Good content driven movies are not new phenomena in indian cinema. We have already encountered since 60s but like change is part of any civilization or human life same occurred in Indian cinema which eventually turned out only in Bollywood. Firstly we need to understand Bollywood is not sole representer of Indian cinema infact it is just a entity of ocean. Why I am saying content had it’s own long back story with filmmakers like Bimal Roy, hrishikesh Mukherjee, shyam benegal, guru dutt.
We had tendency to watch good cinema but off course how human evolve too fast in peculiar manner as no other species able to do. That’s how ‘Art of filmmaking ‘ appeared to distorted in 80s and 90s.
What is content?
First, we need to track down the meaning of CONTENT that what do we mean by content ?
Information , experience of our surrounding ; expressing through the medium of writing , speech, poster and film. The main components are here – Information and experience. When any filmmaker portraying real life challenges , situations what happens people feel attach to those situations audience ready to believe what writers wants us to believe audience feels like he/she like me it okay not to be okay.
Content is something when filmmaker become successful to build that bond between script and audience which was result of real life experiences.
Golden age of Cinema
60s and 70s was the time when Indian cinema was on it’s peak of content driven script best part was audience love those movie. Let’s talk about few movies from that time – A kannada film Malaikkallu (1954) beautiful love story , Bedara kannapa. Bimal Roy was one of the finest filmmaker in india. He made movies on class struggle, casteism. For instance Do bigha zameen (1953) which was story of misuse of Power, Sujata( 1959), Bandini (1963). Each film has their own questions to the Society. These are not critical claim movies but real entertainment even in 21th century.
Hrishikesh Mukherjee who introduced new blend of entertainment and depicted the real life difficulties beautifully like in Anand (1971), Anari ,Abhimaan (1973) these films has its own substance to deal with filmmaking. If we talk about Abhimaan , Mukherjee was depicted as love, bliss, anger, ago, heartbreak and reunion of love again.
Now, the man who inspires and motivates young filmmakers to work on their ideas makes us all love his movies that is one and only satyajit Ray who changed the entire experience of filmmaking. The Apu trilogy (1955- 59) , The music room (1964) even though these films are in Bengali Language but language couldn’t switch off the impact.
Guru dutt another renowned filmmaker who made such incredible films – pyasa, kagaaz ke phool, chaudhvin ka Chand. Shyam benegal is one of understated filmmaker in modern time and for millennials. He gave Nishant , ankur, manthan( Indian’s first crowdfunded film by farmers who donated 2 rupees each) & terikal. Nishant was emphasize on during the time of feudalism in India, rural elite and sexual exploitation of women. This movie selected for Palme d’or 1976 Cannes film festival. The treatment of movie was so real that appeared very much real even in today’s time.
One element was common in 60s and 70s that filmmaker were not afraid to make good cinema, those makers knows how to write script that turned into great screenplay. Remember this is all happening in 60s where no use of excessive technology or no business Mongols of Bollywood.
Emphasis of Bollywood
From the time of 80s the style of filmmaking was changed or more likely to say distorted. Now, in 90s the explosion of star power corrupted the scripts , producers more inclined towards taking big stars in their movies without thinking about script and screenplay.
In 80s & 90s most common script pattern was “love story” and STARS like we don’t have mind to understand other kind of genres. Movies like – Tezaab, lamhe, raja hindustani , Dil toh pagal hai Chandni and kuch kuch hits hair, Hum aapke hair kon an d Hum sath sath hai etc. Now, we are not saying these were the only type of movies at that point of time exist ; there was also good movies like parinda, arth, sparsh, masoom, ek doctor ki maut, Drishti.
Reign of the good movies
After the gangs of wasseypur (2012) Bollywood discovered new and improved love for content driven cinema. After that Bollywood flooded with good filmmakers but old, rotten content still not vanished but level was decreased.
Queen, gangs of wasseypur, Hindi medium, The lunchbox , Vicky donor, udta Punjab , Shahid, talvar , piku are the movies which got tremendous account of love from audience as well as critical claimed movies. So now happened producers started to invest their money in fresh and fine scripts distributors had to turned their sides.
Let’s talk about web series if we talking about content web series culture changed the whole market for digital media. Where filmmakers are ready to play with screenplay, giving twist and turn. In this process , actors who are talented but put on backfoot now got their fair chance and basically employment.
When Content became Business
Movie business is unknown to commoners but insiders (families of Bollywood) knows really well how this business runs , have their production house. The whole idea is big production house grabs more screens on the basis of big stars only. Distributors are all set to do whatever these big house demands for example Thugs of Hindustan. In terms of box office collection masaan was flop but not literally. Ishqzaade, jab Tak hai jaan , rowdy rathore, ek tha tiger, agneepath, cocktail , Chennai express were all big blockbusters but as far as we see content was in dry and ancient well.
Regional Cinema of India
Regional Cinema has vast variety of exploration , big spectrum of ideas most importantly courage to implement their ideas in better screenplay. Veedu , sairat, chumbak, jogwa naal, aamas , visaranai, baaram all these movies has their different way to deal with society norms which wrapping in entrainment.
We should start praising good movies, audience (we) are everything in show business. If we find bad scripted film good because of stars then we are at the wrong side. We are investing our money at wrong recreation in terms of movies. Now we have to decide what we want in our entrainment list. Create a kind of environment for stars that if they produce and feature in trash films we not going to watch then stars will also take serious measures in the departments of script, writers and audience.
Remember we make them stars so, we are more responsible!!