I remember watching the film Love Aaj Kal a couple of years ago, and thinking to myself that it is one of the most shallow and illogical romantic films I have ever seen. Perhaps, the universe wanted me to rethink my opinion, and I did- partially after watching Rockstar and wholly after watching Tamasha (which I later used as a case study for my thesis at Warwick). Through both the films, I realised that the point of the films is not going to be brought to light if you don’t watch them from a very deep and pure place of love within yourself.
And that’s exactly why when I went to watch Jab Harry Met Sejal yesterday, I knew that I’d be in for something special, something substantial and something worthy to carry back with myself after I step out of the theatre, and thankfully, I found it. I found it because I did not go into the theatre with any kind of preconceived notions: all I did was carry my heart along. Which is why, for me, it was a beautiful, sweet and well- meaning film.
I truly believe that Imtiaz Ali is a man capable of a revolution and he is using one of the most powerful mediums in our country: that of film, to convey a very beautiful message to us Indians. He is constantly reminding us, even if unconsciously, that being passionate about singing and dancing and romance only when watching it on screen isn’t enough and that you have to dare to embrace and embody it beyond that- you have to inculcate it within your very own way of loving. He reminds us over and over again to dare to love- freely and stupidly, naively and yet with faith, but with abandon and without fear. Like you would if you were the leading pair of a blockbuster Bollywood film.
So I’d suggest that you go watch the film guys. If nothing else, watch it for the fun, watch it for the travel, watch it for the songs, or watch it for Imtiaz, Shah Rukh and Anushka. Watch it to see that there’s a lot of Sejal and a lot of Harry in all of us- in our longings and in our fears, in our desires and in our pain, in our journeys and our acquaintances with what we assume to be our actual selves but are not! But when you watch it, believe in the possibility of the reality of that story because that’s the only way you’ll still be able to watch it and get out of the cinema hall with a smile on your face.
Just don’t forget to take your heart along to the film. 🙂