A couple of years back…
Interviewer – Why your films are filled with elevation scene & high moments frequently?
SS Rajamouli – In my childhood, I watched a film which was a blockbuster at that time with my cousins, everyone liked it but I was bored & walked out. For me to keep me hooked to screen there should be enough high moments. That’s the reason my movies are filled with such scenes.
Interviewer – Did u watch the oscar winner Parasite?
SSR – Yeah I tried but couldn’t get connected to it, felt bored & discontinued.
There was this outrage in social media regarding SSR, not liking Parasite. As an ardent follower of SSR, this didn’t surprise me but seems like fans of parasite & pseudo film lovers took it to heart ?
Trolled Rajamouli, gave classes of film making to him, calling him jealous, digging up his old movies & posts to criticize, troll & have fun. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Let’s analyze this situation in different aspects
Born to writer Vijeyandra prasad, he always had this habit of listening to stories & studying mythological stories & then narrating them to children around the house. This is how he got the interest in storytelling & then joined as an assistant to K Raghavendra Rao in directing serials before getting a break to direct Jr.NTR in Student No 1 ( 2001 ). He directed a total of 11 movies till now & didn’t have a single failure.
Why all these backstories for the topic we are discussing?
A person’s opinion where he liked a movie or not depends on various factors, kind of mood he’s in while watching the movie, his personal preference ( like mythological or high moments filled entertainer stuff in case of SSR ), getting connected with characters, etc.
Usually, in films, there will be 2 types, the art form & the entertainment one. The majority of the world looks movie as a medium of entertainment that’s the reason we see superhero films getting good collections or commercial entertainment doing well at Box office. The artistic aspect of the film is noticed & celebrated by movie lovers where the general audience has little to none idea on that.
SSR is kind of director who’s more into this entertainment angle if you go through all the 11 movies he made, the template is simple, a revenge drama with a deadly villain packed with high moments & good music, which is a deadly combination for commercial entertainer & despite having huge expectations on each subject, he managed to satisfy the audience. Satisfying the audience with huge expectations is pretty tough than the normal one, even a small mistake can push the movie into a flop/disaster zone.
It’s funny how people ( usually pseudo film lovers ) give lectures about film making to one of the successful directors of Indian cinema. ?
Parasite is clearly not the type of content that would be liked by a person like SSR. It’s not like he made a random announcement in degrading it ( No doubt, Parasite is a wonderful film ), it was just a casual video call interview with news channel & in random questions, the interviewer threw a question regarding parasite & he answered it in a casual way. ( The people who furiously debated & shared the content will not ask for video proof of this interview, if he really said this or not -_- ).
The other aspect is commercial vs artistic film making, the usual debate of which is the greatest. In the first place, this debate shouldn’t be there as the 2 departments hold it’s importance in world cinema. Where the majority of the audience is looking for entertainment filled content but there are quite a few instances where the art is also encouraged.
But the mindset of people is what makes the worrying factor in a healthy discussion. People who love the art side of cinema always come up with a troll content on those who love the entertainment one.
For ex, take this incident itself, the opinion of Rajamouli was turned into Baahubali vs Parasite battlefield, where the people dug up the Baahubali climax & trolled it ( Obviously the climax part is screwed with the CG scenes but the comparison with Parasite is lame ).
Commercial content will never get it due credit from film lovers, as most of them feel that the commercial content is a disgrace to the cinema, this is where they fail to understand about the opinion of the general audience, leave about understanding, making fun of someone who loves commercial content in the name of love of cinema is insane stuff.
For those who are making a comparison between Baahubali vs Parasite, Parasite made a total of $254,218,961 world gross whereas Baahubali made $254,158,390 in 2017 itself. As a movie lover, you might have loved Parasite but for a general audience, Baahubali might be liked more than Parasite. Want to test this, just show Parasite to children or families around you then see the reaction of them.
Comparison is the worst thing, Rajamouli can’t make a film like Parasite & similarly Bong Joon-Ho can’t make the stuff Rajamouli is doing.
Commercial content is not easy, even it needs specific skills to execute it in Indian cinema, the plot can’t be twisted, it should be a simple one filled with emotions but shouldn’t be a routine one, should be filled with songs & action scenes in intervals but shouldn’t overdo that. A decent music album & good marketing is what all makes a commercial content to be a hit. Even if one aspect doesn’t execute properly it will fall in a routine bracket & then eventually sees a flop results.
No one demeans the artistic side of cinema, it’s also an art form but everyone should be sensible enough to know that even commercial content is an art form.
Psuedo film lovers
If there is someone who degrades cinema then these are the guys who do that. Film lover tag doesn’t mean we can make fun of commercial content or someone who loves commercial cinema. I have seen bizarre cases where people make fun of movies choice of others & troll them in the name of bad taste. Even a shitiest of the shitiest film might be liked by someone out there & the best of the best might be hated by some, it all comes down to what you like.
Because of the internet, exposure to world cinema has been rapid & it’s actually a good one but few people take it as an advantage to troll others. If you didn’t like a film, you have every right to troll it, even if it’s something like Shawshank redemption or Race 3 or Parasite. For this small issue, I have seen people fighting like kids, calling the person as having bad taste, etc. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
The very moment you make fun of other people’s movie choice or type of content they watch, you are no longer called a movie lover. As a movie lover, we hold a bit more responsibility in handling things & hope people would take care of that.
I have seen some bizarre posts & discussions on this topic, so I thought of putting in thoughts in an article. That’s the reason started from a bit of background of SSR & details of commercial content & the mentality of pseudo film lovers.
Rajamouli is one of the cool & humble people I have ever seen when 1-Nenokadine got released, the disaster talk was going on from first day ( which is now considered as a masterpiece in Telugu cinema ) then Rajamouli arranged an interview with Sukumar where they both discussed the high points of the film explaining the epicness of content in that & thus encouraging the audience to watch it. Time & time, he’s the one who supported Sukumar ( who is considered as one of the best in film making & a worthy competitor to SSR in Telugu cinema ), being the top director in the industry, he doesn’t have any business to be like a free advertising product of Sukumar but he’s done that quite a couple of times.
Even his off-screen attitude, where he married divorced women & then decided to not go for children rather adopt one, still few people calling casteism is in the blood is stupidity.
We all felt proud when a non-English movie made its presence felt in world cinema & in Oscar, hopefully, people would do the same for Indian cinema ( either it’s an entertainer or not ). Baahubali made quite a few strides towards it, the only non-English film to be screened in London’s Royal Albert Hall ( with a history of over 120 years ) & made a huge market for SSR & Prabhas in Japan. You might not even know the boundaries it crossed but surely when you travel to other parts in the world, one day a foreigner might recognize you from the land of Prabhas or Baahubali ( This is based on real-life incident shared by Pooja Hegde ).
It’s not like we shouldn’t troll him, they are plenty of troll videos on his movies comparing the scenes which are similar to few other language movies or foreign films but this kind of criticism on opinions is stupidity & shouldn’t be encouraged.
We all love cinema, that’s what got us connected but opinions & people’s mentality is much more than the cinema. Understand a person’s mentality before judging him or making fun of him, before that when someone shares a hate content ask them for video proof of it.
Finally just imagine what would be your thoughts, if Bong Joon-Ho made similar comments on Baahubali, for sure your thoughts would start with, Baahubali is not the type of content suited for Bong then think why you aren’t able to do the same for SSR.
Be cool & Spread positivity. Most importantly Stay Home, Stay Safe & Watch Movies…..