‘Filmmaking is confronting a bear in a dark jungle ’ – Aadish Keluskar

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Aadish-KeluskarTell us about your journey into filmmaking.

There was no journey as such. Only a series of accidents. Some I walked into, some I was pulled into, some I was pushed into. Filmmaking, to me, is confronting a bear in a dark jungle with bare hands. Cannot put the journey into perspective till the bear is around.

You have talked about filmmaking being an exploration of expression. Could you elaborate on this?

To me, only expressing oneself, results in a temporary relief for the expresser and a definite effect for the receiver. Only exploring, results in personal freedom for the explorer and a distant effect on the explored. I do not know what one means by an artistic activity. I only feel that filmmaking is a medium which gives the freedom to express and explore at the same time. The distinctions of self and other, maker and audience become faint. Film gets made through us, not by us, is what I feel.

The characters in your films are caught in intense moments of psychological excavations. What relation does this technique hold with the process of exploring the themes you choose?

Excavating in psyche seems to have a parallel in excavating space. I do not decide any theme beforehand. To me, that kills the scope of rhythms. Once I start mining those up, themes and characters spring up. Neither the themes, nor the characters make any fuss about what they are. I do not believe in judging them either. Probably, that is why the intensity is felt. Because the characters and themes seem responsible for everything but answerable to nobody, including myself.

How does your work ascribe to contemporary politics? Do you think filmmakers can or should dissociate themselves from the political tenor of the times?

Politics, to me, is coding for identity through power. Control seems to be its ultimate objective which is inherent in human mind.

From parliament, offices to schools and homes, politics exists everywhere in all of us. No matter what position in which field we are, we activate, participate and tolerate this coding.

I do not know what I can or should, so I cannot say anything about what filmmakers can or should. I only feel that disassociating oneself from the political tenor of the times is a strong statement on the political tenor of the times, only if done through reflection and not through fear or apathy.

Indrani Mukherjee

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