I interviewed Goodloe Byron earlier this week regarding his role in A Public Ransom and given below is an excerpt from our online conversation.
What was your approach to your role as Bryant in the film?
I have been familiar with this story of Pablo’s since I was sixteen, I think, though he didn’t write the one thousand word short story until nearly a decade later. But I remember the spot where he discussed the idea of A Public Ransom very well, as it is a few blocks from my current apartment. But there were never any characters, there was just the idea of some sinister creep who kidnaps people and ransoms them out to the public via graffiti.
So years later when Pablo said that we were going to make a movie out of the thing, I already had an idea in mind—not for the character per se, but of the gravitas of such an act. Pablo was taking a different tact with the script, so that the focus would be on the person who finds the ransom rather than the kidnapper. As it was written the character of Bryant (the creep) is more of a tool to investigate the primary character. Steven (the “protagonist”, for lack of a better word) is full of energy and talk, but at the core he is just very empty and inert. The Bryant character was written to have an energy and vivaciousness to match this, but to be someone who just had more “follow-through”.
But originally, the story he told me when we were sixteen, was about the kidnapper, a kind of Leopold-Loeb figure, except without the trace of innocence that marked those two little monsters. So I wanted to play it this later way. I wanted to strip out all of the energy, and really much of the familiarity of Bryant, and turn him from a counterpoint to Steven, make him a monster that was sitting just off to the side of the film. Continue reading “In Conversation with Goodloe Byron”
I interviewed Carlyle Edwards earlier this week regarding his role in A Public Ransom and given below is an excerpt from our online conversation.
What was your approach and preparations for the role?
I suppose I should have had more specific preparations for playing the role, as this was my first time in front of a camera—but then, I was rather type-cast, in a way, so that helped a lot, haha. The role was to be, though the central character, basically the actual villain of the piece—the arc of the character best described as someone who goes from “very, very disagreeable to absolutely reprehensible” during the course of the film’s run time. Basically, once I settled in to portraying someone who was, for all intents and purposes, ME, circa the year 2007, it was just a matter of memorizing the dense runs of dialogue (often telephone monologue) and the blocking. Even the theatricality the role called for—Steven was basically less a human-being than a “perpetual performance, a put on”—was more or less my normal way of speaking and moving. It’s funny, because reviewers point out the “theater style” of the performance (often in a derogatory way) but even in addition to it being what the role specifically calls for…that’s just how I talk and move! Haha. I sometimes don’t know what to make of the critiques, it’s made me rather self-conscious, truth be told. I suppose the short answer is, I found a way to enjoy being an out-and-out asshole (some of it is gallows humor, true, but much of it has to be full on “Steven is not someone any one will like”) and then just ran with it, decided to take it as far as I could without (though some would argue I did) hamming it up, too much.Continue reading “In Conversation with Carlyle Edwards”
I interviewed Helen Bonaparte earlier this week regarding her role in A Public Ransom and given below is an excerpt from our online conversation.
How did you approach the role?
To be honest, I didn’t “approach” it in any particular way. I kind of just showed up with my lines memorized, and we hashed out the delivery during rehearsals. It was rather easy for me – given that I live with the writer, and he knows me very well.He essentially just wrote the character based on me from the outset. I feel somewhat like a fraud since I didn’t have to do too much “acting” per se, except perhaps in the last scene, where the director wanted me to stand still to illustrate Steven’s flailing about behind me. It was difficult to stand still, in fact. What I really wanted Rene to do was to beat the shit out of Steven, which is what I would probably really do in the situation, had it happened to me. At least I got to slap him.Continue reading “In Conversation with Helen Bonaparte”
Language : Hindi | Running Time : 95 Minutes | Director : Saad Khan
The most telling scene which depicts everything that depicts everything good and bad about Saad Khan‘s “Station”, reportedly Bangalore’s first Hindi film, is one pivotal moment in a waiting room of a railway station. There are three people, Fani Bhushan(Hardik Sha), Arihant a.k.a Ari(Sameer Kevin Roy) and Bhaktiyar(Siddhanth KS) arguing. Fani Bhushan leaves the scene to go to the restroom and like in well directed and produced school plays or theater plays, the scene “exits” and we are shown the exit through an overhead shot. The set looks to be very theatrical too and Fani Bhushan’s exit and the camera moving to the restroom are all take away’s from a good play. Station, a feature film, gives away cinematic impact and suffers a hangover pertinent to a production fit for stage. This scene starts a set of twists and turns and the scene that’s supposed to elevate the cinematic proceedings but rather than elevate, it diffuses what little cinematic impact it had till then and loses itself to become a theater experience being documented shoddily.Continue reading “Station (2014) Movie Review: Thrills Deserted”
North Bank is an indie Assamese feature film that is in its final phase of completion. This article talks about my journey as a filmmaker so far and how North Bank managed to get conceived and developed.
How did it all start
I used to watch a lot of Hollywood films since childhood but I was not sure that I’d get into filmmaking until 2009, when I somehow got interested in short films. One day I saw a film called Ivan’s Childhood by Andrei Tarkovsky and 3 months later I made my first short film. I continued making short films and eventually I wanted to make something bigger. It was in 2011 just before passing out from my college, when I first attempted to make a feature out a couple of interconnected short storylines as then I was very much inspired by Alejandro Gonzalej Inarritu. However, then my college authorities wouldn’t allow me to do so. That prompted me to make another short film.Continue reading “All About ‘North Bank’: An Independent Assamese Feature Film”
Less than a month ago, I went to watch Dhoom 3with a friend on the night of 24th December for a 11:30 show in a suburban Mumbai multiplex. We had decided to catch the film instead of spending a bomb in some club, primarily because we thought the movie would be good fun. Frankly, I didn’t expect Dhoom 3 to be anything else besides being entertaining. I am someone who thoroughly enjoyed the previous installments of the franchise, though both of them had barely much storyline to boast of. I had committed a similar blasphemy when I got so curious about Chennai Express – it broke 3 Idiots’ record and I thought there would some merit in the film to do so. But man, both of them were so lame that they are insults to their own genre. I am someone who enjoyed Rajiv Rai films tremendously; I still swear by Mohra, Tridev & Gupt – Dhoom 3 and Chennai Express are films which fail even the word ‘entertainment’.Continue reading “No Golden Age for Bollywood”
Last year around the same time when I was sitting down and penning down my thoughts on the recap of MAM’s 1st year, everything looked so nostalgic. The nostalgia still remains 2 years into the journey, but there’s also the eagerness to move forward and to branch out into frontiers not yet fully explored.Continue reading “MAM is now 2 Years ‘Young’: The Journey Continues”