Thursday, February 28, 2013

WakeUp 102 - An artist's view might differ

Sometimes you find people being severely critical about movies; they bash it up as if the whole thing were created in a matter of minutes. I guess to an extent it is fine - because the viewer does spend some money to watch the movie and also spends their time. But still, considering the time and money we spend on watching the movie, I don't know if it is fair to be so critical to trash a movie - maybe it wasn't to our taste or liking; that's fine; but we can't generalize saying "it's crap; no one will like it."

They say literature and movies are about specific individuals while psychology tries to explain generic traits as to why humans in general behave in a particular way. So the way someone acts in a movie or book need not match with what majority people would do; so do give the director and writer some liberty for that. And it really does take quite an effort to create a movie or a book or any piece of art - why, even this WakeUp takes a lot of time and effort and sweat and what not! :-)

The problem with art is that the creator might have developed the whole thing having something in mind - but the viewers/readers might not interpret it the way the creator meant it to be. I thought of this after reading the book Life of Pi; lot of people question which story is the real one; the one with the animals or the one with humans. 

On a related note is the movie Inception. The last scene goes like this:
Leonardo DiCaprio spins a small top; the camera shows the object spinning and wobbling while DiCaprio walks off towards his children. If the spinning continues then it means he is still in the dream world; if the spinning stops it means he is in the real world. At this point the screen goes blank and the movie ends!

Voila - Hollywood style; and most people in the end wonder, "was he in the real world or was he in a dream world?"

I happened to stumble upon an interview with the director Christopher Nolan. The director didn't cut the scene for the sake of creating suspense. He cut the scene because he felt that it was the apt ending; in the start of the movie, DiCaprio was worried about whether he was in a dream or in reality and he'd keep watching the object till it stopped spinning; in fact he’d even have a gun in his hand to shoot himself in case he discovered that he was in a dream. But at the end of the movie, DiCaprio didn't care if he was in the real world or dream world; all he cared was being with his children. That's why he didn't bother looking at the spinning top; it didn't matter and so the director stopped there to get that message across.

I'm not sure how many people would have seen it that way; but Inception was a movie that people still liked even though they might not have understood the ending. But I wonder how many other movies or books or pieces of art we might have trashed because we didn’t understand the point of view.

So if you didn’t get any meaning out of this WakeUp edition, it’s not the writer’s fault :-)

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