I was playing around with film and visual storytelling for 10 years before I made my first feature,” answered acclaimed director Darren Aronofsky to a question asked to him during an exclusive master class session at the Odessa International Film Festival. Darren Aronofsky belongs to a thin group of filmmakers, who can be superimposed with their characters in a perfect way, as they and their characters are thriving for perfection and sturdy in nature.

Aronofsky prefers to exhaustively explore the inner worlds of his characters and often leaves the viewers in a disconcerted dilemma. He demands the same effort he had put into this exploration from his viewers and this approach is the important characteristic of his auteurism. His unique style connects the psychology of the characters to the filmmaker and then, eventually to the audience. He broke through the Hollywood castle with his 1998 debut, Pi, which bore all these marks of an auteur.

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In this master class session, Aronofsky opens up about the substantial mental and physical effort he had put into filmmaking and how hard it was for him to find his path in the early years. He says the difficulty of telling a story is not just a financial problem, but an indication of what the artist is capable of under challenging an hostile power and technological circumstances. He emphasizes the importance telling very personal stories, stories close to your heart and soul.

According to him, the important thing that makes a filmmaker unique is identifying the right story that can be told only by him and entertain the people. At the same time, Aronofsky reminds that in order to make money, a filmmaker who prefers personal stories had to be lucky and capable of catering to a large group’s taste.

He asked the young filmmakers how human their characters are. When a filmmaker chooses a personal mode of narration, naturally there would be a reflection of his own self on the characters, with which the viewers can associate their selves too. This process works like an assurance given to the viewers, promising people are thinking, feeling pain, rejoicing, and making love in similar ways all over the world.

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Such a close look into the lives of ordinary people can reveal the extraordinary layers in their life and such movies hold the viewers close. Aronofsky says that filmmaking is all about finding people, the unique things they do and what makes them moving their life forward. The viewers can relate very easily to such characters.

Darren Aronofsky and his characters are thriving for achieving something transcending and are singular and uncompromising, no matter what the consequences are.  He insists on having a visceral experience for his viewers through explicitly physical representations of his objects, in accordance with his view, “the way to the heart is through the body.”

Written By: Ragesh Dipu

Image Courtesy- www.the-talks.com

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