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Subject: Re: _Elizabeth_ Influences?

On Fri, 19 Mar 1999 15:00:10-0800 wrote:

> Are the accusations against the current film
> _Elizabeth_--that the style derives from MTV--really
> common?  Can anyone refer me to an example in print?

Don Larsson answered:

>As others have noted, "MTV style" is a lazy description of anything
>that employs quick edits (oh, yes, and chicks and fire, as Beavis would
>note).  But ELIZABETH's style probably owes as much or more to Indian
>film influences (especially given that the director is Indian himself).

Shekhar Kapur spent years in England, where he worked in an office before
he started acting and then directing in the Bombay film industry (MASOOM,
MR. INDIA, JOSHILAY). So his influences are going to be more "inter-
national" than those on a director of purely local Hindi films who might make
a big-budget Western film for the first time. I saw all sorts of Hindi film
conventions in ELIZABETH--part of the pleasure I got from the movie. But
as to MTV and V Channel and other trendy youth-oriented television in India,
it seems likely that the acceptance of nonlinear narrative and imaginative (or
not) editing by Indian audiences has freed directors of popular films to break
with show-all/tell-all narrative construction.

Don't assume you can't see Hindi music videos yourself. If you live in the
US in an area where there is a sizable Indian population, your cable system
may offer programming in Hindi, Punjabi, Malayalam, and other languages. It
won't show up in TV listings, and it may not be on the cable program guide,
but a little surfing (try Sunday morning) is useful. Or ask Indians you know
or run into. In the Chicago area TCI offers batches of this programming;
MediaOne has late Saturday and 6PM Sunday blocks; Channel 23 (not on
cable) has other stuff, and there's more on local access. In other cities the
International Channel carries news and music. I've noticed a generation break
here--some programs have "new" songs (e.g., music videos and late 90s
movie dances) while others have movie song-dance numbers from the 50s-
80s.