Mangaluru: St Aloysius Evening College discusses cinema's loneliness, solitude analytically


Media Release

Mangaluru, Aug 3: Cinema, which has a history of delving into the unfathomed depths of human solitude and showcasing them on the silver screen as a community experience, is now posed with a new challenge to cater to those audiences watching it in solitude. The IQAC and Department of Languages, St Aloysius Evening College, here, and Sanchi Foundation, Bengaluru, came together and conducted an analytical dialogue on this crucial topic of universal prominence on August 1.

The honoured panellists in the dialogue included Girish Kasaravalli who is not only a well known Indian film director in Kannada cinema but also one of the pioneers of Parallel Cinema. Known internationally for his works, Kasaravalli has garnered fourteen National Film Awards, including four Best Feature Films; Ghatashraddha (1977), Tabarana Kathe (1986), Thaayi Saheba (1997) and Dweepa (2002). In 2011, he was awarded Padma Shri, the fourth highest civilian award by the Government of India. A gold medalist from the Film and Television Institute of India, Pune, he has also won awards in the International Film Festivals held in Moscow, Jakarta, Germany, Cairo, Barcelona, Italy and Madrid. The other resource person in the dialogue was Anil Zankar who is a filmmaker, writer, film historian, teacher, media consultant and recipient of two national awards for writing. Having garnered nearly 40 years of experience in filmmaking, teaching and writing he has made 22 short films on social issues and institutions, bio-pics and corporate themes. He has also given lectures and taught courses at various prestigious institutions such as the Indian Institute of Advanced Studies in Shimla, FTII, NSD, NID, Whistling Woods International, NCPA, University of Pune, etc.

The dialogue was moderated efficiently by Abhayasimha who is a well-known film writer and director. A two-time national award winner, Abhaya Simha has also been decorated with the state award. He is an active member of the Sanchi Foundation and a distinguished alumnus of St Aloysius College, Mangaluru.

Context:
Technology is known to make islands out of human beings. But cinema, essentially a technology-enabled art form, continued to be a social event. Hence it was and is being screened in a 'theatre'. TV was a major challenge. But cinema could retain its distinction. Further challenges were tackled by being inclusive. And it continued to be a collective, social activity. However, the current predicament is compelling it to become an isolated experience.

Marketing people struggled for decades to sell multiple TV sets to a single household. But smartphones made it a reality. They have now become the new 'theatres or screens in our palms... holding the world in a fist! Now the pandemic, with its mandatory 'social distancing', has threatened the very 'social' aspect of the movie-watching experience.

Cinema has effectively perceived and portrayed the individual in society and has also thrown light on the lonely person in a crowd. At present, we seem to need a model where a viewer has to watch a movie as an isolated entity. This is a discussion at the conceptual level during these times of change... how cinema perceives the need and comes to terms with it.

The organizers are thrilled that a total of 1724 people (Facebook: 1067, YouTube: 547 & Zoom: 105) logged in and participated in the webinar.

Prakash Ferrao, Dinith, Harshith of SAEC and Omshivaprakash, Ismail N A M and the team from the Sanchi Foundation managed the technical aspects of the webinar.

The online event was streamed from St Aloysius Evening College, Mangaluru, with the resource persons joining in from Bengaluru and Pune. Fr Dionysius Vaz SJ, rector, St Aloysius College Institutions and Fr Dr Praveen Martis SJ, administrator have their messages while Dr Manohar V Serrao, the principal gave the welcome address. Dr Charles V Furtado, vice-principal/coordinator IQAC and Dr Mahalinga Bhat, coordinator of the webinar, SAEC, were present during the streaming.

  

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