janmantar ke kalantar mein
mrityu to kewal madhyantar hai.
jo jeevan hum jee lete hain,
jeevit uska ek-ek pal hai,
beeta kal bhi aaj kabhi tha,
aaj hi aane wala kal hai,
punarjanam bhi kya hai,
keval, jevatma ka sthanantar hai.
nashwar jag hai,
prem amar hai,
prem se hi jeevan mahan,
prem mein bhut, bhavishya na kuch bhi,
prem to kewal vartaman hai.
Rough translation would be something like:
In the journey of soul,
Death is just a passing aisle.
Life that we live,
Remains perpetually alive.
That, which is past now,
Was present then,
Resurrection is what?
Only transfer of soul.
This world is ephemeral,
Love, only, is eternal.
Love makes life great,
Love is no past, no future, nothing,
Love is only the now, the present.
How does it feel? Romantic…eh?
The above lines are taken from the movie, Bhagmati – the queen of fortunes, which is based upon the (eternal?) love story of Bhagmati and Quli Qutub Shah, dating 400 years back in history of Hyderabad, yet another in the flock of historical films.
There is a much-hyped history professor, who keeps chanting about the significance of history. In the end, he uttered above lines. In the beginning, he spoke a great deal on history. History is past; history is present, history is future. One who gropes only in past limits oneself for the universe is linked with the chain of events capable of unfolding anything of the past and the future. One who understands past can certainly understand the future. Ah! That’s romanticized. Perhaps, a similar school of thought has endorsed: history repeats itself.
So here is a movie that envisages the glamour of history. The director, Ashok Kaul, says: “When I sat in Quli Qutub Shah’s tomb I could feel the vibrations of their romance.”
The movie seemed to me a hotchpotch of everything you can imagine – animation, drama, links, mystery, treachery, villains, heroes, beauties, culture, traditions, good-men, bad-men. And above all love. Eternal love, as they put it.
“This story was almost parallel to the period of Salim and Anarkali and just a few years before the Taj Mahal was built,” adds the director.
I had read a great deal about this movie, that it would tell how Hyderabad got its name?, that it’s India’s first live-animation combination film, that it has Hema Malini shaking legs on classicals, and everything. I was tempted to watch it, but nothing out of these things could leave an impression on me. What I liked most was the concept, or say logic, that tried to justify the links between past and future, and of course present. That seemed romantic, that’s fine I guess, sometimes you got to lose your control, your physical pillars to support the metaphysical existence of things. I did that. And I enjoyed.
But, the movie could have been made more beautiful, more enthralling. It was a nice attempt, but remained only an attempt in the end. It lacked gravity, the pompousness that it needed very much.
The life theory, resurrection of men, agelessness of love, morality and devotion of true men, was all seemed to be derived from religious texts. Had they mixed some pickle in that, the movie would have created a rare rapture.
Also, the film seemed to be a little digressed. I couldn’t understand what it tried to depict? Whether a plain love story, or a movie-with-a-social-message, or a mixture of both? The ending line was “Let’s begin tomorrow with universal love”. Well…that was confusing.
Do you remember the serial “Bharat Ek Khoj” that was telecasted on Door-Darshan years ago? That serial used to leave me very empty every Sunday. It made me ask so many questions that I started fascinating the un-fascinating. It was then that I began to love history. Today, I know, I live history and I appreciate its importance, perhaps that’s why I appreciated this movie. And moreover, I am a sort of a mystical person, who dabbles a lot in inexplicable stuffs, and circular logics. You might not like this movie, but perhaps, you might appreciate what it said about history.