If you have seen La La Land then you are not new to the concept of musicals and how they are shot. Basically the first song in the movie is 3 minutes and 50 seconds long which is a well choreographed take. The whole song takes place in one single shot. There are 3 departments in which the songs use a similar technique which are namely
Talking about Bollywood songs cinematography technique, all of them have same patterns. Right from Sheila Ki Jawaani from 2010 to the Break Up Song in 2016 all have a similar lighting style. Another thing which is found in almost all songs is the backlighting also called the lense flare. The set up does not change no matter what the location. The songs never look a part of the film’s narration, rather they look like an MTV song video. Now compared to close up shots there are more wide angle shots and a series of them in motion.
The main objective of choreography is to capture the dance on camera as an artistic portrayal of the form. There has to be unity and continuity in it as far as dance is concerned. On the contrary in most of the Bollywood songs it never about smooth transitions carried out after repetitive moments. The songs are focused on specific repetitive movements carried out after regular intervals. As far as the cinema medium is concerned the choreography should be according to the camera and performance should be in sync with camera moments. But in Bollywood, camera is used as a recording device were the lenses movement is there but performance is carried out without considering the camera position.
Now this is the most faulty part. Dance is an art form which is performed in relation to space and time. Our editors from the Bollywood Industry pay no heed to this rule. The editing is focused on few movements, there is no continuity in them and a lot of cuts are made halfway through the dance action, mostly according to the beats of the song.
Overall we are not picking up faults with everything that is wrong with Bollywood cinematography, we are only trying to make room for what can be done. The camera should support and sustain the performance of the artist and the editing should not be done with few shots presented as dance, we should see it in entirety. If you like our content you can keep coming back to amazing geek world. For more updates subscribe to us and let us know what you think in the comments section below !