By: Anas Abdullahi
Many entities in our daily life have duel functions. While a good food should satisfy and entertain, a good movie should inform and entertain. There’s actually more to good movies than most people can think of. Why? Judgment comes from personal taste. However, there are some essential elements, visible and invisible, that a movie is vulnerable without.
A good movie should have bold, distinct and well-defined characters that, while watching the movie, will make us emphasize and care about what happens to them throughout their cinematic journey. Characters that captivated our emotions that got us so involved making us feel like we are actually undergoing the experience. This allows the audience to converse on who are the good guys and who are the bad guys and to perpetuate the film with our imaginations. While heroes should inspire us, villains should make us jump into the screen. You could see how we were so concerned about Adam A zango in ADAMSY, how much we were terrified at what happened to him.
Another component is the story itself. Is it believable? Is it worth being dramatized? Are we watching the movie feeling like it could actually happen to us or are we instead sitting back with half-frown faces waiting for whatever ridiculousness the scriptwriter and director decided upon. Some stories are just commercial franchise watched strictly to kill time because even the actor hadn’t the slightest idea what he was actually doing nor the direction the movie was heading to. The story need not be complex but should be original and unique otherwise one gets bored easily after watching the same story he had previously watched with few different catch-up phrases used by the main characters. WANI GARI seemed too local for my liking but I enjoyed it because of the uniqueness of the story. FARI DA BAKI was a simple story, yet hooked me up because of its originality.
The next important aspect of good film is screenplay. The scriptwriter outlines every aural, visual, behavioral and lingual element of the movie. The scriptwriter must fully understand the characters and must frame them accordingly both in attitudes and dialogues. The scriptwriter should create exciting and sequential scenes with intriguing obstacles in fast-moving yet ears-igniting dialogues necessary to pace up the movie to the achievement of the final goal. The script must conform religiously to the genre. For example, one loses interest easily when too much philosophy is put into a rift-cracking comedy. A good script must be emotional that is it must put fear, laughter etc where necessary with appropriate flashbacks. You will agree with me that films such as SAI WATA RANA, MALIKA had outstanding works of literature because everything we saw or heard were comfortable with our senses.
Another essential play maker yet one of the most heavily underestimated element is passion. Was the director so excited about the picture that he had to make the movie? Did the actor really felt the character? How well has actor transformed into the character? I am talking about Mal Aminu Saira’s love for DAN MARAYAN ZAKI making every actor wishing to be the lead. I am talking about Ali Nuhu’s enthusiasm on MADUBIN DUBAWA. The cast must be able to make you feel you are actually watching a person going through that experience not just someone desperately wanting to round off the movie and begin the next. Such incites the same adrenaline rush into the audience wanting the movie to come to an end rather than cherishing every bit of it. I am going to have problem with a movie if it got too many casts that can’t commit, can’t homogenize themselves into it. A movie is a historic event hence the crew must have that feeling if they are to come up with a reasonable performances.
The last and most important element I am going to talk about is direction. The director interprets the script and coaches performance of every cast. Mal Aminu Saira defines directing as fleshing and summoning a skeleton to life. The director pictures the story imaginatively and decides the pattern of presentation. The director decides to draw the audience into a fun-filled colorful forest or dwells them into a pool of boredom. A good director presents the movie as dramatically as possible with maximum delivery and clarity of the script to the very last episode of the movie. A good director either pushes the boundaries of what we know/think will happen or stick to the genre of the story closely. The movie should be made to make everybody comfortable by taking us to where we are not expecting, by drawing us deeply in to the movie. A good direction involves flowing opposite to the thought of the audience challenging them at every spot. Special effects must be ensured to be in service of the story rather than a substitute for it. Any unnecessary fancy camera angle is taken care of and the pacing off is also decided by the creativeness of the director.
DAKIN AMARYA was definitely up to expectation because the director knew exactly what was expected of the movie and delivered to more than expectation. The director complied with the genre of the movie and made sure every sentence and movement was a dramatic taboo just as anticipated. LAMIRAJ was a serious deep-bending movie that was miraculously presented to address a contemporary global phenomenon. The director made sure the emotions surrounding the entire movie was sympathetic and didn’t even put a single song to distract the audience from his devised path. SAI WATA RANA was emotionally-romantic movie with beautiful moments. The director draws us to the enigma surrounding Nafisat Abdullahi ensured colorful locations, costumes as well as scent cinematography.
In general, good movies should be character and story-oriented. Scripted and direction should make people see and hear great. This applies to almost all movies not only Hausa films.