Monday, 2 June 2014

Content over Form: The importance of storytelling

Kanu Behl will be travelling to the Festival de Cannes (Cannes International Film Festival) with his first film, ‘Titli’, which is being screened at the festival's Un Certain Regard section. At the festival, Behl will compete against 19 filmmakers from countries so diverse they can be only united by cinema — France, Israel, Spain, South Korea, among others.But it's taken Behl some 17 years to make his first film — if you count the years from intent to execution. Behl had this to say, “I had a rough goal in my head that I want to go to film school. I knew that it was a post-graduate course so I was more or less just biding my time.”

Behl watched different kinds of cinema, he realised one of his more important concerns as a filmmaker: "I have always believed in content over form. For me it has always been about getting to the bottom of things, trying to understand what I am really trying to say.”Titli can be described as a film about a man trying to escape from an oppressive brother, and he ends up becoming just like him, but what is the heart of the film? It's a film about circularity. About images passing on within a family and how we keep leaving imprints on each other without even realising. Titli is very simple in execution.

Kanu ends it by saying, “Titli pretty much begins where Udaan ends. It begins as a film about oppression but it’s a ruse in the film that it’s about a boy escaping. It’s there to begin the journey for you. But rather than just giving you the high of escape from oppression, Titli is really trying to understand where this oppression comes from.”


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