Man Eats Rock

HBox

Man Eats Rock Main

2011, 22 minutes, colour, wordless
Directors: Nikhil Chopra/Munir Kabani
Cinematographer: C.J. Anil Kumar
Cast: Eve Lemesle, Jana Prepeluh, Loise Braganza, Madhavi Gore,
Mihir Sud, Munir Kabani, Nikhil Chopra, Shivani Gupta
A video set in three worlds, and treated as three vignettes. A naked primate emerges from a cave, peering into a pool of water. His explorations are juxtaposed those of a foppish, fully dressed ‘gentleman’, with top hat and cape, seeking to light a fire atop a mountainous landscape. A group of elaborately costumed men and women, dressed to the nines, wind their way, to have a picnic. What next? A denouement? The scene is clearly set for something very dramatic to happen. A woman dances to the strains of dhrupad. Chopra, best known for his extraordinary work in performance art that has inquired into the depredations of colonial behaviour, now takes this to a new level with this cinematic exploration of primitivity amid a comedy of manners. In Chopra and Kabani’s worlds, film becomes a means of record making to talk about the function of representation. According to the filmmakers, the video attempts to question our place on this planet, as we get subsumed by our need and desire to consume. It is interesting to note that the piece was originally commissioned by the Fondation d’enterprise Hermes to be screened in the H Box, a specially-designed ‘nomadic’ viewing unit, comprising a capacity audience of no more than eight.
Ashish Rajadhyaksha

Man Eats Rock (Excerpt) from Nikhil Chopra on Vimeo.

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