Yes, I am not a movie buff. I don’t watch movies much nor do I remember them for long. I think I stopped taking movies seriously after 1994. I last danced (without being pulled over in a baraat or DJ in college) on Pak-Chik-Pak-Raja-Babu (The song lifted from Chikku-Bukku-Raile and made ‘awesome’ by Govinda by wearing Michael Jackson’s Bad attire) on my own by doing all those moves and rolling over the floor dancing / ROFD. I could also do that stuff kids used to do back then which was imitating a fan by rotating one of your legs squatting on another leg while dancing. I have seen Allu Arjun do the same recently. He only got to know about it now? Poor chap.
When I was growing up I was told that watching movies is not a good thing at all. Instead, it was taught that one should concentrate on studies. I used to play a lot and watched Cricket at odd times. But no movies. Probably because my experience of watching movies was weird. Once I had to gone to watch the movie Dil along with my uncle when I was just 3.5 ft tall in a nearby movie theater called as ‘Lakshmi Mandir’ in Jaipur. Now they show only 18+ movies there sadly. Or rather good for some. While I was entering the hall, because of it being crowded, I got lost in the darkness. When my uncle finally found me after 10 minutes, my cheeks were all wet because of tears. I mean how can a 3.5 ft tall guy tolerate being lost in darkness while Saeed Jaffrey unleash wrath on Aamir Khan and Madhuri. Then once I went to see Bol Radha Bol with my parents (I think that was the last movie I saw with my father and mother together in a theater). Sadly, we couldn’t see the climax because my younger brother kept on weeping throughout the movie and father decided to go home because he didn’t want others to get disturbed. I felt so bad that I told them that ‘leave me and go, I will come back on my own’. He instantly declined the plea because it was a night show and I was just 3.7 ft tall. Later, I got the video cassette of the movie and watched it on VCR at home itself. I loved the movie by the way. During the period from ’94 till ’98, I just watched very less Hindi movies and usually Animated movies or Jurassic Park sequels only in theaters. Including Godzilla.
Studies weren’t helping either. Probably I was in 7th and read this beauty of a story in Hindi called as ‘Punchlight (पंच लाइट)’ by Phanishwar Nath ‘Renu’. It was a story about a village where the Punch (village headmen) weren’t able to use a Petromax lamp and then a guy called Godhan (who was considered a useless and छलिया types guy because he used to watch many movies and sing indecent songs from them) helped them because he knew stuffs. Although the story was pro-movie watching as it said that watching movies makes you aware of stuffs but till then I had decided that movie watching is a waste of time.
Now after coming to Bangalore, the only pastime left here is watching movies because there is nothing else to do in this city frankly. In past 2 years, I watched more movies than I had watched all my life. Moreover MMP happened. I got in touch with so many people who are movies aficionados that I feel awkward to comment on anything. I have been often called as a movie buff whenever MMPIndia was featured in newspapers which made me feel bit weird. If one makes some graphics out of movies, that doesn’t mean that he is into movies or anything as such. But. But I don’t hate movies. I just hate useless movies. I admire some cinematic brilliance and want to know more and more about those people and watch all the movies they have made. People can discuss lengths about certain characters portrayal on Twitter and write thousands of words on what they interpreted about certain movies on their blogs. I don’t. I don’t review movies because art is subjective and carrying out discussions over fiction is not my cup of tea till now. The movies which were offered to us in 90s and 2000s kept me at bay as well. When I watch a 70s movie, they look so much better (and so slow but still good) because their content was worth watching. Seriously, if you keep feeding a person with bad quality food, one day he get used to it. And when suddenly you serve him great quality food, he won’t like it at all. The taste of the movies of my friends has moulded in such a way that they can watch Salman Khan movies and like them. I cannot. For me to become a movie buff, I need to see better movies. Better directors who are plenty in number nowadays can do that. There are some great people on Twitter who know a lot about movies and I am keen on learning from that. Being an Indian, one cannot be separated from Movies and Cricket. Hence, I should not get away anyways.
Having said that, if you find out the number of movies an Indian watches on an average, I would still have seen lesser number of movies than that number. And I would like to keep that this way. As they say that if you start watching more and more movies, you begin to explore for more and more about them. I am currently in that phase.
P.S.: I watched Matru Ki Bijlee Ka Mandola today and liked it instantly. Great quirky and intelligent humor. I recommend it and refrain from giving any rating.