Entertainment Mollywood 09 Dec 2017 Ode to Malayalam cin ...

Ode to Malayalam cinema

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | VANDANA MOHANDAS
Published Dec 9, 2017, 12:08 am IST
Updated Dec 9, 2017, 12:08 am IST
Sentimental Celluloid takes you through the journey of 90 years of Malayalam cinema.
T.K. Rajeev Kumar
 T.K. Rajeev Kumar

Every year, as curtains rise for the IFFK, along with the best movies from all over the world, excitement is high among cinephiles to know how the signature film is being made. This time, an aptly titled Sentimental Celluloid, directed by T.K. Rajeev Kumar, has won the hearts of movie buffs.  The film opens to a tea stall of yesteryear, where a young lad sticks a poster on the wall. The poster keeps changing along with the movie names on the boy’s vest; together, the background music too varies from popular songs and punch dialogues of each era. As the attire and ambience varies as time progresses, the boy remains the same young guy with happy, curious eyes. And then, the credits roll in — ‘Welcoming 90 years of Malayalam cinema’. Rajeev Kumar, the man behind the signature film, says that it is more of a tribute to 90 years of Malayalam cinema. 

“I have tried to include all the milestones of Malayalam cinema. Any movie that comes to your mind has found a place in the film, either as poster, song or dialogues. The premises too change – there are people rallying carrying red flags, which subtly denotes the socio-political changes Kerala underwent. Towards the end, a crowd walks towards the boy who faces them as various movies play in the background. It represents hope; that films will always continue to motivate and entertain people,” he explains. The interesting factor that catches your eye is that this time, the film has not many animation or graphic elements. “That was a conscious decision. I wanted to add a human element to it. The theme is based on nostalgia. The flickering movie names on the boy's costume is a reference to the magic of visual language. That the boy never ages points towards the eternal youthfulness of Malayalam cinema. Whatever changes happen, movies are here to stay and will never die,” he clarifies. 

 

To criticism that the signature film focuses on just Malayalm films in a festival that caters to an international audience, Rajeev Kumar recalls how acclaimed South Korean filmmaker Kim Ki-duk was taken by surprise during IFFK 2013 when a bus on the road slowed down and the passengers screamed 'Kim Ki-duk'. “Our film literacy and passion are very high. It's a matter of pride for us as the hosts of IFFK that our cinema is turning 90 years old. Let the whole world too know that our movies are beyond the 'Malayalam Cinema Today' category.” 

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