Now, this is a first for me. I haven’t actually reviewed anything, not really. But with Highway, the Hindi movie, I felt like I had to. But, my review is coming approximately 10 days too late. Not because I only just watched it. I watched it on the day of its release – 21st February. And then I watched it again, on 23rd February. And then one time more.
And yet, I couldn’t bring myself to talk about the movie. This might be the movie that has affected me in the most obvious, profound ways. Ways which I cannot even fully comprehend. For a week and a half, I felt like I was looking at everything around me in a haze, in a blur. The only thing that seemed really real to me, that still seems real to me, is whatever Imtiaz Ali showed me. The only truth seems like the one spoken by Veera. And Mahabir. The only sound that my ears truly registered is the whispered, melancholic ‘Maahi Ve’.
This movie was like beautiful poetry to me. Somewhere, somehow, it was a poetic lamentation infused with beauty of nature, beauty of oneself. There is a scene in the movie, where Veera sits on a rock, in the middle of gushing, clean waters, and laughs. Just breathes and laughs. And then she cries. Then she laughs and cries.
This is what did while watching the movie. I don’t know if that is what catharsis is, or what being moved means. But I laughed and cried and loved with every single frame of the movie.
I have always believed that the best changes are the ones that you can feel. We all change, constantly. But the change within us that we can feel, are the best kind of changes. Every time I watched this movie, or listened to a song from it, or even thought about it vaguely, I felt something shift within me. Sometimes majorly, sometimes imperceptibly. But the change was always there. But only this very second, while writing this review, did I realize that the change that was happening within me was nothing but healing. I am healing because of this movie. I am, as corny as it sounds, feeling more closely because of this movie.
I read all the reviews I possibly could about this movie. All tweets. Everything. And some reviewers didn’t like the film, and some did. But this film feels so personal, that it doesn’t feel like anyone can understand it as well as I do. So, it doesn’t feel like anyone talking about the movie is doing it justice. Even though by no means was I a part of it, this film somehow belongs to me. And yet, I want to share it with everyone. It is within me, and outside of me.
I know all of this is confusing. Heck, even I don’t understand what I feel. But the fact that a movie has made me feel and think and, most importantly, live, at all, is a feat. Before this movie, I felt like I was floating through life, watching, observing, but not really living. Seeing life through a frame. Now, this movie has gently prodded me to put the frames down, and experience. And I cannot NOT do what the film wants. So here I am, vulnerable and strangely enough, happy.
PS- the movie also inspired me to take a trip to Himachal. Which I hopefully will. Soon.