Category Films

What is anthropomorphism?

Do you love stories of talking animals, singing portraits and chatty kettles? If yes, then you are a fan of anthropomorphism.

A literary device, anthropomorphism (pronounced anthro-polt-more-fizz um) is used by authors to attribute human traits to animals or inanimate objects. This is done to make non-human characters more relatable and entertaining to readers and viewers. You may have seen this in stories and films that depict animals who can talk behave and feel emotions just like us. Children’s classics such as “Dr. Dolittle”, “Charlotte’s Web”, “The Tale of Peter Rabbit”, and “Chronicles of Namia: The Lion. The Witch, and the Wardrobe all feature anthropomorphic characters.

While animals are commonly shown as anthropomorphised creatures, this technique is also used to bring inanimate objects to life by assigning them human-like qualities. Disney-Pixar films often use anthropomorphism – bringing clownfish and toy space-rangers to life as the beloved Nemo in Finding Nemo” and Buzz Lightyear in “Toy Story”.

The term ‘anthropomorphism’ was coined by the Greek Philosopher Xenophanes after observing the physical similarities between people and their Gods.

Anthropomorphism vs. Personification

It is easy to confuse anthropomorphism with another similar literary device called personification. But the two are starkly different. Personification is a figure of speech in which a thing, an animal or an abstract notion is ascribed human qualities. For instance, the sentence, “Nature unleashed its fury through thunderstorms,” is an example of personification, because nature can’t be “furious” as it cannot feel human emotions. However, saying that nature can feel anger and fury emphasises the harshness of the storm. On the other hand in anthropomorphism, the non-human objects literally behave like human beings.


  • “The Beauty and the Beast”: The fairytale as well as its Disney adaptation is packed with anthropomorphic furniture such as clocks and wardrobes that sing, dance and talk.
  • Lewis Carroll’s “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”: Humans and anthropomorphic characters such as walking rabbits, smiling cats and even talking playing cards exist together in this fantastical story.
  • J.K. Rowling’s “Harry Potter series: The magical world of Harry Potter is full of anthropomorphic characters. For instance, the talking and sometimes singing portraits hung inside the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. The centaurs of the Forbidden Forest, who are half human, half-horse and skilled at Divination, are other examples of anthropomorphism.
  •  “The Secret Life of Pets” film franchise: Wonder what your pets – cats, dogs, or even rabbits – are up to when you leave the house? ‘The Secret Life of Pets” films show pets as socialising, watching telenovelas, raiding the fridge and even rocking out to heavy metal music when humans are not around.
  • Richard Adams’ Watership Down: In his debut novel. “Watership Down” (1972), Adams featured rabbits that could talk in their own distinctive language (Lapine).
  • “Doctor Dolittle”: Hugh Lofting’s series of children’s books portray a doctor who can talk to animals in their own languages. The books were adapted into highly successful films, starring Eddie Murphy as the main character.


  • Giving hurricanes human names is also a form of anthropomorphism. It is done because a human name is simpler and easier to comprehend than a scientific name, and makes us more receptive to information.
  • In religion and mythology, anthropomorphism is the perception of a divine being in human form, or the recognition of human qualities in these beings. Greek deities such as Zeus and Apollo are often depicted in human form exhibiting human qualities such as beauty, greed, hatred, jealousy, and uncontrollable anger.

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What is film noir?

World War II. They are typically pessimistic in nature. Films in this genre veer towards themes of corruption and murder and mostly tackle the subject of post-war disillusionment. These films take a sardonic approach to the world around and contain really strong dialogues.

Characters and characteristics

Some distinct characteristics of the genre are cynical protagonists, femme fatales, low-key lighting, flashbacks and diagonal camera angles.

The genre was inspired by pulp fiction, which was quite popular in the 1930s. These novels mostly revolved around the Great Depression and dealt with themes such as corruption, danger, and mystery.

In the wake of World War II, some Hollywood studios – in an effort to draw the audience to crime dramas – explored the dark film genre, which eventually gave rise to the noir concept. In the 1940s and the 1950s, these films were highly influenced by the German expressionism, French poetic realism, and art deco style.


“The Big Sleep”, directed by Howard Hawks, is one of the iconic examples of the genre. Adapted from Raymond Chandler’s 1939 novel of the same name, this film features Humphrey Bogart as Philip Marlowe, a private eye, and Lauren Bacall as the heroine Vivian Rutledge. The noir film explores the themes of murder, blackmail, and deception.

Some of the other examples are ‘The Maltese Falcon”, “Double Indemnity”, ‘The Woman in the Window”, “Laura”, and “Touch of Evil”. Despite enjoying tremendous success in the 1940s and 1950s, the lost its glory over time. However, even now, film noir remains an important discourse for critics and students of cinema.


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Which are the best Hollywood movies in 2021?

With a deadly virus bringing the entire world to a standstill, the year 2020 had all the elements of a Hollywood potboiler. While we can pat ourselves on the back for getting through the ordeal, the New Year promises to be a lot more entertaining. From “The Matrix” to “Mission Impossible”, there are a variety of new releases to look forward to in 2021…

“The Matrix 4″

Directed by Lana Wachowski, starring Keanu Reeves, Carrie Anne Moss, Jada Pinkett Smith, Lambert Wilson. Neo (Reeves) and Trinity (Moss) return to the world of ‘The Matrix’ – the digital world Wachowski helped create way back in 1999.

“Black Widow”

Directed by Cate Shortland, starring Scarlett Johansson, Florence Pugh, David Harbour, Rachel Weisz, Marvel’s prequel focussing on Johansson’s Natasha Romanoff in her quests between “Captain America: Civil War” and “Avengers: Infinity War’.


Directed by Denis Villeneuve, starring Timothée Chalamet, Josh Brolin, Rebecca Ferguson. Adaptation of Frank Herbert’s sprawling sci-fi epic about the son of a noble family entrusted with the protection of the most valuable asset and most vital element in the galaxy.

“Top Gun: Maverick”

Directed by Joseph Kosinski, starring Tom Cruise, Jennifer Connelly, Jon Hamm, Val Kilmer, Jay Ellis, Miles Teller. We’ve had to wait 31 years for a Top Gun sequel. It will again feature Cruise riding motorcycles, playing volleyball and flying jets like a madman.

“The Last Duel”

Directed by Ridley Scott, starring Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, Adam Driver, Jodie Comer. A true story of knights and maidens in which King Charles VI (Affleck) declares that Knight Jean de Carrouges (Damon) settle his dispute with his squire Jacques Le Gris (Driver) by challenging him to a duel.

“Sherlock Holmes 3”

Directed by Dexter Fletcher, starring Robert Downey Jr., Jude Law, Rachel McAdams. The long-awaited Sherlock Holmes sequel screens a decade after “RDJ” and “Law” last brought their mischievous friendship to Victorian England.

“No Time To Die”

Directed by Cary Joji Fukunaga, starring Daniel Craig, Ralph Fiennes, Rami Malek, Naomie Harris, Lea Seydoux, Ben Whishaw, Rory Kinnear. The 25th James Bond” film, with Craig returning for his fifth and possibly final turn as 007. Bond comes out of retirement when his old CIA friend Felix Leiter persuades him to perform one last mission.

“Death on the Nile”

Directed by Kenneth Branagh, starring Kenneth Branagh, Gal Gadot, Armie Hammer, Annette Bening, Rose Leslie. Branagh returns as detective Hercule Poirot following the surprise success of 2017’s “Murder on the Orient Express”, which Branagh also directed.

“Mission: Impossible 7”

Directed by Christopher McQuarrie, starring Tom Cruise, Vanessa Kirby, Rebecca Ferguson, Hayley Atwell, Ethan Hunt (Cruise) is back in action for the seventh instalment of the franchise that showcased his willingness to engage in death defying stunts. McQuarrie returns as writer and director.

“Peter Rabbit 2: The Runaway”

Directed by Will Gluc, starring James Corden, Rose Byrne, Domhnall Gleeson, David Oyelowo. A sequel based on the work of Beatrix Potter sees the rabbit going to the big city, where he meets troublemakers and ends up creating chaos.


Directed by Alex Timbers and Craig Gillespie, starring Emma Stone, Joel Fry, Kirby Howell Baptiste, Paul Walter Hauser, Emma Thompson. Disney’s prequel to the classic with Cruella De Vil (Stone) becoming obsessed with Dalmatian fur.


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What is mythopoeia?

Stories of divine beings with supernatural powers, and of epic clashes between good and evil forces have been a source of entertainment for generations. Rooted in religion and mythology, these tales were often narrated by doting grandmother to their grandchildren over multiple cups of afternoon tea. Today, these folk tales and lores have donned new avatars with modern twists and an international flavour.

Welcome to mythopoeia. It is a world ruled by mighty Greek gods, fierce Viking warriors, and brave witches and wizards. Mythopoeia is a genre in which a fictional mythology is created by the author. If you like reading stories about fantastical creatures and imaginary worlds, you will love it here.

New universes

Books written under this genre contains entirely unique fictional universes, which may have elements of existing mythology. Writers create complex worlds with well-detailed histories chronicling the past and intricate geographies along with the unique laws of nature that govern their fictional worlds.

Who coined the term?

The term is derived from Greek words ‘muthos and ‘poein’, which means “myth making.” R. R. Tolkien was the first to use the word as the title of a poem dedicated to C.S. Lewis. It was published in 1931.

Books and films

  • J. R. R. Tolkien’s “The Lord of the Rings” and “The Silmarillion” series.
  • C. S. Lewis “The Chronicles of Narnia”
  • Rick Riordan’s “Percy Jackson” series, “Trials of the Apollo” and “The Kane Chronicles”.
  • J. K. Rowling’s “Harry Potter’ series and “The Ickabog”
  • Terry Pratchett’s “Discworld” series,
  • Philip Pullman’s “His Dark Materials” series and “The Book of Dust” trilogy.
  • Cornelia Funke “Inkheart” trilogy.
  • Christopher Paolini “The Inheritance Cycle”.
  • Marvel’s comics and films – “Thor”, “Avengers” and “Doctor Strange”.


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What is cliffhanger?

A cliffhanger is a literacy device used to create an element of suspense in the story. When the plotline ends suddenly or is left unresolved. It leaves unanswered questions that make the reader or viewer want to come back to learn what will happen.


The phrase comes from the idea of “hanging off a cliff”. Cliffhangers were first popularized in the serials of the 1920s and 30s, and were often accompanied by the text “To be continued.”

Binge watching

Today, cliffhangers are widely used in television, web, and book series. They encourage people to come back for each new segment or episode. Usually, a cliffhanger doesn’t lend itself well to standalone films. But with the popularity of franchises and sequels, the use of cliffhanger endings in films has increased over the years.

The suspense maker

A cliffhanger is a great technique to use in a thriller because it builds up the action and then leaves the audience on the edge of their seat. Authors frequently build suspense throughout their stories to keep their reader’s attention and increase anticipation for what is to come.

Popular cliffhangers

  • ‘Harry Potter’ series: Author J.K. Rowling is a master of cliffhangers, and she has employed them cleverly throughout all seven books in the “Harry Potter” series. One of the biggest cliffhangers in the series is the ending of the fourth book, “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire” – in the graveyard, Voldemort rises again with the help of peter Pettigrew, and summons his fearsome Death’s Eaters.
  • “Avengers: Infinity War” (2018): The penultimate “Avengers” film packed quite a punch towards the end. Having acquired all six infinity Stones, Thanos uses his newfound powers to snap his fingers and wipe out half of all life in the universe. Half of their team turns to dust and vanishes from existence, including fan-favourite characters such as Drax, Black Panther, and Spider-Man. The last scene shows Thanos sitting peacefully on a rock with a satisfying look on his face as he has fulfilled his dream.
  • “The Dark Knight” (2008): Though Batman defeats the Joker, he is unable to save Harvey Dent, who dies in the aftermath of his kidnapping of James Gordon’s family. Seeking to spare the people of Gotham City from learning the horrible truth about Dent’s crimes, Batman takes the fall for Dent and becomes a wanted fugitive, with the film’s final scene showing him on run from the police.


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Whose life story has the “Black” film draws inspiration from?

Black revolves around a deaf-blind girl, and her relationship with her teacher who himself later develops Alzheimer’s disease. The film draws inspiration from the life of Helen Keller, the blind academic and activist. 

The film was screened at the Casablanca Film Festival and the International Film Festival of India. It won the Filmfare Award for best film. Time Magazine (Europe) selected the film as one of the 10 Best Movies of the Year 2005 from around the globe. The movie was positioned at number five. Indiatimes Movies ranks the movie amongst the 25 Must See Bollywood Films. The film was premiered in the Marché du Film section of the 2005 Cannes Film Festival. Amitabh Bachchan received his second National Film Award for Best Actor at the 53rd National Film Awards, his fourth Filmfare Award for Best Actor and his second Filmfare Critics Award for Best Actor for his performance and Rani Mukerji won her second Filmfare Award for Best Actress and her second Filmfare Critics Award for Best Actress.

Black was originally scheduled to be released on 10 December 2004, but Bhansali decided to postpone its release. Black was released on 4 February 2005 in 170 different towns in India, a small number compared to most large-budget Bollywood films. Black was also screened at several international film festivals like the Casablanca Film Festival. The film released in South Korea on 27 August 2009.


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Which 2015, National Film Award-winning Tamil film narrates the story of two siblings – from a Chennai slum-overcome with a strong desire to taste a pizza?

Tamil filmmaker M Manikandan’s Kaakkaa Muttai is about aspiration, the food chain and a kind of hunger that is unique to the process of globalisation.
Kaaka Muttai’s story revolves around two slum children of Chennai, Tamil Nadu whose desire is to taste a pizza. The film had its world premiere on 5 September 2014 at the 39th Toronto International Film Festival, and was released worldwide on 5 June 2015, and received widespread acclaim for its story and cast performances. It went on to win two National Film Awards at the 2015 ceremony – Best Children’s Film and Best Child Artist (Ramesh and Vignesh).

The first look of the project was announced to the media by Padma on 26 January 2014, coinciding with Republic Day, with Dhanush and Vetrimaaran announcing that they would be making a children’s film to be directed by M. Manikandan, a former wedding photographer, who had earlier directed the short film, Wind (2010), with music by G V Prakash Kumar. Filming for the project began at the end of May 2013, with the maker suggesting that the film would be complete in one schedule. Silambarasan accepted to make a cameo appearance in the film. He joined the team in September 2013 to film scenes alongside Babu Antony who plays a landlord. Two newcomers, Ramesh and Vignesh, had been selected to play the lead roles along with Iyshwarya Rajesh and Ramesh Thilak. In August 2014, it was reported that the film had been completed four months before.


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Which Malayalam film (2009) is named after its protagonist – a speech – and hearing-impaired school child, whose life changes for the better with the arrival of a new drawing teacher?

Keshu is a 2009 Indian Malayalam children’s film directed by Sivan. The film won by Best Children’s Film award at the 57th National Film Awards. It also won the Kerala State Film Award for Best Children’s Film of 2009.

Directed by Sivan, Keshu had Navneeth Krishnan in the lead, and told the tale of a deaf and dumb orphan who lives with his uncle and aunt. It narrates how the naughty, unruly kid develops a friendship with an art teacher, which leads to him finding his true potential in painting.

It was alleged that Sanjeev Sivan, son of director Sivan, was part of the regional jury of the film award and had allegedly recommended his father’s film for the award and hence it was illegal and inappropriate to give the award to ‘Keshu’. The Kerala High court stayed the presentation of the National award to the film following the complaint. Filmmaker and jury member Harikumar alleged that it was a remake of his 2001 film Pularvettom. The petition was dismissed finally by the Highcourt of Kerala, observing that Santosh Sivan was not part of the regional jury while Keshu was nominated for contesting for the national award.


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Recipient of the Karnataka State Award 2016, which Kannada film directed by writer Nagaraj Kote and based on his own book called “Usiru”, tells the story of a school boy who dares to follow his heart?

Baanaadi is a 2014 Indian Kannada language children’s film written and directed by debutant Nagaraj Kote, based on the novel Usiru he wrote.  It stars Praful Vishwakarma, H. G. Dattatreya and Rajesh Nataranga in the lead roles. The supporting cast features Dhruthi, Abhinaya, Sringeri Ramanna, Jayashree Raj, Venkatachala, T. S. Nagabharana, Mimicry Gopi and Yashwanth Kote. Music for five of the six soundtracks in the film were composed by Karthik Sharma, who, with the film became the youngest composer in the history of Kannada cinema.

 Usiru, a novel written by Nagaraj Kote in the 1990s, deals with the upbringing of children in the current era. Deciding to direct a film based on the novel, Kote launched the film in April 2014, having signed Praful Vishwakarma, Rajesh Nataranga and H. G. Dattatreya to play characters of three generations; a young boy, his father and grandfather. The role of Praful’s mother was played by Anubhava, who was pregnant during the filming stages. Filming completed in July 2014.


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India’s official entry for the 2009 Academy Awards Best Foreign Film, which movie, directed by Aamir Khan, is about an eight-year-old Mumbai boy with dyslexia, who excels in art?

Aamir Khan’s debut directorial venture Taare Zameen Par, a sensitive story of an eight-year-old dyslexia child, has been selected as India’s entry to the foreign language category for Oscars at the 81st annual Academy awards.

Taare Zameen Par written by Amole Gupte was released in 2007 and has received critical and Box Office acclaim. Aamir had said that the film did business of Rs 131 crore at the box-office world-wide.

The film made its theatrical debut in India on 21 December 2007, and UTV Home Entertainment released a DVD for Indian audiences in 2008. Disney’s later release of the international edition DVD marked the first purchase of distribution rights for an Indian film by a global company.

Taare Zameen Par has received numerous awards, including the Filmfare Award for Best Film for 2008 and the 2008 National Film Award for Best Film on Family Welfare. It was India’s official entry for the 2009 Academy Awards Best Foreign Film, but did not progress to the short-list.


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