Variety can be a double edged sword : it can create benchmarks that surpass the old order, yield to finer craftsmanship, reimburse fresh outlooks of discerning viewers or create, quite simply, a tradition of art that takes nothing for granted. But one shuffle on the wrong side of creative thinking and the prototype of repetitive content, no matter how noble, technically superior or earnest, can feel like rummaging through hay in a stack.
In contemporary times, the explosion of meritorious works comes with the standard, patented idea that the same successful formula can be emulated again and again. There lies the tightrope walk that creators and frontrunners – in terms of writers, actors, directors, producers, cinematographers and the whole crew per se- have to steadfastly commit to. In the past twelve months, they managed to rise above the herd in many ways and narratives of change were part of the mainstream.
The shows and films that I write about here as part of the 2018 tableau are not restricted strictly to those released in the signature year but the many which I had the privilege to watch for the first time. Hence, the mishmash of genres and distinct moods pointed to one thing, really : that approximations of real life are the most sustained and dynamic in these two omnipotent mediums.
The following, hence, are my written encapsulations of works across mediums, nations and possibilities that graced my viewing experiences in 2018 besides the one I have already written about earlier on this blog. Variety and a commitment to changing the scenario prevailed in all cases and the universality of the works presented appealed to a more enlightened viewer who drew parallels with the world around and was informed by greater social churnings.
This will be a series so I will accommodate the vast array of the filmmaking spectrum in lists.
For sceptics who may be asking how I found the time to watch so much on offer, well I utilized the lean period post my M Phil semesters to ring in the true spirit of a cinephile and thanks to streaming platforms, I could juggle my writing, academics and other varied interests with the one that has always stood out for me. Watching creatively ripe minds tune into the panorama of human endeavours and bring them to fruition on the two prominent mediums of television and cinema is the most humbling and enlightening enterprise. For me, it was like a gateway had opened. Hence from the next post, I will write about the works that greatly mattered to me.