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Cutting to Hone Greatness with Editor Vishnu Perumal

There’s no question that the talent in front of the camera can attract audiences to a film. The female and male lead of the painful romance Love in the Rain have major accolades to boast of in their resume; Vibish Sivakumar for his role in the Oscar winning Best Film Life of Pi and Briana Evigan’s for the Step Up franchise films which earned her an MTV Movie Award. Respectively as Manish and Michelle, the chemistry and talent of these two actors lights up the screen but it’s the work of the professionals behind the camera who emphasize the performances these actors have delivered. This is particularly accurate in regards to Love in the Rain’s editor Vishnu Perumal. Perumal was enlisted by writer/director Rajendra Thakurathi (winner of “Best of Festival” at the Berkeley Video & Film Festival for My Claire) when the previous cut of the film was not achieving the tone and potential he’d envisioned. The editing of a film can be as daunting, arduous, taxing, and eventually creatively fulfilling as the entire process leading up to this final task in the filmmaking process. Placing his artistic dream in the secure hands of Vishnu, Rajendra was convinced that he’d see it realized as he’d envisioned; a notion vetted by Perumal’s win for Best Editing of Love in the Rain at the Oniros Film Awards. Vishnu’s work cements the rule that an exceptional film requires immense talent on and off camera to achieve greatness.

Editor Vishnu Perumal

When Rajendra Thakurathi approached Vishnu to take over as editor of Love in the Rain, it was under the presumption that he would make adjustments that would help the film achieve the director’s vision; what he didn’t expect was that this new editor would accept only under the proviso that he would be allowed to cut the film from scratch. Convinced that Vishnu would be able to unearth the emotion of the actor’s performances appropriately, Rajendra consented and waited for the results. This agreement was largely due to Perumal’s prior work and reputation in the industry for focusing on story partnered with his subtle but insightful display of the characters. The pacing of Love in the Rain was critical for the film as Vinshu explains, “In a film like this, the pacing is extremely essential because the pacing of each scene has to be complementary to the mood, otherwise it would make the film feel too generic and stagnant. I had to be aware of the pacing going into every scene as well as the pacing before it. I wanted the film to feel like a gradual wave that slowly gets higher and higher until the very end.” The film is the story of two college friends who get married due to a legal situation. Their careers have pulled them away from each other, literally to different cities. With the entirety of the film taking place in a restaurant as the couple contends with their possible future, or lack thereof, the emotions they’ve left dormant for so long begin to surface. Part drama, part romance, and perhaps part self-counseling session, each member of this married unit comes to battle with their own suppositions and that of their spouse. What might’ve been presented as an uncomfortable but necessary conversation is instead presented as a torrent of emotional dissections which is exhaustive and yet somehow hopeful.

Love in the Rain

The attempts of the characters in understanding the motivation of the other is reflected in the process of creating the film as Vishnu notes, “With this film I learned a new found sense of appreciation for the director and how collaboration, when done right, can result in the best possible outcome for the film. There were many points through the post-production process where I felt that my instincts and taste superseded that of the director's and that perhaps he would be appreciative of me showing this. After the first rough cut, I was surprised to receive a ton of notes and it was then that I realized I might not be initially on the same wave length. If I had any chance of making this film as great as I wanted it to be, I understood that I had better get a sense of the director's vision. Through our collaborative work, we were able to make a film that was better than what I had imagined initially. Working with Rajendra gave me new insight on how to go about the collaborative process with future directors.” Proving that empathy is his professional ethos for sculpting great stories on screen, Vishnu Permual’s work with the film’s director is life and art learning from each other to create masterful works.

Written by Patrick Wilson
Cutting to Hone Greatness with Editor Vishnu Perumal Reviewed by JaamZIN on 7:30:00 PM Rating: 5
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