If our industry could come up with the list of some of the best directors available right now, It isn’t really complete without director Mysskin’s name in it. His films have been quite an enthralling experience to all of us! Some of us have enjoyed watching them, Some of us have wondered about the immense filmmaking techniques involved in it. So, how would it be if Mysskin himself had answered to such questions? Read more to find out.
‘Most Samurai fights go for about only 3-4 strokes’
When Mysskin was asked on why his fights stand out from the rest of the fight sequences in tamil cinema, Mysskin said ‘I believe a protagonist while in a combat first assesses the place and takes a stance accordingly.The conventional idea of having fight sequences running for 5-10 minutes is quite illogical. An actual samurai fight goes for about only 3-4 strokes.’
Also taking the example of the fight sequence from his first film chithiram pesuthadi (2006), He said ‘One can see that my fight scene has only about 20% of action and rest is silence. This silence is what brings about an anticipation in the audience. The protagonist looks down in this scene because I wanted to establish his character in this scene where he curtails himself by looking down’.
‘They are the most Neglected People on the Roads’
On the presence of repetitive characters like transgenders, Blind men & beggars, He believes they are the most neglected people on the roads. There are many people like them to whom no one pays attention to. Mysskin feels it’s his responsibility as a filmmaker to be making people aware of their presence. In Fact he takes more effort into sketching their characters.
The Mysskin’s Leg Shot!
Mysskin points out the fact that all his films are a journey and that the protagonist in all his films mainly in the 3rd act does not really know where to go. He is in a very hasty state. Mysskin says ‘he wanted to capture this state of the protagonist and hence opted to capture the legs.’ This also has a very personal reason where Mysskin quotes his longing for watching people walk right from his childhood.
Another Mysskin Special!
All of us would’ve wondered the technique in his films where we are shown something in the frame for sometime and suddenly the camera focuses on something else that’s completely unrelated to the first subject on the frame. Mysskin says ‘this increases my audience’s participation in my films’. He believes that,when he does this, the audience want to look back at the initial subject and if they aren’t able to, they imagine it (which is active participation).
Why Long Takes?
He believes that one single shot feels more like a complete shot than a shot with a cut in it. Also in terms of the background music, he profoundly uses string compositions. On this he says ‘strings are an elongated version and are quite continuous which is also why I prefer taking long single shots in my films. I may not know the music, but I do know the tone and pace of the scene and demand accordingly from the music director.’
Lens are a Domain of the Filmmaker, not Cinematographer!
Mysskin personally believes that lens are a domain of the filmmaker and not of the cinematographer. Taking the example of a guy talking to a girl, Mysskin says ‘while conceiving this idea, I’m supposed to know the distance between the guy and the girl which could be any distance according to my vision of the scene. This is why I have a lens perspective while writing my script and my scripts are more like a shot division.’
‘I always go for flaws in my scenes’
Quoting the example of the famous climax portion of onayum aatukuttiyum (the monologue) where Mysskin explains the flashback. Mysskin said that he initially wrote about 12 pages of dialogues but couldn’t memorise them. He just came inside the frame without preparing anything and just started off with the dialogues. There were some points where he couldn’t remember the dialogue and struggled for it. These pauses which were actually flaws made the scene so real. He also quotes the example of a similar monologue scene in nandalala where the prostitute explains her story. This was a trolley shot where one could point out some shakes here and there. Mysskin says ‘this also was a flaw but conceived into a beautiful shot.’
Watch the full interview Here