Saturday, January 16, 2010

Saturday Gossip Part II

Okay, so my gossip post was getting way too long, so I separated out a few of think-y pieces.

Let's take a look at what non-me people are saying on the state of Bollywood.

First up is Time Magazine which has a piece called "Hollywood Meets Bollywood: Finally a Love Story?"

Unlike Jason Overdorf's pretentious Newsweek piece, Time declines to comment on Bollywood directly and instead talks about how Hollywood films are going over big with Indian audiences.

Here is a sample from the piece:

Last year was Hollywood's best performance in India to date. The success of the U.S. exports in the world's most prolific movie market — India makes over 1,000 films every year — began a year ago, as Indian audiences from Punjab to Chennai lapped up all genres of films [FG: - WTF is with that choice of words?! 'lapped up'?!] , from Sony's Terminator Salvation to Warner's Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince to the Fox Star Studio-distributed Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs. Even Baz Luhrmann's romantic epic Australia, which tanked pretty much everywhere else in the world, made $2 million on the subcontinent — enough to qualify as a decent run. The Indian box-office numbers are not impressive by U.S. standards, as tickets rates in India are a mere $1.8 compared to $8 in the U.S.; to gross $20 million, a film has to sell 12 million tickets in India, compared to 2.5 million tickets in the U.S.

"Our success was a combination of great content across genres, depth of distribution and aggressive marketing," says Vijay Singh, chief executive officer of Fox Star.

Okay, let me first point out that nowhere in this article is the BOLLYWOOD PRODUCERS STRIKE mentioned - you know, that thing which meant that for months, the only new thing in the movie theatres was... Hollywood films. Just... *face palm* at that, Time.

Also, I dislike the tone taken towards Indian audiences with the use of the phrase 'lapping up' and maybe I'm being overly sensitive but I found the author to take a pompous tone when talking about how the Indian market isn't as big monetarily as the American market.

So - what think you, Internet friends? Should I write a letter to the editor reminding them about the STRIKE?

Next up is this essay by Yasmin Alibahi-Brown about how Bollywood is doomed.

Film-makers gave us anti-imperialist fantasies, painfully truthful accounts of prejudice against untouchables and of corruption, endless tales of love-torn youngsters, communal enmities, rural life at its most noble and most vicious and dreams, many dreams of India as it would one day be.

Gone is that collective consciousness. The country is fragmented into niche markets, lusting for Western lifestyles. Many new films are shallow, trying too hard to please affluent Americans, Arabs and Brits, aspirational Indians at home and abroad. Today I hardly go to the big Bolly extravaganzas – too much like overlong episodes of Dynasty and Dallas with family homes bigger than Grand Central station, protagonists in Versace and green contact lenses, and derivative plots that abjectly yield to the power of Hollywood and London. It is as if contemporary Indian film-makers feel validated only if they find a large fan base in the West. And they know, too, that big bucks are up for grabs wherever diasporic Indians have settled.

While I agree on certain points, she also found Kurbaan to be an enlightening and extraordinary... WHAT? Talk about a film that wanted to be validated by a large fan base in the West.

Le sigh.

Finally, I appear to have found my complete opposite on the Internet. He loved Luck by Chance and Kaminey and thought Wanted was trite.

3 comments:

Ami said...

Except for the Aish angle, he was hardly leaking anything that has not been leaked b4. Farhan has previously stated the date of Don 2 shooting, and the only new thing about Ra.one is that now we know exactly how to spell and pronounce it.. *mumble mumble*

The ladies (and AK) on the cover look like mannequin.. ^^;

*Should I write a letter to the editor reminding them about the STRIKE?*
Can I comment on this here? The strike immediately popped into my mind the minute I read that extract. If you're really going to write that letter.. maybe you can end it with a dare for them to observe the same level of hunger for lapping up third rate Hollywood fare in India this year? Huh.

myrna-nora said...

I read, "Last year was Hollywood's best performance in India to date" and my brain immediately inserted the missing part of the sentence: "because of the strike in Bollywood."

It's super obvious, I can't believe they didn't mention it.

Daddy's Girl said...

Yes, like your other commenters, I can't believe they left out the strike!! And I agree with you on the poor choice of words - the picture they painted is of a hungry, impoverished population 'lapping up' Western goodies. Not feeling it at all.

Note from Filmi Girl:

I love Bollywood - and all the ridiculous things that happen in Bollywood - but it doesn't mean that I can't occasionally make fun of various celebrities and films.

If you don't like my sense of humor, please just move on by - Trolls are not appreciated and nasty comments will be deleted.

xoxo Filmi Girl