Saturday, May 23, 2009

Gorky On Celluloind

An article by Muralidhar Khajane, which appeared in today's (21st May 2009) issue of The Hindu.

GangwayZ, a group of youngsters from Mysore, has produced a 130-minute Kannada feature film Jaaga Doreyutthade (or Spaces for rent (sfr)), based on Maxim Gorky’s play The Lower Depths.

The director of the film, N.S. Islahuddin, is a gold medalist in Journalism from the University of Mysore and has a Masters degree in Media Production from the University of Sunderland, England. “I have made sincere efforts to contemporise the play in the background of economic slowdown,” says 27-year old Islahuddin.

On the adaptation of The Lower Depths, he says as a student he was impressed by its content and when he decided to direct a film, the play came as a natural choice for adaptation. “Of course adapting the play to the present scenario is quite a challenging task. Bringing the modern day elements, while retaining the essence of the original play, is not easy. Jaaga Doreyuttade is set against the backdrop of recession and panic related to it and so needed a completely new treatement,” he says.

Islahuddin describes the experiment as “community or cooperative film making”. He speaks of the difficulty they faced when a person who had promised them financial support could not do so following which the group members themselves pitched in their resources to complete the film.
The group adapted various strategies to bring down the production cost. The team members decided to shoot the film in an empty house that belongs to one of the group members. Art director Badal Nanjunadswamy remodelled the house to suit to the needs of script. The entire film is shot in a house. To meet the requirements of the camera and lighting, Shivashankar and James Mani and their team made the best possible use of basics provided. As the cast needed actors in the age group of 20 and 27, those from the group who fit the bill were retained and the the rest of the members were involved in production.

Theatre director C. Basavalingaiah is making a comeback as an actor after 20 years with this film. “However, this film is a litmus test for the actors who have to do justice to the characters they play,” says Islahuddin.

Will GangwayZ be able to create space for itself in the film world remains to be seen. The film will be screened in Mysore from June 6th and then it will be screened in all other places across the State.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

That Night !

They say "Failure is the first step of success", but in my case failure became not only the first but also the last step.

My dreams were shattered, I lost hope in life. My life was hell. Failure was sucking me down into abyss. There was no light except darkness. Downfall became habit. I was good for nothing. I feared of going to sunlight as my shadow also started hating me. I was alone. I was insane.

That night I came home late, my family was out of station and I was alone. I prepared food and ate nicely since starving was killing me from the morning. I was watching tv then suddenly heavy wind started blowing, lightening was continuous with thunder. Rain started to make the atmosphere cool which was hot because of me throwing out the bitterness of frustration on life. That was the time for electricity company to save electricity. I was dumped in darkness as my life was roaming in kalahari desert with no hopes of oasis. I sat on my bed and started throwing light to the darker side of my past. My eyes were red bleeding tears.

Fear is the first face of darkness. Fear of failures made me brave to end my life. My will of committing suicide became stronger and stronger. I had lost hopes on myself, it made easy for my mind that surrendered itself for this single thought.

I dragged the table into the centre and under the fan. I tied a bedsheet to the fan. I kept the stool on the table. I sat on the stool to make my last wish. I prayed for my family and friends . My heart became numb. My lips were dry. My eyes became bright. My body became cold.
For the last time I closed my eyes and remembered my parents friends and all the good things of my life. I stood on the table and was about to give my neck to the claws of death.

Suddenly, I heard a voice of female outside who was calling my name. I was shocked, in a fraction of second I came to reality. I was afraid. I rearranged the table and the stool. I removed the bedsheet and hurried to see who it was. I went near the window it wa very dark outside and she was drenched in rain. I recognized her as she lived beside my house. I opened the lock of the door, went out and asked the reason. She told that she had a fight with her husband on the issue of drinking and now he has locked himself in the room.

A thought striked me like a lightening. I hurried to her house, banged the door of his room. He was not opening the door nor was answering me. I tried asking that lady but she was dumb and motionless. I ran to the opposite house to get some help. Another guy came and we both used our power to open the door. The door was opened but the guy inside was almost knocking the doors of death. I held his leg and the other guy removed the bedsheet from the neck. We made him lie down. The lady was very grateful for us. Even my heart was filled with gratitude towards her but I could not express it.

I came home searched the dustbin, I got half a cigarette which was smoked last night. I lighted it and was cursing myself for being so coward. Now the man who tried committing suicide never speaks to me face to face. And I cannot face myself in front of the mirror.

The one thing which bothered me alot was how a death came to rescue me from committing suicide. That incident remained a mystery forever as it did not answered any of my questions except it made me enlightened.

Even now I am climbing the steps of failure but I know that this time the last step is mine i.e., success.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

First KISS :-)

While I was coming to Rangayana to meet her I took a Rose as I love that a lot. It was a long time since I met her. My waiting was ended as she rode into the gates of Rangayana. My wish was fulfilled as I saw her face, she was as usual, very beautiful. The most attractive thing was her eyes which can see through the soul.

I sat behind her and told her to drive for a restaurant. Sitting behind her was like heaven. I was intoxicated by her body odour. Her curly hairs were mesmerising as they were flying on my face. She took 15 minutes to reach the restaurant but I felt I was there within no time. Whenever I sat behind her I have forgotten the whole world. Except her the whole world looked blur to me.

We reached Nalpak restaurant and had our lunch. I asked her for a long drive but she did not agree as she had to go home. I promised her that we will be back in an hour. It took hell like effort to convince her and at last she agreed. I was very happy as my dream was coming true.

I rode her bike and filled the fuel. She was very much eager to know the place I am driving, but I wanted that to be a suspense and I maintained it as a secret for some time. She got very angry for that and was carrying tons of anger on her cute little nose, but within no time her anger was down by few romantic words of mine.

I turned the bike towards Chamundi hill and the secret of our destination was revealed. There is a place near Nandi hill where you can see the whole of Mysore but uninhabited. This is my favourite spot as I go there whenever I am sad or happy to be in solitude from the world.

I wanted my best moment of my life to be spent there with her. She was shocked as I stopped there where there was no one around. I stood on the compound and she sat. I told her that I have a suspense for her. She was very much anxious and was forcing me to tell but I was thinking that how to bring my imagination into the reality. I thought for half an hour but could not find any solution. She was continuously forcing me. She talks a lot but its always sweet to hear her voice. I jumped from the compound and started roaming here and there thinking. She warned me that if I wont end the suspense she would leave. At last lightening strike me and I got the solution to put my imagination into the actions.

I asked for 5 minutes to express. She was so curious that she started a stopwatch in her mobile. There was complete silence everywhere. I could hear the wind blowing and horns of some vehicles far somewhere.

The time was running out and only 30 seconds were left. The hot wind of afternoon became colder and colder. Suddenly I was on my knees and took the rose from my bag. It was red as it was soaked in my blood which runs through my veins in search of her love. My whole body was shivering but my hand was firm which was holding the rose.


The whole world seemed to me in a slow motion. Suddenly I took her right foot on my knees. I rubbed it and kissed her foot. My dried lips tried to make an impression on her foot but it was soon wiped out by few drops of tears which fell from my eyes on her foot.