Motion Picture – it can be a great tool to inspire and shape the thinking of the masses, yet the harsh reality of the so-called modern society is that, most of the films that are made today have not the slightest bit of nutritious food for the mind, rather it is all a cocktail of various cheap stimuli. They can, if they want, make movies of great taste, capable of getting inside the head, or rather the heart of the people, and make them feel sentiments of utter significance both in the paths of individual and social progress, yet they choose not to. And their excuse for not making such movies is that, they do not sell – their excuse is that, people won’t go to the theaters to watch an inspirational and thought-provoking movie – their excuse is that, people want entertainment, not philosophy!
However, regardless of such petty notion about film-making, there are some true filmmakers, who give their heart and soul to make movies that are most incredible in their ability to touch the heart as well as the brains of the masses. A Film has the potential to kindle such a spark of inspiration in an individual that it can alter the course of human progress. Today the thinker whom you know as Naskar, had his inspiration from not only the world of science and philosophy, but also from the world of motion-picture. Back in the years, when I was in the pursuit of recognizing my real self, movies did not only fuel that pursuit to some extent, but also, they taught me to speak languages other than my mother-tongue Bengali, such as English, Telugu and others.
The reality is, films that are made solely to sell, instead of touching the conscience of the masses, feed on the ignorance and confusions of the people, on the other hand, films that are created to both inspire and entertain at a deeper level, are more likely to have fewer audience. But remember this, my dear film-maker, the few viewers that your film receives because of being more inspiring and less entertaining, have the potential to shape their society in the line of the idea conveyed by you. Now you choose, my dear friend, what kind of society you wish to have – a society full of dumb manikins who love nothing more than pure, pedestrian entertainment, or a society where the very term entertainment is defined by the message conveyed by your film. A film with no message, is a film of no value in the society of civilized humans. You can tell the level of intellect and advancement of a nation, by the kind of movies its citizens watch.
A society does not stay dumb because of its dumb co-called political leaders, but because of those large number of creative individuals with great public outreach, such as film-makers, actors, music composers, singers, and others, who are more interested in increasing their fan-following than shaping the mind of their preexisting followers with their work towards a progressive future. There is a difference between healthy entertainment and cheap, pedestrian entertainment. And unfortunately, most of today’s film-makers are inclined towards the later instead of the former, especially in the developing countries. In fact, to these directors, the only entertainment that there is, is the pedestrian entertainment – and as for the healthy entertainment, it is apparently a myth that is less likely to receive a broader audience.
So, now let’s try to understand, what the heck is healthy entertainment! Healthy entertainment is a beautiful blend of stimuli that can connect with the viewer at a sentimental level, then sow the seeds of a certain idea or feed the mind with inspiration and courage. In short, healthy entertainment does not evoke raw emotions in the mind of a viewer only to make them wreak havoc, rather it guides those emotions in a healthy direction. This leads to not only an entertained viewer, but also an inspired soul. And that should be the purpose of film-making, and indeed the entire entertainment industry, rather than feeding the general population with garbage. Remember – Entertain, but also, give the viewer something to think about. Without an underlying message to think about, there is no difference between going to the movie-theater and going to the bar.
(Simultaneously Published on Goodreads.)