Have you ever wondered how many redundant questions do we ask?
I am obviously not going to ask you whether you ask such questions yourself because I am absolutely sure that you do. You, at some point in time, have called your friend to enquire about his whereabouts; after calling him on his landline. We ask redundant questions all the time. Like when you take a long shower and your mother bangs the bathroom door to enquire ‘What are you doing inside?’
“Going through the journey of self-discovery.” LOL!
Obviously, you are practising your Grammy/Oscar speech (which ever you fancy). (Unless you have a chronic history of fondling with yourself of which your mother is aware of, in which case her questioning is justified…)
The time when you make tea for your girlfriend and ask her ‘How is it?’
It is tea. If you have boiled sugar, milk and tea, you have done a pretty decent job.
I wonder if it is just an innate quality. Asking redundant questions. Though what we don’t realise is sometimes such redundant questions come in way of our happiness.
If all that you have read until now seems redundant, then let me tell you a question, which is one of the most redundant questions ever asked so much so that all you have read until now will seem like information as useful as your favourite movie stars’ phone number. This is a question that you ask a lot, if you identify yourself as a moviegoer.
“Hey, how was the movie?”
I mean this question is as useless as Trump to America, a condom to Theon Greyjoy, KRK to Earth, Big Boss to Indian Television or acting to Imran Khan. A question like so serves no purpose whatsoever. You don’t believe me? Let us go over the scenarios one by one.
Scenario – One
You ask your friend about the movie and he simply cannot shut up about it. Exhibit A – A Nolan fan singing praises for Dunkirk. Now, irrespective of how the film is or how the film speaks to you, there is a certain possibility where you formulate a notion that Dunkirk is a great film or it could be. What if you watch the film but you don’t connect with it? What if you understand all the visual motifs but you don’t agree with them? What if your friend has wet dreams about Christopher Nolan?
Scenario – By One
You ask your friend about the movie and he tells you that the movie is the worst thing that ever happened to humankind after Taher Shah. Exhibit B – A guy speaking volumes about how shitty the movie Tamasha is (director Imitiaz Ali). What if you watch the movie and you love it? What if the movie acts as a warm hug and helps you quit the job you so wanted to quit? What if you do like Taher Shah after all?
Both of the above scenarios are based on the assumption that you do eventually watch the film of which you asked for your friend’s opinion. But what if you don’t?
What if you actually go ahead and ditch a perfectly awesome movie, which was going to be instrumental for you to follow your dream? What if you don’t go to the theatre where you were going to meet your future wife just because the ‘friend’ who takes selfies and then captions them with statements such as ‘My life, my rules’ told you that the movie sucks? Wouldn’t then, a seemingly innocent and redundant question come in way of your happiness?
I know, telling you to go watch a film hoping to bump into your soul mate is quite an idiotic idea but I hope you catch my drift. Just like the character of Sanjay Mishra in his film Aankhon Dekhi decides to only believe what he sees with his eyes, my request to you is to go watch a movie and only then judge it for what it stands for. I am not saying reviews are useless. I am not saying that. All I am saying is that art is subjective. Sure, you can judge the technical aspects of the film but not the film as a whole.
Feeling a sudden void in your heart? Like you have just lost the single most used question in the whole wide world? A question which has served you many a times when you wanted to make small talk with your crush? Fret not. I have you covered.
Next time you are in a position to ask your friend a question about the film he just watched, ask him the following questions (or any other question that is not a redundant one) –
1. How many moments were there when you could totally identify with the character?
2. How many times did you check you phone during the whole film?
3. What according to you was the core message of the film?
4. Did the dialogue sound realistic?
5. Could you distinguish the character from the actor?
I would not recommend asking, “Was the story good?” This is because most people confuse the story with the plot (If you want to know the difference, just hit this link. I cannot possibly explain it better than Martin Scorsese) Besides, the story is not important, the story structure is. What is even more important in a film is the moments. These moments where we are so engulfed in the film that we forget that it’s a screen.
The moment where you notice the ‘ladke wale’ in Tanu weds Manu Returns exclaiming – ‘Jeh Hans raha’ before leaving infuriated or the moment where you hear Aamir Khan say ‘Toh badha sake hai kay?’ to the barber who is just about the chop off his daughter’s braids. Sure, we do enjoy a good story and a good plot but what we remember films by the human moments they consists of. I am sure you don’t remember the story of Pulp Fiction but you do remember the dance sequence between John Travolta and Uma Thurman.
There you go! Now you have better questions (which aren’t so redundant) to ask your friend after they have watched a film. If you think your friends would not respond well to such questions then at least it would make for one hell of a conversation with your crush.