Thursday, 23 March, 2023

Reviving film industry

Reviving film industry

Film is a popular source of entertainment with a unique power to dazzle and captivate us like nothing else can. It is, however, much more than simply an entertainment. Film holds immense sway over the way we think, and therefore, has the capacity to act as a vehicle for social change. As Hollywood director Martin Scorsese once said that movies touch our hearts and awaken our vision, and change the way we see things.

In this light we appreciate Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s appeal to filmmakers to contribute to social reforms by making life-oriented quality movies. Cinemas can play a crucial role in raising public awareness. But sadly, a majority of the contemporary Bangladeshi films conveys no constructive social message. Instead, the producers and directors only pursue commercial aims and have no qualms about airing violence and harmful themes. In doing so, they are contributing to social degradation.

In its long and chequered history, the Bangladeshi film industry Dallywood produced many social and cultural shaping movies, mostly in the 90s. But the heyday came to an end around the beginning of 21st century when a section of unscrupulous filmmakers inflicted indecency in our movies. They brought much infamy upon our cinemas, demeaning Bangla cinema as not something to watch with families. Their lust for producing sensual movies drove audience away from cinema halls, cornered genuine actors, and thus effectively sucked life out of the industry.

Therefore, the situation calls for greater sincerity on the part of film professionals, not only for changing the society for the better but also for their own survival. The censor board should also play a strict role in streamlining the film industry. Many films, films in name only, are getting censor board approval. If the censor board was strict enough, production of low quality and indecent films could be stopped; and then directors would strive for excellence.

However, the issue of raising public awareness through films should not be left entirely to market forces. The government should invest more in making movies with constructive social messages.