I was fortunate enough to have a chance to visit the National Museum of Indian cinema in Mumbai. The museum is housed in two buildings – the 5 storey new museum building and the 19th-century Victorian gothic bungalow Gulshan Mahal. We arrived there at 1:40 p.m. The museum is housed in two buildings – the 5 storey New museum building and the 19th-century Victorian gothic bungalow Gulshan Mahal. It is a house of quaint artifacts of India’s pre-cinema history, it also showcases over a hundred years of Indian cinema through nine sections raining from the origins of Indian cinema to the studio era of new wave. Gulshan Mahal discovers nine aspects that are Origin of India, cinema comes to India, Indian silent film, the advent of sound, the studio era, the impact of world war 2, creative resonance, new wave and beyond & regional cinema. Besides artifacts, posters, film clipping, etc. Adjacent to the historic building is a classy building.
The swanky building house has mobile exhibitions, 3-D compatible theatres with 4 K projectors and 7.1 surround with specific themes Gandhi and Cinema, Children Film Studio, Technology, Creativity, and Indian Cinema & Cinema across India. Gandhi & Cinema: it not only depicts the movies made on the life of Mahatma Gandhi but also showcases the deep impact his life had on cinema. Children’s Film Studio gives visitors, particularly children, an opportunity to explore the science, technology, and art behind filmmaking. It offers hands-on experience on various facets associated with making a cinema-like camera, light, shooting, the experience of acting, etc. – presented in an interactive format. The exhibits displayed include chrome studio, immersive experience zone, stop-motion animation studio, virtual makeover studio, etc. Technology, creativity & Indian cinema: it showcases the creative use of technology by Indian filmmakers over the years to produce a cinematographic impact on the silver screen. Cinema across India: it showcases the charismatic kaleidoscopic presence of the vibrant cinematographic culture across India.
The trip aimed to gain knowledge on Indian Cinema and to understand Its importance. We get to know that Cinema has been one of the greatest influences in our modern life, and it’s also a form of art, the seventh art along with photography, architecture, literature, play, painting, and music. It’s the combination of technology, business, entertainment, and aesthetics, each and everything of these four has an important role in the present-day world. The first Bollywood movie was Raja Harishchandra (1913), however, it was a silent movie. In 1931, Alam- ara came which was India’s first sound film. Then in 1937 came Kisan Kanya which was India’s first color film. We were free to explore the museum on our own.
The visit to Gulshan Mahal was fascinating. The old artifacts gave us a brief idea about how films were made in the 20th century. There were instruments like Praxinoscope, Thaumatrope, Phenakistoscope, mutoscope Modern animation from plates of The Horse in Motion by Eadweard Muybridge, etc. that were used for making films. We also saw old film posters; cameras were used during that time. Then we visited the glass building which had all 21st-century movie posters and film equipment. Something which caught my interest the most was the Bioscope Show. There were different types of camera lenses used for shooting, we could also watch our favorite movie scenes and could listen to songs which made it fun.
Then my second favorite place was Children Film Studio. We had a lot of fun; we got experience or opportunity to become an actor, director, cameraman, animator, etc. We also tried using the green screen and got a virtual makeover. Amidst the fun, we realized how much we got to know about cinema. We then went to explore Gandhi & Cinema. Gandhi, British-Indian historical film, was released in 1982, which tells the story of Mahatma Gandhi and his struggle to win independence for India through nonviolent civil disobedience. The movie won eight Academy Awards, including that for best picture, and five Golden Globe Awards, We even had got to spin the Charkha. The charkha, or spinning wheel, was the physical embodiment and symbol of Gandhi’s constructive program. It represents Swadeshi, self-sufficiency, and at the same time interdependence, because the wheel is at the center of a network of cotton growers, carders, weavers, distributors, and users. It was an enjoyable and informative trip.