Tuesday, April 27, 2010


I read somewhere that the mark of a good book is that it changes every time you read it. I do not know if the same can be said for movies. Some movies drag you back to them, repeatedly, mostly the funny ones, the feel-good ones. Then, there are the other movies, that you do not want to watch more than once. You do not want the impact the movie had on you to change because you have changed. But when you do end up watching a movie like that again, and when you realise that it hits you the same way as it did a few years back, it is an inexplicable feeling...of awe.

I give you Rang De Basanti. Revelations. Causes. Bouts of happiness, all through with a mild undercurrent of poignancy. And eventually, a sad smile, and a lonely tear.

I have read too many posts in the recent past about Rahman's genius, about how he is god, and about how he's always experimenting. So, I shall refrain from talking about him as such. But what his music does to this movie...is something else.

The goosebumps start at Tu bin Bataye. The perfect setting to make anyone yearn for a bunch of friends like that...to make any girl wish she had the look Sonia has in her eyes with her perfect man...to make one wish he/she was throwing leaves down at the happy couple with the rest of the gang. The song is as dream-like as reality can get... floaty bliss... you can't stop smiling at these young people who want to do nothing other than be in each other's company, and savor small nothings in life. Yet at the end of it, when you see seven blurry figures lost in their own world walking arms-around-shoulders into that sunset...your heart grows heavier, and you know that what is easily the happiest moment of the movie, is, but a classic calm before the storm. Mishri ki dali, zindagi ho chali...

Rahman then gives us Luka Chuppi. Prasoon Joshi gives us Luka Chuppi. As if the music of the second half was meant to compete with that of the first half. Wonderfully portrayed. The indian flag folded, and the pistol-shots into the sky...the teary-eyed faces sobbing through the smoke...the white...the devasted mother, hollow eyed, with loss etched all over her face, almost collapsing at the sight of her dead son's trunk...the girl, having lost the man she was meant to marry, pulls out a picture of both of them from his diary...
Kya bataoon maa kahan hoon main, Yahaan udney ko mere khula aasmaan hai...

And then there is fire, burning hard in the eyes of those that care...those who want justice...those that for the first time in their lives, have a cause to believe in, and fight for. Khoon chala adds to the shivers...with the candles and the crowd, the unreasonable assault on believers and the blood shed...and most of all, with each trying to protect the other.

When I watched this movie for the first time, almost 4 years back, one line stayed in my head for a very long time. Sonia's 'Maar dalo...'. And so she said the words... and as friends avenging the death of the best man they ever knew, they found their justice in murder.

And they do not stop there. They tell their fellow citizens what they did, and why they did it. They throw themselves out in the open, ready to face anything, having fulfilled their purpose. And what better than the ascending notes of Robaroo to wrap up the elation neatly? Again, Prasoon Joshi's lyrics can't get better. He says it all by saying so little... DJ dropping his gun in finality, Karan's pain-filled expression relieved in that first hug, and as he looks into DJ's eyes at suraj ko mein nigal gaya...Laxman breaking into tears while hugging Aslam at wo loha tha pighal gaya... beautifully crafted scene, like the director did not want to waste a single word from the song...so carefully overlayed... Sheer brilliance.

And then comes the end... as they die one by one...and we're left with nothing but the echoes of their laughter in our ears. And they walk together from the lush green field into the white light... Its over. They fought for their cause...and in their heads, they won. And how! And you...are left staring at the titles, wondering what really hit you...

I said nothing about the over-lapping freedom struggle portion of this movie...the clever screenplay...and how each one of these students become the character they enact for Su's documentary. It seems so seamlessly done... one could go on and on.

I love this movie more than I did before. I love the music, more than most of Rahman's other albums. Maybe that's because the songs have been stitched so well into the script, that when you listen to them, you are instantly reminded of how the actual scence made you feel, and you love it even more. The simplicity of the lyrics complements every song, every scene...it just makes one so happy to see such good effort, such meticulous balancing...such genius in cinema...and nonetheless, what we always ache for - Inspiration.

Paint it Saffron.

Yours "Chaaya liya bhali dhoop yahaan hai..."ly
Signing off...

Saturday, April 10, 2010


When music fails to reach the depth of your being...and your ears refuse to acknowledge the sweet song of the breeze...close your eyes. And let me be your melody, in all silence...in all blackness.

When shadows of the bygones seem to jeer at you from the sidelines...and ambiguity of the forthcoming leaves an abominable splash of despair in your perturbed skies...Let me be your rainbow...your dash of colour. Your hope.

When questions swallow you into their whirlwind of complexity...and answers fancy eloping on the chariots of elusion... Let me be your momentary lapse of reason. Your flash of nothingness, that changes it all.

When yesterday is long gone, and tomorrow has finally come...when the spark has returned, and your need to see the light overcomes your fear to let the hidden flame flare...lock in that aching embrace. And let me be that single tear at the corner of your eye. Let me be the memory that will slowly fade.

When you're strolling along your familiar pathway at dusk...and the rays from the west make those silver streaks gleam crimson and yellow ... lift your eyes to that sunset. And let me be your sigh. Let me be your smile. Let me be the reflection of that horizon, stealing daylight from all around...only to give you a sky of sparkling stars.

When the river of hope has been quenched in all ruthlessness...or when serenity surrounds you like a warm blanket of content...look up to the stars. And let me be the one that will fall down slowly from the heavens, for you to wish upon. Let me be the promise. Let me be the love. Let me be...the end.

Arziyaan saari main,
Chehre pe likh ke laaya hoon,
Tum se kya maangu main,
Tum khud hi samajh lo...

Yours "Daraarein Daraarein hain maathe pe maula..."ly
Signing off...