Me Love Me from Wanted

Special Awards 

The Lajja Award for Worst Treatment of a Serious Issue – Kabir Khan & Aditya Chopra for New York

The Dara Singh Award For Worst Accent – Abhishek Bachchan for Delhi 6

The Black Award for Emotional Blackmail – Paa

The Insensitivity Award – Chandni Chowk To China

The Bas Kijiye Bahut Ho Gaya Award  – Madhur Bhandarkar

The Critic’s Award of 2009 – Taran Adarsh

Cyrus Broacha, the chief guest of the show was awarded the Cyrus Broacha Memorial Award this year. To read more about the awards, nominations and blogs, click here. And click on the play button to watch a tv report on Kela-ophobia.

We never expect Filmfare to recognise the real talent beyond the stars and the celebs. Because they are star-fuckers who sell stars, want to keep everyone happy and want them to show up at their annual award ceremony. Its a tv show after all. Needs trps, needs money! Its all about how Film-Un-fair they are. But this year it seems lil better than last few years. Here is the list of winners…

Popular Awards

Best Film: Vidhu Vinod Chopra for 3 Idiots

Best Director: Rajkumar Hirani for 3 Idiots

Best Actor in Leading Role (Male): Amitabh Bachchan for Paa

Best Actor in Leading Role (Female): Vidya Balan for Paa

Best Supporting Actor (Male): Boman Irani for 3 Idiots

Best Supporting Actor (Female): Kalki Koechlin for Dev D

Best Debutante Director (Male): Ayan Mukherjee for Wake Up Sid

Best Debutante Director (Female): Zoya Akhtar for Luck By Chance

Best Dialogue: Rajkumar Hirani and Vidhu Vinod Chopra for 3 idiots

Best Screenplay: Rajkumar Hirani, Vidhu Vinod Chopra and Abhijat Joshi for 3 Idiots

Best Story: Abhijat Joshi and Rajkumar Hirani for 3 Idiots

Filmfare Critics Award

Best Film: Firaaq

Best Actor (Female): Mahi Gill for Dev D

Best Actor (Male): Ranbir Kapoor for his consistently outstanding performances in 2009.

Filmfare Music Awards

Best Music: A R Rahman for Delhi 6

Best Lyrics: Irshad Kamil for ‘Aaj Din Chaddya’ (Love Aaj Kal)

Best Playback Singer (Female): Rekha Bharadwaj for Genda Phool (Delhi 6) and Kavita Seth for Iktara (Wake Up Sid)

Best Playback Singer (Male): Mohit Chauhan for Masakalli (Delhi 6)

RD Burman Music Award: Amit Trivedi

Filmfare Technical Awards:

Best Visual Effects: Kaminey

Best Choreography Award: Bosco-Ceasar, ‘Chor Bazaari’ from Love Aaj Kal

Best Production Design: Helen & Sukant for Dev D

Best Action: Vijayan Master for Wanted

Best Sound Design: Manas Chaudhury for Firaaq

Best Editing: Sreekar Prasad for Firaaq

Best Cinematographer: Rajeev Ravi for Dev D

Best Costume Design: Vaishali Menon for Firaaq

Best Background Score: Amit Trivedi for Dev D

Actor Shashi Kapoor and Music Director Khayyam were given the Lifetime Achievement Awards.

BTW, Bachchans didnt attend the Filmfare Award this year in protest against this story done by their sister publication Mumbai Mirror few days back. They have been demanding apology from Mirror. But so far, nothing.

PS – Here is goss of the day. It seems Riteish Deshmukh & Jacqueline Fernandez’s act was sponsored by the producer of their forthcoming film Jaane Kahan Se Aayi Hai. Remember last year Vashu Bhagnani paid a fat cheque to Filmfare for getting his son Jackie Bhagnani on stage for the promotion of his debut film. He happily informed all his family members, relatives and friends asking them to watch his son dance at the Filmfare Awards ceremony. Remote was kept aside and they waited and waited and waited for Jackie to show up on small screen. Surprise! There was no Jackie act when it was telecasted on Sony Tv. Why ? Because Filmfare never guaranteed them that the act will get tv play too. It was edited out. Aur bolo ?

2009 – The Master of Feel Bad started the year delivering his career’s first hit and the Master of Feel Good Cinema ended the year with a recording breaking monster hit! Aha, not that bad if we count only the boundaries. After the musical notes of the year, we sat down to discuss the filmy notes of the year. Here it is – the good, the bad and the fuglies!

1. Best Credit Roll – If ever a credit roll said something so simply and superbly, this is it. Luck By Chance. Also great debut by Zoya Akhtar.

2. Anurag Kashyap turned musical and how! More than a dozen songs and we discovered Amit Trivedi.

3. Anurag Kashyap – 2009 belongs to only one director. Dev D, Gulaal and even Paanch finally got a release, you know where. Whats more, he finished shooting his next film That Girl In Yellow Boots in just 13 days. Aur bolo ?

PS : The same Anurag Kashyap wrote the dialogues for Kurbaan ! Strange bedfellows remained strange.

4. Nobody, we repeat nobody, can save Harman/Hurrman/Harmann/Harrman/Whatever it is Baweja.

5. Wooden Film of the Year – New York. Three good looking woods with zero expression.

6. Ranbir Kapoor – Dude of the year! He is not only working with best directors of bollywood but delivering his best too. Cool & confused, fool & romantic, middle class & lost – he did it all.

7.Imran Luck Khan – The poster boy of 2008 is light years behind Ranbir. He only talks cool and acts still uncool.  Competition, whats that ?

8. Imtiaz Ali has only one story to tell. The journey of cool and confused lovers on the verge of marriage. First time, they were about to mary. Second time, they were close to marriage. This time, they finally married and then solved their problem. More here and here.

9. Samir Karnik got money to make one more movie. Who ? Where ? Why ? How ?

10. Rani Mukherjee’s career is over. Hadippa!

11. Multiplex cinema & hits are not everything. Its a big myth. Ask the makers of Wanted. Or is it only Salman Khan ?

12. And if its Salman Khan, why Main Aur Mrs Khanna packed up in just two days ? As they say, nobody knows anything. And what was UTV smoking ? 

13. Overrated Gimmicky shit of the year – Paa. More ramblings here.

14. R Balki should stick to making tv commercials. One idea and thats it. He also told the same story again. Smart & dying child bring lovers back together. Age gap somewhere. Check.

15. Akshay Kumar’s bubble busted and how!. He failed everywhere. Chandni Chowk, China, Hollywood, under water, inside or outside Tasveer.

16. The Invisible Director – Who is Anurag Singh ? Does anyone knows him ? The man who put the last nail in the coffin of Rani’s acting career. Hadippa!

17. Sanjay Gupta and gang (read Suparn) are still copying. Even the promos! Now the Unknown ones! More here.

18. Suresh Nair – the only writer to have two big films releases on the same friday. Aladin & London Dreams and both flopped.

19. Underrated Film – Sooni Tarporevala’s delightful Little Zizou, where all the possible parsis united to turn bollywood into pollywood! ( Missed Barah Aana, Mohandas)

20. Ripley’s Believe It Or Not – Sunil Shetty got an award for acting in Anant Mahadevan’s Red Alert – the War Within. Believe it, nobody has seen the film yet.

21. Most Subtle Expression of the year – In Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra’s Delhi 6, a man lands up with a mirror to show your andar ka kala bandar! Beat this!

22. Nagesh Kuknoor – Dont give him big budgests and big stars. He will go cuckoo-noor!

23. Vishal Bhardwaj delivered again. Five films in a row. And showed us Amole Gupte – the actor. More here.

24. Ajab Prem ki Gazab Kahani tried too hard to be Andaz Apna Apna. Insanity happens! You cant plan and design it.

25. ENG Filmmaker -Madhur Bhandarkar continued his expose and it finally flopped.

26. Smirk & Smug of the Year – Vivek Oberoi in Kurbaan. It was the ROFLOL film of the year where terrorism was wrapped in chiffon saree.

27. RajKumar Hirani lied to all of us and made the same film again. As a friend said, its Munnabhai B Tech. More here.

28. Couple Of The Year – Jaideep Sahni & Shimit Amin who delivered Rocket Singh – Sales Man of the Year! More here.

29. The only U-25 who proved us wrong – Ayan Mukherjee. Wake up Sid. Confident debut. More here.

30. Only 12 scenes, not 12 roles – Ask Priyanka Chopra. Easily the best performance of the year. Length doesnt matter, performanace counts. Vishal did it. Gowariker failed.

Bravery Awards  – Aftab Shivdasani turned writer and producer with Aao Wish Karein.

Someone directed a film titled Jai-Veeru!

Abhijeet Sawant turned actor.

LOL Titles Of The Year  – They said it all. No explanations required.

Kal Kisne Dekha

Do Knot Disturb

Fruit & Nuts

London Nightmares

Blue-s

Aa Dekhein Zara

Dhoondte Rah Jaoge

Ek Se Bure Do

(Tough) Luck

Shorkut – The Con Is On

PS. ENG – Electronic New Gathering.

Coming up next –  what to expect in 2010!

Its that time of the year when we love making those lists. The best, the worst and the top ten. We sat down with some of our favourite music in non-stop loop and made our list of the good, the bad and fuglies. Whatever caught our attention, from every possible extreme. 

1. Ripley’s Believe It Or Not – We had Himesh Reshammiya in non-stop loop! He had Rekha Bhardwaj for company, but this Himesh is all new. Check it out, if you still havent!

2. Cuss Word Converter – Give a cuss word to him and it will never be the same again. The reason why Gul-still-Czar! Add Vishal’s vocals and you have the best title song of the year! Meri aarzoo kamini, mere khwab bhi kaminey, ek dil se dosti thi, yeh huzoor bhi kaminey!

3. Whats In  a Name Song – Earlier they had no names. It was kabootar ja ja ja and atriya pe lotan kabutar re! Rahman and Prasoon Joshi made sure that we all googled Masakalli. And you are still wondering whats in a name, that too of a dove!

4. Religion Converter Song – It seems that A R Rahman is hell bent on making sure that we go for religion conversion soon. First it was Piya haaji ali, then Khwaja mere khwaja and this year he gave us Arziyaan. If I ever convert, blame it on Rahman, only Rahman. For cheap thrills, we still try to count the number of times “maula” is there in the song. Whats your count ?

5. Killer One Song  – Shankar Ehsaan Loy had the complete album, Amit Trivedi killed them with just ek gaana called ek taara!

6. New Genrae – Piyush Mishra invented a new genrae of mujra, polticial mujra!  Jaise door desh ke tower me ghus jaye re  aeroplane. Gulaal. Now our only worry is if he can be denied USA visa for putting 9/11 in a mujra

7. Legends Should Retire – Dont attack us! But if this is what we get, legends should remain as legends. Illayaraja’s music did little for Cheeni Kum and it was the same for Paa. Except the theme tune nothing worked in Paa. The udi mudi judi or whatever it is, doesnt stay even for few seconds! or May be legends should never work with their fanboys!

8. Song ONLY for the Big Screen – It proved us wrong. Dhan tedan! Its only for the big screen, in a dark theatre. We saw it once. We went again. Watching it on tv, we were wondering why has Vishal shot a song inside a nightclub in such unimaginative way. We saw it on the big screen and ate all our words, twice!

9. Musical Aag of The Year – Is Ashutosh Gowariker’s music sense complete zero ? Was it all Rahman ? Like his film, the music CD was quite a fat one packed with 13 forgettable songs! And shot in similar way! Is this the same man who shot yeh jo desh hai tera & khwaja mere khwaja ?

10. Music That Was Hit in Fantasyland – The album was hit in twittosphere but shit otherwise. Aladin. The cast and the crew went on overdrive with their tweets but as Time Out’s Nandini Ramnathan wrote, it was all gone in sixty seconds!

11. Vishal Dadlani must be the only rock-star who writes nursery rhymes. Have you heard the “hey baby, you may be” whatever shit it is! But he can put his vocals to great use. Kurbaan hua had our Rocky in full throttle!

12. No Pun Intended SongPocket me rocket hai, pocket me. As a friend said, it sounds like a great jingle for sex toys.

13. Cheap-est Thrill-est Song – Only for Adults! Bold and bitchy! Dev D. Courtesy lyricist Amitabh Bhattacharya. Pyaar, emosanal atyachaar, bitch and (w)hooooore – all at one go!

14.  Best Installation Art in a song – Chandni chowk came close to New York, Gau Mata was near Gucci and we had our eyes wide open because Dil gira daftan.

15. Mohit Chauhan can do a masakalli and melancholy with equal ease! Can we now spare him! Why only rona dhona senti menti songs?

16. Best of 2009 – Bunch of kids got together in an “Audio Garage” and delivered the album of the year and the love anthem of our generation. Dev D. Music director, lyricist, singers – all new. Amit Trivedi, Amitabh Bhattacharya and the gang! ( If Rahman and Bhardwaj dont deliver, who will. So, would not put them here). 

17. A R Rahman gave us a musical note for boo boo. Its called Buuloooo.

18.  Best Closing Notes of the Year – Check out the last 2 mins of Rehna tu! Pure bliss. Can someone enlighten us what instrument it is. 

19. Underrated Songs of the YearPankho ko from Rocket Singh – Salesman Of The Year and Delhi Destiny from 99. Everything else gets so much overplay that the joy of discovering a good song is almost dead. Jaideep delivers one of the best lines of the year…..uljhe nahi to kaise suljhoge….bikhre nahi to kaise nikhroge.

20. Imtiaz Ali is going for formula in his music too. One punjabi bhangra for closing credit, one peppy number with english words, one sad song in Mohit or Raahat’s voice and blah blah! Partner in crime – Pritam.

21. Weirdest Words of the Year – Bhangra bistar! Courtesy – Jaideep Sahni.

22. Wannabe BPL Rock Album of the Year – London Dreams.

23. Worst Musical Import of the Year – Kylie Minogue with chiggy wiggie! whatever that means.

24. Worst Musical Export of the Year – Rahman with Couples Retreat. Why, O Dear Lord, why ?

25. Self-Flagellation Song of the YearBebo main bebo!

26. Musical Sucess Party of the Year – Dulha Mil Gaya! Yes, they threw a party to celebrate its musical success. Who is listening ?

27. Jingles of the Yeardil titli…dil titli….kabhi yaadon ka…kabhi sapno ka and Yeh kis pyaari hifazat me ho befikri ki haalat hai..yaara o yaara. First one is by Swanand Kirkire and second by Gulzar.

28.  Few things that never change – Atif still singing out of tune, here, there, everywhere. But its still working…tu jaane na ( Ajab Prem ki Ghajab Kahani )nobody knows why and how! Confession – we also love it!

29. Cinematic Homage Song of the Year – Akira Kurosawa from Chintuji. Its a riot…Kapola kapola! Listen carefully and see how many filmmakers you can spot!

Coming up next is filmy fuglies of the year!

PS. BPL – Below the Poverty Line.

Surprise! surprise! Someone has suddenly found a new love. Till yesterday he had a favourite hobby and every night before going to bed, he used to spare time and space for it. Just go to his blog and you can read all those lovely words dedicated to the hobby called media-bashing. Even the film Paa wasnt spared, though there was no sense to it.

Now that his home production Paa has managed to get some good reviews and making money at the box office, he has mailed love letters to media persons working in various newspapers, magazines, channels and portals, thanking them for their support and appreciation. All signed by him. Guess what happened to that good old hobby!!??? Though we cant reveal the person’s name but a good soul mailed us a copy of the letter. Have a look.

If you cant read the text of the letter, it says….

My Dear XXX,

I am writing to express my deepest gratitude towards you and your prestigious XXX for giving our film “PAA” support and appreciation.

The magnanimous affection demonstrated by the media has been most overwhelming. Our company and we wish to express our gratitude for this kind gesture.

                                                                     With warm regards

                                                                     Amitabh Bachchan

                                                                    Abhishek Bachchan 

Not very very long ago, the same Amitabh Bachchan wrote these lines on his blog…

You mention in your article under reference that I should not forget that the media has had a distinct hand in my stardom. Ho ! Ho Ho ! … now we are all laughing !

Firstly, I have never ever accepted or believed in this media created epithet of stardom or any other ‘dom’. And secondly, for 18 years under the ban of the media, Amitabh Bachchan ‘the actor’ that you admire, had his most successful run at the box office.  So get off your high horse and smell the dung. Media will be incapable of making or breaking an actor. Only the masses have that strength and you are still very far away from that criteria.

You can read the full post here. This was in reply to Abhijit Mazumder’s column in Mid-day.

Dear Mr Bachchan,

What happened ? Is the letter a mistake ? Why this change in stand suddenly ? Or is this a fake love letter ? An actor of your calibre surely knows how to fake it, and fake it well.

MFC

BTW, Big B’s next release Rann directed by Ram Gopal Varma also promises to expose the media. The remote controlled country! And he is the same actor who created that Patna based stupid monster SKJ, whose claim to fame is false reports, a mention by Bachchan on his show Kaun Banega Crorepati and Sonu Nigam! Talk about corrupting the media. Ho Ho Ho…now we are all laughing!