Last night, I was lazing around with my books strewn about on my bed, laptop on, and the sound of rain loud in my ears. When I couldn’t focus on any printed word, I decided it was time to go to the second most likable distraction around – movies. Popcorn and a cup of tea ready, I decided to browse my hard disk for something to help me pass the time. Hubby suggested watching ‘Gulaal‘ and I can’t thank him enough. At the same time, I am sad that it took me five years plus to watch this movie (it was released way back in 2009). The movie made its mark on various fronts but what absolutely did it for me was the poetic flow – of the movie, its dialogues, songs and the frames. The hard-hitting, honest and absolutely brilliantly penned down lyrics were such that I am still humming – “aarambh hai prachand…” out loud. The two most important people responsible for the impact the movie makes have to be – Anurag Kashyap (Direction) and Piyush Mishra (Music). The 140 minute long poetic narrative that flows with the aid of actors and singers bringing the screenplay alive leaves a feeling in the minds and hearts of the audience which is poignant, prudent and pollyannaish as well as dejected, dreary and doubtful all at the same time. The movie opens with a very strong worded monologue by Kay Kay Menon on the need of ‘Rajputana’ independence from India. With the tone set by the monologue, the plot goes back eleven months in time to retrace the steps and circumstances which led to the first scene. The story is set in modern-day Rajasthan, a western Indian state and deals with issues such as legitimacy, separatist/ secessionist tendencies, royal households, student politics, ragging, corruption, election rigging, money, deception, crime, princely state integration, the desire to be accepted and acknowledged, ‘use’ of ‘people’ as ‘things’ and the like. The use of local dialect adds to the authenticity. I don’t want to give away the plot, but suffice to say that all these themes dealt in a single story-line is worth a watch. The most entertaining, inspiring and though provoking part of the film are the songs. Some of the lines which left me pondering are –

  1. A patriot must ALWAYS be ready to defend his country from his government!
  2. Khudi ko kar buland itna, ki tu Himalaya pe ja pahunche … aur Khuda khud tujhse yeh pooche, abhe laikhat utrega kaise? – Elevate yourself to such an extent, that you reach the Himalaya … and God himself will ask you, you fool how will you get down? [Source]
  3. The modern-day adaptation of ‘Sarfaroshi ki tamanna ab hamare dil me hai’ [Source]
  4. Some really good lines epitomizing satire from the song – Ranaji
  •  Jaise door desh ke tower me ghus jaaye aeroplane
  • Jaise Bisleri ki botal pee ke ban gaye Englishmen
  • Jaise har ek baat pe bina kisi ke lagne lag gaya ban
  • Jaise sare aam Iraq me jaake jam gaye uncle Sam
  • Jaise bina baat Afghanistaan ka baj gaya bhaiya band

Each and every song of this movie is worth listening to and pondering upon. Here is a link to the lyrics of some of the songs if anyone is interested. I shall post these in Hindi (Devanagari script) soon.

  1. Aarambh Hai Prachand
  2. Jab sheher hamara sota hai
  3. O Ri Duniya (translation)
  4. Raat ke Musafir

I most definitely recommend watching this movie if you have been as lazy as ignorant as I have and haven’t watched it as yet.


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