The enigmatic bollywood impacts and it is the other way round too. The grandeur and charisma of our Indian cinema touches all of us counciously or subcounciously. Trends and fads generate from here in a big way. The big screen experience which is visually alluring and a feast for eyes with myriad of emotions makes an enchanting pot-pourri.
Not long ago a hit from bollywood factory essentially had the leading actors grooving in the exotic foreign locales. Europe with its classic brick paved roads and old world style buildings would prove to be a perfect backdrop for our ‘masala’ dance numbers. How can the swiss alps be forgotten where the leading lady can be seen gyrating to romantic numbers in skimpiest of clothes leaving the audience gaping wide mouthed with her beauty and also making a bold statement that yes she is ready to titillate her hero and also the audience by braving this sub-zero temperature!
Not any more…our very own Indian cinema has gone local and truly Indian in a big way. Our movies are being extensively shot here in the places we all know and are very familiar with. The larger than life ‘Hanuman statue’ in Dilli with a passing metro is ubiquitous and so are the famous Delhi momuments like Humanyun tomb or Qutub Minar or let’s say these monuments are becoming more popular thanks to Bollywood flashing those in its songs and dance sequences. Who can ever forget Shahrukh dancing to his craziest best in front of the mamoth Red Fort in his very forgettable ‘Fan’ or an Aamir serenading kajol in the intriguing ruins of Qutub Minar in ‘Fanaa’?
Of late, bollywood has gone remarkably realistic and since locations play an extremely valuable role in taking the storyline further, our film-makers are depicting India and even the semi-urban rural heartland in its full glory. A ‘Ranjhana’ shot extensively in the bylanes and ghats of iconic Benares was one of the much loved love story. Surprisingly, Bollywood is not clamouring for gloss or glamour anymore, movies are being shot in real houses with chipped off paint and shabby kitchens and congested bylanes which perhaps make the most of our India.
Real local issues are being raised in our Indian cinema and very real Indian locations are being tapped. The latest and much anticipated is ‘Padman’ shot extensively in the 300 year old town of Maheshwar on the beautiful ghats of Narmada in the heart of India, the Madhya Pradesh. I would say this is the ‘diamond’ period for silver screen where a real and may be dusty and rustic landscape is shown in full glory. Why hunt for dream locations off-shore when our dreams lay very much here in these bylanes and shores that we have all grown up in. Cinema is real now and how!