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Hindi Films Eclipse Regional Films

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By: Arya Aiyappan
Wednesday, January 03, 2007
Indian movies reflect the collective consciousness of the community. They portray the cultural ethos of our multicultural society. In India Hindi films and regional films have a place of their own. While Bollywood churns out many movies throughout the year, regional films do come up with their share of good movies of artistic value. The question that has gripped the Indian movie industry is whether Bollywood has overshadowed the regional film industries to an extent of complete negligence at the film festivals.

Hindi films and regional films are related to different concerns. While the former is more in synchronization with the artistic elements of style and marketing, the latter is more content and thematic oriented. Bollywood gives predominance to glamour and style, whereas regional movies in Malayalam and likewise are inclined to narratives, which convey a wide range of meanings, though there are exceptions to this rule.

IFFI 2006 was replete with many controversies regarding the lack of adequate representation of South Indian movies, irreverence to the legend of yesteryears Rajkumar, an out-and-out Bollywod star-studded inaugural show with the hot stars Salman Khan, Priyanka Chopra, and Bipasha dancing to the latest tunes, and the theme song devoid of any images representing the South Indian film industry. Prominent personalities like T V Chandran (Malayalam) and Girish Kasaravalli (Kannada) were quite critical in their opinion regarding IFFI. Ace Malayalam director T.V. Chandran protested vehemently, "Hindi movies are not entire India. Malayalam and Bengali films are much better in quality but still importance is given to third-rate Hindi movies."

While hindi films do come up with novel themes of great import, it often tends to lack the sobriety and solemnity that regional films tend to impart. While regional films experiment with off beat themes in tune with the times and the context, Hindi films also explore new arenas but often lack the subtleness and suaveness. Of late some artistic films have caught up with the trend of giving prominence to content over style. Hindi films and stars are given more hype and the remuneration is astoundingly big enough to even have repercussions in other industries.

Whatever said and done the skirmishes between the regional films and Hindi films are bound to continue as long as there is a constant clash of interests.

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