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Mini P Thomas
Mini P Thomas


Film festivals, microcosms of life

a-man-called-ove Scene from the movie A man called Ove

After standing in a long serpentine queue for more than half an hour, only to be told that the show is houseful, you have three options left:

a) Pick an argument with the volunteer, knowing well that you are not getting anywhere.

b) Stay there, hoping and praying that someone who has managed to get into the theatre will have a medical emergency, forcing him to leave and the volunteer will let you in.

c)Watch some other movie.

As someone who has been through the pain of seeing the 'houseful board' hanging at the entry gate of cinema halls many times, I'd like to share some pearls of wisdom with you. Don't be heartbroken, when things go wrong. Choose option c. Relax and move on.

However, there is another option that I came across at the Bengaluru International Film Fest held recently. As the houseful board was put up a few minutes before the screening of A Man Called Ove, I decided to drown my disappointment in a cup of coffee. While coming back, I got lost and was led to the same theatre where A Man Called Ove was being screened. I realised it only when I saw Rolf Lassgard on screen. There was no volunteer at the entry gate to stop me. As I made sense of what was happening, a volunteer appeared from nowhere and offered me a seat. The seats next to mine were also vacant.

I looked at the screen. Ove, the grumpy, old widower with his idiosyncrasies, is still in his younger days. His wife Sonja has just told him that he was going to be a father. Their joy doesn't last long. The couple, very much in love with each other meets with an accident, that leaves Sonja paralysed and the baby in her womb dead.

A Man Called Ove is a romantic comedy with a streak of tragedy in it. The story of the man who is determined to commit suicide after he loses his wife to cancer is based on a Swedish novel of the same title that sold around 2.8 million copies worldwide. The couple in After the Stormwas different. Yoshiko Shinoda, an ageing mother in this Japanese movie carries inside her a whole spectrum of feelings and emotions ranging from love to a sense of freedom, when her husband passes away. She has no qualms in telling her son that she feels more liberated now. When a butterfly flies around her, reminding her of her dead husband, she shoos it away saying she has moved on with her life.

The movie is set in the backdrop of an anticipated storm. A storm rages in the mind of Ryota, Shinoda's son too. Ryota wants to make it big as a writer. He works as a private detective, hoping it will help him in his creative writing career. Ryota cuts a sorry figure as his wife abandons him and goes with another man and he finds it hard to pay child support, without which he can't see his son. The story of people caught in the labyrinths of relationship won a nomination in the 2016 Cannes Film Festival.

One Man and His Cow, the inaugural movie is about an Algerian farmer who goes to the Paris International Agricultural Show with his cow Jacqueline. Though it is amusing to see a cow, who is a real beauty, on screen, the plot of this movie seems too predictable.

I knew the man and his cow would make headlines and that he would be surrounded by women. I know many villagers who shot to instant stardom after their cows won prizes in village-level competitions. Our man's story is pretty much like theirs. Basically, except for those occasional flashes of genius, the story lacks the surprise element. The plot didn't impress me much maybe because I had a rural upbringing and the things featured in this movie were part of my everyday life. I may be an exception. You, urban folks, may still find them interesting. 

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Topics : #movies

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