Lamhaa: A film by Rahul Dholakia – A sordid tale of battered souls

‘Kashmir’ isn’t about political turmoils anymore; it is a quicksand – the more your try to resolve and recuperate, the deeper you get sucked in to the bludgeon of fear, conspiracy and nepotism. ‘Welcome to the most dangerous place in India’ is a blatant statement with immense grit and dissipates humanity from religion. ‘Lamhaa’ is a film imbued in the gruesome stories woven around all those who are conspicuously attached to the bizarre series of events.

Rahul Dholakia has captured the streets of Kashmir in a nonchalant bliss; the camera moving around relentlessly to snap the oblivious is all so evident. There are numerous characters indulging in unscrupulous events and not to mention those who have been shamelessly raving about the freedom of Kashmir with the utmost of bravery and content. All the characters look sane; the intent is to make the viewers think otherwise. And I believe that to some extent, all this showcasing business is a ploy to diminish transparency and create an aura of peace and justice. The film is a documentation of the tyranny that has been vehemently imposed on the people of Kashmir since 1989. The two nations involved are credulous enough to admit that this is not a war to be fought; it’s a calamity that ceases to relinquish itself from the bane of ruthless administrators and politicians who claim Kashmir to be a ‘Company’, immersed in vested interests and insurmountable greed.

The director has shot the film with minimum paramedics and that gives a classy look to the entire set up. James Fowld’s cinematography is commendable; Kashmir still looks like a patch upgraded from an earlier version of heaven. For a film which is more of a biopic cum documentary, the editing is exemplary. The music is restrained; background score is effective in patches.

The performances make this film special. The principal characters get in to the skin and the outcome is quite credible. Sanjay Dutt, Bipasha Basu and Anupam Kher deliver with panache; Bipasha’s matured histrionics says a lot about the hard work she has invested in ‘Lamhaa’. Kunal Kapoor lacked the usual zest of a militant turned politician; his voice was a let down and has to work very hard if he has to bag such author backed roles in future. The supporting cast is a huge list; mostly on the impressive side.

The best aspect of ‘Lamhaa’ is that at no given point of time, does it aim at fulfilling the mundane criterion of complete resolution. The last 50 years could not see the face of emancipation; the vicious circle would continue to torment us for eternal years.

"Jannat-e-Kashmir, mujhe maaf kar de".

The soccer pinnacle at it’s invigorating best..

The triumph becomes an alluring aspect of the extraordinaire when the protagonists live up to the expectations of the underdogs.

The recently concluded ‘FIFA World Cup 2010’ had all those elements embedded in plenty. The Spanish juggernaut was irresistible as they impounded damage on the so called ‘indispensable’ to claim the title of world champions for the first time in history since the journey began way back in 1930.

The emotional content attached to a unanimous decision is imperative and the same was pretty much evident in this tourney of great battles; talent is not the only criteria that falls under the scanner of those lucrative eyes. The big stage is an epitome of perseverance, discipline and tenacity; the teams that showcase this quality consistently reach home with plenty to cheer.

A precarious introspection would tell you that legacy can never be taken for granted; a frivolous fanatic will always vouch for his team minus nuances and without analyzing the pros and cons of the odds he is facing. That, for me, is phenomenal patriotism at its stupid best. Take a look at this edition of the world cup that just ended in the African continent; you will comprehend my statements with elan.

South American powerhouses sank without a trace; all they possessed in this tournament was loads of talent, immense potential and staggering hype. But when it boiled down to performance during those impeccable 90 minutes of excruciating pressure, they faltered. I, like most of those lurking behind to cheer their teams of pure quality in terms of legacy and superstars, had to bite the dust for obvious reasons. And, I realize that my dream was bound to be short-lived amidst those dazzling performers with imperious intentions.

The world cup once again raised those inevitable eyebrows towards the famous notion that on the hindsight, the world cup is a mere replication of the far more impressive players who slog it out in their high profile clubs for a huge ransom. And these statistics loom large when the overly stated teams with towering expectations fail to live up to the expectations of the critiques.

All vigorous statements notwithstanding, the universal appeal of the world cup cannot be disputed. What you do in those 30 grueling days of glitz and ecstasy could prove magical or a disaster; can catapult you to the ultimate stardom or get you submerged within the realms of compounding darkness.

The yardstick is there for all of us, to experience, cherish and get enthralled.

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