It was one of those lucky solitary evenings that we got by chance.
February has been one crazy month to talk about with lots of changes at work, exams for the girls, mom’s ill health and a short but hectic travel assignment. So this change was a much awaited one. On the eve of Shivarathri before I reached home, the firstborn gave a frantic call to her grandfather and made plans of spending the day at their place. By the time I reached home, the girls were all set with their bags filled up with anything and everything that they would need for the less than 24 hours stay at their grandparents. And the partner in crime, the grandpa, was right there on time to pick them up.
The husband who otherwise reaches pretty late gave a surprise by coming home well before time. I usually do not get to ask him much on weekdays, but this was definitely my day. I requested (read demanded) him to book tickets for Highway, a movie I had longed to watch since the day I saw its trailer. All the reviews that I read (especially this one on IHM’s blog) made it all the more desirable. So there we were, hand in hand, munching our nachos with salsa sauce, not worried about what’s for dinner, or how to make the girls complete their homework, or to keep their school dress ready for the next day. It was just the two of us and yet our mind was full of how Highway was going to be.
Though the husband found the movie quite disturbing (he usually prefers to watch action, romantic comedies or science fiction), I loved the movie. I loved both the lead characters of the story, Veera (Alia Bhatt) and Mahabir Bhati (Randeep Hooda). Alia has given her best to the character in her little capacity. The very fact that the movie is shot travelling across the Indian terrain itself meant that it was worth the price. The scenic beauty, the landscapes, the various cultures, all made it full of life. I loved it for the fact that it was less words and more expressive. Emotions was the highlight of the movie.
Here is one of my favourite dialogues from the movie.
“Jahan se tum mujhe laye ho, mein wahan wapas nahin jaana chahti..
Jahan bhi le ja rahe ho, mein wahan pahunchna nahi chahti…
Par yeh raaste…yeh bahut accha hai..
Mein chahti hoon ki yeh raaste kabhi. khatam na ho”
I loved the scene after the police check post when Veera had hidden herself to save Mahabir instead of trying to escape. The realization was very well portrayed by her.
To me it was a soul-stirring movie which showcased human emotions so very poignantly. From the fear showcased at her life taking a complete turn when she was kidnapped right in front of her fiancee and with no help from him, to her screams towards the end trying to make her family understand why Mahabir did not deserve a death like that, Alia played it all very well. It also showed that freedom, respect and protection is what a woman looks in a man.
Another character worth mentioning is the person who accompanied them on the truck journey, the one who danced with Alia in that English Song, Wanna Mashup. I am sorry but I couldn’t get his name. He too has done complete justice to his character.
The most touching scene of the movie was when she confronted her childhood abuser (her uncle) in front of her entire family and her would-be in-laws. Disturbing it definitely was, but very well portrayed. Without showing any of disturbing scenes explicitly like many other movies/documentaries, it was well showcased through her expressions and the dialogues. Child sexual abuse is on the rise in India and the movie dealt with the very fact that in more than 75% cases, the accused is known to the victim (and the family) and is mostly from within the family or closer circle. We need to educate our children in the best way possible of the threats that lie ahead irrespective of the age of the child. There are ways to let them know what is good and what is bad, what is right and what is wrong. Keeping them informed in a subtle manner is always good. Also, it is very important to let them know that they do not need to worry or be scared of anyone and can come to you with whatever is up on their mind. In the movie, the child had informed her mother and it was shocking for me to learn that even though they were from sound economic and social background, the mother for whatever reasons asked the child to be silent about the entire matter. Grave sin it is!
The other highlight of the movie was A R Rehman’s magical music. Tu Kuja, Maahi Ve, Sooha Saha, Kahaan Hoon Main, each one a gem in itself. But the trophy goes to Nooran sisters (Sultan Nooran and Jyoti Nooran) for Patakha Guddi. Brilliant composition and adorable voice. Way to go girls!
I leave you with this wonderful song.
Imtiaz Ali did it again. Brilliant show man! More power to you.