In the visual effects we trust: occasional comfort

Almost all major movies release dates have been rescheduled. Not in days or weeks, but in months, and in one case, even in a year! The reason is something he had never heard or imagined before! Special Effects also known as VFX!

Our filmmakers cannot imagine a movie without the visual effects. The damned story and script. Building a movie with a reasonable story and weaving characters around it is a thing of the past. No wonder the movies flop left, right, and center. The industry strongly believes in the “Have star, will travel” philosophy. Sadly, what’s emerging is that the stars the filmmakers rely on have outgrown their best before history.

Yes, the stars have made it to the movies and have been successful a lot. In my life, I’ve seen two superstars, Rajesh Khanna and Amitabh Bachchan, both delivering multiple hits in a row. They could do that because their films were supported by the storytelling and the music that you brought home from the cinema.

After that, there were also big stars like Dharmendra, Rajendra Kumar, Manoj Kumar, Jitendra and Rishi Kapoor. They have all delivered more hits than failures. And when it was time they took a break. They did not impose themselves on the public. They are back in roles that are more appropriate for their age.

Movie stars today refuse to come to terms with their age. They want to continue doing youthful roles, the kind they made their mark in. But, the 50-plus-year-old Shah Rukh cannot be accepted to play the same darling boy, and Salman cannot be as effective in action films as some were years ago. It’s the same for others.

Actors insist on sticking with roles that guarantee their stardom, so producers turn to visual effects for a way out. Visual effects work on their aging faces and bodies to make them look younger. The rest of the movie may or may not need visual effects, but that’s not essential. On the computer, experts can do this, erasing signs of aging from the star’s face, strengthening his muscles, or even making him make two copies, as in Shahrukh’s movie, ‘Fan’.

The legendary films had wide-ranging special effects and were all achieved within the studio floors with the help of the magic of the cinematographer. How do you think viewers can watch Bajrangbali flying or Lord Shiva floating in the blue sky? Viewers welcomed all this with whistles and endless applause!

Or how did they manage to turn a single arrow of Lord Ram into a hundred in the battle against Ravan? Didn’t the films in epics like “The Mahabharata” and “The Ramayana” show more special effects, and more convincingly, than the tabs are now producing?

Can a director make a double-role movie today without special effects? I don’t think he even thinks about it! And the belief that films with dual roles appeared a long time ago and provided more excitement to the audience.

Remember my first movie of its kind was “Abrady Kaun?” From Bimal Roy. Next was, of course, Shakti Samantha’s “China Town” in which Shammi Kapoor played two roles; It inspired movies like ‘Don’ and a few others.

A lot of movies have been released lately with mainly visual effects as the main attraction, they cost huge sums but failed with the audience. Increasingly, more filmmakers are spending more years working on special effects than they do shooting a movie. Is he working? number!

However, for everything, from credit titles to animal scenes, the maker now relies on special effects. Permits must be obtained for films that contain animals, so the scenes that include them must be created with the help of visual effects. This is not required for the rest of the movie. A famous director once said that a movie was already shot on the editing table. Today’s makers seem to think a computer desk can work just as effectively.

They have become very dependent on special effects. Not only is this expensive, but also time consuming. If one thinks about it, the mere practice of making the hero look young adds to the cost by more than Rs crore! However, the appearance of the younger hero does not convince the viewer and does not make the film work.

The latest release, “Brahmastra”, was all about special effects. The film took seven years for VFX, which was completed just a day before its release. The costs were escalating so dramatically that a visual effects company (VFX) was brought in as producer and given a revenue share in lieu of the film’s bill.

When I saw the remake of the south in Hindi, I enjoyed it. When I saw the original version of the remake, I liked it even more. So far, Hindi films have escaped any special effects I’ve worked on. After “Baahubali,” though, there has been a regular stream of Southern dubbed movies released in Indian circles, all loaded with special effects. To say the least, their special effects are super.

There were comparisons and Hindi films appeared inferior to recent southern films – “RRR”, “KGF: Chapter 2”, “Ponniyin Selvan-1” and “Kantara”. Against that, we have films like Shamshera, Runway 34, Samrat Prithviraj, Brahmastra, Ram Setu, and so on, which have used visual effects extensively, but to no avail. Whatever the reason. (There has also been talk of VFX studios taking Hollywood-rejected VFX footage and stuffing it into movies here!)

Perhaps the filmmakers focused on the causes. Now the big filmmakers, who have been relying on special effects for their films, have all decided to postpone release dates, and if they do come up, they are unhappy with the results.

‘Adi Purush’ was trolled after the teaser that the movie’s release was delayed was released. The song “Laal Singh Chaddha” has been delayed several times. The same was the case with “Saaho”. Rajnikanth’s ‘2.0’ has been delayed for two years and director Shankar has been sued by VFX!

The release of ‘Tiger 3’ has now been postponed to the next Diwali. Hrithik Roshan-starrer ‘Fighter’, which was scheduled for Republic Day 2023, has been delayed for exactly one year and will now be released in the week of Republic Day in 2024.

Visual effects are not a magic wand that can play a movie. Without a story, in fact, nothing works, be it the stars, the music, or the shows (which today’s critics used to praise). Visual effects are no substitute for creativity. The manager was once called the captain of the ship. The visual effects are now guiding the ship.


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