MAMI was so much fun this year. Especially now that I know how to get movie recommendations, which venues to visit, how to book the movies, spend less time in queues and more time inside theatres.
How MAMI is unique from watching movies in a theatre on a regular day:
- You are watching the best of the best. These are movies which haven’t released in theatres and are only doing the festival rounds. Many of them may never get a theatre release. These are diverse movies about topics you haven’t even heard or thought about.
- Movies start on time. Even at PVR. I swear. Who thought that was possible in India? I have watched atleast 20 movies at the fest by now and except for the opening film, ALL of them start exactly on time.
- I had to stand for the National Anthem 14 times in 4 days. Torture. It makes me want to pick a fight with every troll on Twitter who considers playing of National Anthem in the theatres a sign of patriotism.
- No intervals. Holding your pee or thirst or hunger till the movie is over is not unusual. Nobody walks out of a good movie to pee.
- People clap at the end of a good movie. Maybe the director is watching along with us. Maybe he/she isn’t. Doesn’t matter. It is our duty to express our appreciation.
- There wasn’t one movie where someone’s cellphone rang. Basic etiquette is followed here.
- There is no time for food. Sustaining on popcorn is the norm. PVR launches a smaller popcorn pack for Rs 70 so students can afford them. On the last day I wanted to have a quick lunch at Kailash Parbat which is across the road from PVR but there was no time. I was running from one movie to the next.
- Talking to strangers and exchanging notes on the movies watched till now is the common topic of conversation. I didn’t do too much of this because I had booked movies in advance and didn’t spend too much time in queues.
- 8 am is a crucial time when the bookings for the next day open. Some movies get booked out in 1 min (mother!) so it’s important to be on the bookshow site by 7.55 am. I rescheduled by gym/run around that time.
- Stalking people on Twitter to check who watched what is considered research.
- I watched movies at all theatres in Mumbai – Regal, Andheri, Juhu, Kurla, Lower Parel. Thane was too out of the way for me, of course.
- I would reach home at midnight every night and then wake up at 6 am for a workout. I hardly slept for 4 days but it was worth it.
It is a different experience to watch movies with movie buffs. Regular movies seem so boring and mediocre now.
I am not over MAMI yet and watching the movies screened in 2016. You can check them out on my other blog. Link at the top.