by Kishoo, Barkur
Mangaluru Oct 4: Two back-to-back Konkani films are the talk of the town these days. There are self proclaimed soothsayers predicting the “acche dins” and the critiques talking about the doomsdays of Konkani cinema.
With two supposed hits, some in the pipeline, and some more being set to launch, Konkani cinema is undergoing a transition, never foreseen. Unfortunately, I did not watch any of them so far, but was forced to read all the kudos and brickbats thrown at these films on various portals and social media.
A question then arises as to why any venture in Konkani is seen as a saviour of the language. At any gathering for the launching of a CD, or the releasing of a book, or a drama or musical nite, the guests are all praise for the person undertaking this venture, for her/his selfless love for Konkani and endless sacrifice for putting the product together. Thus, canvassing all Konkani-folks to support these noble acts by buying the product to save the language from the brink of extinction.
So much so, that recently a Konkani activist friend of mine went to the extent of saying that it is the 'duty' of the Konkani People to support Konkani movies that are being screened and pat the back of the producers.
The question still being - Who asked them to venture into this? Are they witless to pool in their hard earned money for the sake of language?
It's about the money, honey
Films in any other languages are purely commercial ventures - be it main stream or off beat. Naturally, the producers and the directors with right business acumen or those who know the pulse of the audience, are only able to bundle-up a product with the right ingredients and smile all the way to the banks.
No amount of critical acclaims or brickbats alter the commercial status of a film. Films like Golmaal, Happy New year and Grand Masti, which were battered ruthlessly by the critiques, successfully ventured into 100 Crores clubs.
Some low budget offbeat movies in Tamil catapulted yesteryears' small screen actor like Shivakarthikeyan into a Super star of today. Even a Thithi in Kannada for that matter, shattered all the box office predictions.
That, exactly is my point here. Konkani cinema has just started crawling. Leave the producers and directors alone. Mind you, they are not Konkani activists. Hault your criticisms and suggestions. Stop overwhelming promotions too. And for heaven's sake, stop 'aangavnyos' for the films' success.
Let them fall, let them pick themselves back up. Let them experiment, learn the business. No amount of love for a language can guarantee the success of a film, nor can a film resurrect a dying language, that is- if at all the language is dying.
For it is a purely commercial activity and only right business acumen can pack a viable film, and Konkani People are smart enough to choose to welcome or reject the product.
Konkani movies yesterday, Today and Tomorrow...