TODAY -

Film-makers, their father and wisemen

Free Thinker *

Aribam Syam Sharma
Aribam Syam Sharma



A few days back I had the opportunity to intrude in a felicitation ceremony of our national and international film awardees organized by the Manipur State Film Development Society and Cine Artists & Technicians Association, in MSFDC auditorium at Palace compound. It was a rare occasion to listen to the father of Manipuri Film movement Shri Aribam Syam Sarma who was the guest of honour of the solemn function.

He made an important observation that the national jury members always take the films coming from Bengal, Kerala and Manipur very seriously; they usually anticipate that something must be there in our films; it is a matter of honour and pride.

Syam Sarma also mentioned that our youngsters have great talent but they must be sincere and honest about their profession. I feel this is a very cogent message to our film community particularly to our producers, directors, actors and technicians.

Our young film makers may be much faster, smarter and sophisticated but the experience and wisdom of the father of Manipuri films can't be ignored. He had left his job for his passion of movie making and he has been in this field for the last 45 years or so.

Shri Syam has been the chairman or a jury member in many national film festivals. We ought to take his words seriously.

He emphasised on full dedication and maintenance of quality. Ultimately what matters is the acceptance of the film by the audience, whether it is an art film, a commercial film or a documentary.

One of the most prestigious award was the National Film Critiques Award won by Shri K Meghachandra. According to Shri Syam this award is one of the extremely coveted. Many years ago this coveted award was also received by Shri RK Bidur.

Another most exciting thing of the ceremony was the felicitation of a budding lady film maker named Smt Meena Longjam. Extremely talented Awardees like Shri Pabankumar (Director/Film-maker) and Shri Maipaksana (Director) were also honoured.

The felicitation function was further illuminated by the presence of our renowned film personalities like Shri Banka Sharma , Shri Tomba, Shri Roma and many others.

Frankly speaking I am a layman who knows nothing about films but certainly I am a connoisseur of good movies. I watched 'Olang Thagi Wangmadasu' six times and love to watch all the parts of 'Godfather' any number of times.

You will be surprised to know that I am a great fan of '007' and I have witnessed all the Bond movies from 'Dr No' to 'Skyfall'. When 'Skyfall' was released I was in London, but unfortunately I could not get a ticket as all the theatres were already house-full wherever it was screening.

Given a chance I wont mind watching 'Gone With The Wind' or 'Killing Fields' or 'A Passage To India' again; I enjoyed all these movies in 'Shakuntalam' theatre at Pragati Maidan when I was studying in Delhi. I feel nostalgic about all these.

Shri O Nabakishore (the Chief Secretary of Manipur), who was the chief guest of the function, wondered why our movie theatres in Manipur are not doing well whereas their counterparts in other cities are doing brisk business.

He believes that ultra modern theatres like PVR (Priya Village Roadshow) will be coming to Manipur in the near future. Our Chief secretary is an optimist and he was inviting our local businessmen to start fascinating theatres so that people can enjoy movies on big screens.

It is high time to revive our theatre going culture despite the existing rampant CD /download culture.

Shri Radhakumar, Commissioner Culture, while speaking in the occasion as the guest of honor stated that the State Film Policy is now on the anvil.

He expressed that film making is now an industry and it will be reflected in the policy. He also assured that the awardees will certainly get state patronage in all possible ways.

I am famous or infamous for propagating wild ideas, but I always try to be honest about my ideas. Today, I suggest our film makers to try making movies in English (may be by dubbing) so as to relate our medium to a much wider audience and also for opening wider commercial avenues.

We have seen several Chinese films made in English (or dubbed in English) which had made humongous earnings and profits. We may not be having the latest digital technology but with the available technology we can endeavor to enter the world of cinema through the world wide web (www) for global viewer ship.

Please explore the opportunities; in the internet where there is no limit to expansion and success. We have the talent but we have to see who can make history?


* Free Thinker wrote this article for The Sangai Express
This article was posted on June 22 , 2016.


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