Have you ever felt a tinge of an overwhelming sense of detachment while doing your tie in front of the mirror? Or rather a sense of detachment with your job? May be at times, with yourself? Is it so that you have already been too used-to to keep this stirring thought from crossing into your mind?
This is what our lives do to us at times. This is what happens when we fall into the trap to the scheming society which expects us to act and live in a certain way, thus making us all the more miserable. It makes us lose the grip with reality, often blurring the numbing ambiguity between real/role. Between what we wish we were, and what we have become.
Imtiaz Ali’s ‘Tamasha’ – floats on a similar plane, often faltering with its tragic, and at times rejuvenating in its joy.
The protagonists are not simply a ‘boy’ and a ‘girl’ whose paths cross under the serene blue sky of Corsica – but there’s more to the plot than one would expect.
Yes, it is a love story. But if you thought it is like an Indianised version of the beautiful ‘Before Sunrise’ series or just a love story blooming in a foreign land – you are on the wrong side.
‘Tamasha’ is about life, about the Shakespearean notion of us human beings being mere actors on this stage of life. However, not everything we expect of this life turns out to happen as we plan it. At times, we are all the victims of the slick, domineering demands of society – of the ruling stereotypes which expect us to behave in a certain way, live and earn in a certain way.
Ved (Ranbir Kapoor) and Tara (Deepika Padukone) happen to cross each others paths and strike up a friendship in the ravishing locale of Corsica, France. However, they decide to keep their friendship free from all formalities and refrain from exchanging facts about one another.
They agree on a mutual note to keep the friendship sans sex or any ‘physical’ closeness, also, they plan to delve into the exciting escapes of life, indulge in guilty pleasures and ‘living the story of their lives’.
The game changes, the story takes a big twirl, when Tara leaves Ved uninformed, only to realise that she is no more the same girl and has actually fallen for this ‘nameless’ friend in Corsica. She finds him again in Delhi, but to her surprise finds that the ‘Don’ she knew in Corsica has changed. The ‘Ved’ she meets in Delhi is a man who is wearing the shoes of a person she doesn’t even know (not that Ved knows it himself, either).
Ali’s direction, as expected, is pretty good. However, the story at times lays stale – ridden only with a mere mishmash of cinematography and vivid colours of Corsica, offering not much until the first half.
The second half, however, accentuates the intensity of the film, thanks to Ranbir’s powerful performance and Deepika’s contribution to the plot – which runs on the emotional ambiguity of the two characters.
Ved is changed, but it is this Ved which makes ‘Tamasha’ a treat to the eyes with his enigmatic, believable performance. The love story here is given a different twist, it is ambiguous and fleeting at the same time – making us realise that this is how love shapes itself under the tumultuous strikes of life and solitude.
But wait, it is not all about pain and angst. It is also, in equal parts, about victory and rejoice. The screenplay wins, as it complements the plot with its quirk and speed, and at times, it slows down to a dulling pace.
Ali is known for creating magic with his characters, he did that with Ranbir Kapoor in ‘Rockstar’, in ‘Jab We Met’ and in ‘Highway’.
In ‘Tamasha’ – it would be safe to say, Ranbir steals the show, once again, hands down.
Deepika was fine, often portraying the pained lover with ease. The cinematography was powerful, and music by AR Rahman was soulful and touchy. The song ‘Agar Tum Sath Ho’ and ‘Tu Koi Aur Hai’ are beautiful and moving.
Overall, ‘Tamasha’ is a definite watch for all those who believe in love and the fact that people change, but not always for reasons of their own, but because of the world they live in. A clear picture of how twisted your life can get under the painful currents of life. All said and done, the clear winners in this ‘drama’ are the protagonists, more than the story itself.