Sunday, September 2, 2007

Watching English Patient in Hyderabad

I posted, a few months ago, about my experience reading The English Patient and then watching the film.

I've since re-read the novel a few times, and had the opportunity to see the film again, as part of U-Hyd's weekly "cinema club" series.

I wasn't the biggest fan of the movie adaptation, but I wanted to see it again for a few reasons. First because I had invited my acting class to come with me, and I was interested to know what they thought of it. Second because I was curious to know how an Indian audience would react to the movie. And lastly, because again of the book. Because I loved the book, I sat through the film. ^__^

The auditorium was about half-full; this was probably not the most popular of the cinema club's offerings. The movie itself was split onto three DVDs, which were loaded into a laptop and played through a projector; the DVDs seemed to be copies of a copy of a bootleg, and both the picture and the sound were grainy. My poor students, who are still learning English, were lost amidst the fuzzy dialogue, and so I whispered explanations when necessary.

The entire audience laughed and hooted at all the sex. I suppose I had expected that. They also laughed every time Naveen Andrews appeared onscreen. I guess I hadn't expected that. I wondered if they were laughing at Kip's actions within the film, or laughing at Hollywood's reinterpretation of an Indian character.

I think my students were bored by the film, because they kept asking me how much longer it would be. ^__^ I actually found it more interesting the second time, because I was able to spot nuances that I hadn't noticed before. But... for an unfamiliar audience, on a blurry screen, with indiscriminate audio... yeah, maybe not the best.

The next film in the series will be Munich. I wonder if I will be able to convince my class to go. ^__^

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