March 15, 2010

SRK chooses 'mediocre' films: 'MNIK' editor

Noted film editor Deepa Bhatia, whose latest work includes My Name Is Khan, says Bollywood superstar SRK chooses to act in "mediocre" films despite being a gifted actor.

Deepa, who has been awarded for editing films like Aamir Khan's Tare Zameen Par and Rock On!!, said it was a discovery for her to see the real actor in Shah Rukh while editing My Name Is Khan.

"Honestly I am no SRK fan but then he was so sincere in MNIK which was amazing to see. It was a discovery for me to find the actor in Shah Rukh Khan. I fail to understand why he chooses to act in mediocre film," Deepa told PTI.

"I don't understand the reason behind it. Whether he is just not interested or there is something else because he has also given some spectacular performances in films Chak De! India and Swades," she added.

Deepa, wife of writer-actor Amol Gupte, said that the filmmakers today have finally started to wake up to the tool of editing which puts the heart of the film at the right place.

"Filmmakers have started to understand how powerful editing can be. While we were editing MNIK, I remember Karan (Johar) telling me that he realised how a film can be totally rewritten with smart editing," Deepa said.

The Rock On!! editor said that today's film watching audience is constantly evolving and does not settle for something substandard. And that is why she has chosen a variety of films to be shown on UTV world movies as she is the 'Editor of the Month' for the channel.

On Deepa's recommendation, the channel will be showing four films including Machuka, a movie from Chile on the history and politics of the country through the eyes of children; Twin Sisters, a tale of two sisters brought up in different environment and coping up during the Nazi period; Cousin, cousine, a French film about two cousins falling in love with each other despite being married to different partners and 8 Women, a murder mystery involving eight women.

"These films which I have chosen, depict different stories. The most interesting factor is their presentation. There is so much of experimentation happening across the world. For example 8 Women is such a different genre which is a musical-comedy-murder-mystery," she said.

Deepa, who has also cut films like Maine Gandhi Ko Nahin Mara and Hazar Chaurasi Ki Maa, said that the new breed of filmmakers in India are trying to bring the same kind of experimentation which is essential for young Indians gorging on video games.

"This generation which lives on X-Box and play stations is being greatly affected by the gaming culture. The games today are much stylised, snappy versions of movies. They also have a hero, a villain and a mission. You need an intelligently made and stylised films to capture this new generation," Deepa said.


Caulfield said...

I thought the editing of MNIK wasn't very good. There were some flaws.

"While we were editing MNIK, I remember Karan (Johar) telling me that he realised how a film can be totally rewritten with smart editing," Deepa said."

Apart from those flaws, I did not like the non-linear screenplay of the film, don't know if the screenplay was written again on the editing table and made non-linear.

Pardesi said...

IMHO the editing of MNIK kept our interest in the film. It was clear that the Mandira/Khan track was the more involving one, and by bringing us back to it time and again, not only was the lead actress not sidelined after half the film, but the reason for the journey was told based on the relationship of the couple.

As for Deepa's comment about a good actor who chooses mediocre films, I fully agree. That is why SRK has only seldom risen to his full potential. His acting is what lifts most of his films, rather than enhancing an already good product.

Caulfield said...

I thought there were some technical errors like in the scene where SRK and Sam play the game of finding out the names of animals from the pool of letters, the POV shots did not match SRK's face movement.

Minnie said...

In my opinion, there could have been more crisper editing in the second half of MNIK...the whole hum honge kamyaab scene in the church should have been scissored mercilessly...ditto with some of the flood shots!

I completely agree with her though on SRK's choice of films...they are pretty mediocre and he lifts them with his excellent performance, charm and sheer energy. I've always felt its the exact opposite with Aamir Khan. He chooses excellent films which make his good performance look outstanding!

The Illusionist said...

Hmm.. i think it is the other way around IMHO...

Mediocre movies select SRK and only SRK :)

Pardesi said...

Minnie - yes, I agree that the second half dragged the film down. But once you write that it is not a fix that editing can handle. The only way would be to scrap all of the bits in Georgia and somehow engineer a meeting with the president.

The issue Cauli had was with the non-linear narrative. Did you find that worrisome too

Minnie said...


I agree with you...the issues of the second half were more at the scripting level than at the editing stage.

I actually found the non-linear narrative quite interesting and felt that it relieved the heavy tenor of the movie in the second half.

@Illusionist: Maybe directors want their mediocre movies to be elevated by SRK's acting and charisma? After all, Aamir with his non-existent charm would hardly be able to do that :-)

The Illusionist said...

@Minnie - i understand why Karan Johar wanted SRK for KANK. Thanks for the clarification =))

Minnie said...

I'll gladly agree with you on that one :-)
After all, I'm SRK's fan, not Johar's! I want to see him in outstanding movies which push his boundaries as an actor. If its Johar who helps him do that, great ! If not, even better !!

PintoAlberto said...

Past work is not always a reflection of the future. Ashutosh Gowarikar's first film was NOT Lagaan! Having said that Anubhav Sinha has a mixed record. His first, Tum Bin is rated very highly, but it is not an action film, rather a romance. Dus was an actioner and OK, though the action parts were well done. Tathastu I have not seen. Cash was a debacle. But the story goes that it was mired in a fight between the producers and had to be released virtually unedited after a lawsuit.

Whether Anubhav can do justice to or not, only time will tell. The name that does seem to have credentials is the cinematographer Ueli Steiger - he was associated with many films including The Day After Tomorrow, 10,000 BC - so the filming and effects mixing could be decent.

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