Sunday, July 26, 2009


Two days back I watched a film, which was widely talked about, made by well experienced team. The director has been making good and critically well received films for past decade. As I am one of his admirers and also one of my good friends have starred in the film, I was anxious to watch it.

Though the film was well made and presented, I was not able to remember anything about the film, at all, after I came out of the theatre. And I was wondering why.

After giving it a thought for sometime, what I could conclude was that, apart from bad script. poorly written dialogues, and hell of a lot of flicked scenes from foreign language films,

there is no pause.

A pause can be in between the scenes (transitions), can be in between dialogues, can be between first half and second half of the film (thats what we call interval, we relax and start to munch on what happened in the first half, and try to predict what would be 2nd half.)

As human beings, our brain does not respond instantly to grab what just happened before your eyes. It takes couple of fractions of seconds, then it takes another couple of fractions of seconds to respond to it, and another fractions to conclude on the logic of whatever happened.

Eyes see, Ears hear, then taken in to the brain, and the brain responds. And then only we say 'wow' or 'shit'.

So when you are making film, this factor has to be seriously taken into account. There has to be pauses here and there where ever required between the dialogues, between the scenes. Good scripts with no pauses, may do well, but audience will never remember anything when they come out. Because, before their brain could memorise something, the next thing happens and keeps on going, so audience will remember only bits and pieces of the film, that too vaguely.

thats what happened in this film which i watched 2 days ago. The director or editor stopped leaving pauses, all the artists stopped pausing between the dialogues. They might as well read it as fast as they can.
Especially when the Artists deliver the dialogues.
When there is no pause between the lines, then Artists seem to respond with each other in a pre-planned way.
In real life, when we talk with each other, we do not plan, so when somebody asks a question, we think for a moment, we manage that with 'ya' mmm' 'no' 'I mean' etc and then we phrase inside and reply. The speed at which respond comes out varies from person to person. But still, there is a pause. Thats natural way of communicating to one another.
But in our films (Tamil), we seem to neglect this fact.
Artists just want to deliver what ever the line is and they do not bother about the pauses. Even if actors make pauses, the editor feels LAG and he deliberately removes it saying it will bore the audience.
There is a very bad word being circulated among the Tamil film industry - LAG. Nobody wants to see anything silent, there has to be some music going on in the back, or some sound fx. Otherwise there should be contiuous dialogues. Rest are all LAG.
They dont realize one thing is that the whole damn film is a LAG, because of this.
They also think that holywood does the same thing. But in reality no other film industry does it
Holywood films have a graph. Even in block buster action films. Whenever high speed action takes place, the very next scene is established in a deliberate way, silently, thereby relieving the audience and preparing them again for the next action sequence. None of the artists spoke their dialogues continuously. they paused, turned their head, looked through the window, etc.
Any directors who knows how to handle pauses and actors who knows where to pause between the dialogues really shine.
Ofcourse its apart from the scripts, directors are handling and expressions actors are making.

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