Poem of pain, burning and a journey: PARWAAZ

By UTPAL DATTA

 

The duration of the film is only six minutes, but it takes a long span of time to settle the ripples created in our mind caused by the film. To speak the truth, the ripples do not come to a halt, they continue in our mind and open unexplored boulevards to discoverthe pain of a creative mind.

 utpal

Dark clouds on a rainy day, thunder, the camera tilts down from the deep blue sky, there is a woman in black on the sea-shore, standing like a statue,and the recitation of a poem comes from the background–

My eyes reach out to the horizon /The moments fleet by…

(The woman looks towards the sky)

The aroma of dreams is in the air / Dreams that propel me forward…

 

A red kite flies on the sky, the camera tilts down, a young girl is playing with that kite. The film ‘PARWAAZ’, directed by Biju Viswanath, based on a poem by Abha Iyengar, begins like this. The Urdu word Parwaaz means Flight. This flight is the flight of a poet’s mind.

 

The colour blue has governed the film from the first frame to last one. Blue sky, blue sea, blue widespread water– this blue colour has concentrated the grief and dismal shades of the innermost theme of the film. And especially the use of wide-angled lens has contributed to widen the effect of the blue colour. And the figure of the poet in her black costume and the boat in the evening placed as a contrast to the blue perspectivehas not only enriched the aesthetic appeal of the visuals but also elevated the mood of the poem in visual format.

 

The original poem on which this film is made has only twelve lines,through which the poet has successfully expressed her idea of wanting to fly to another horizon, leaving this painful world. The director BijuViswanath,has concentrated on especially two motifs:of a red kite and a teenage girl on a sea-shore to visualize this core theme of the poem.

 

For a few shots the director has left his colour blue and taken shelter in brown. A lady is writing on paper sitting on a riverside– poetry comes from the background

Poems flow onto the page / They are my dreams for posterity…

 

In these shots we find no touch of blue colour. Just after that, the camera captures a group of birds flying in the blue sky and gradually that shot is superimposed with a cremation fire burning on the bank of a wide water body. The cawing of the birds mingles with the sound of the cremation fire. The sound increases along with the close-ups of the fire and another line of the poem is heard from the background–

The crackling fire burns with life/Carrying my dreams to greater heights/

There is a strange reassurance in these flames/They write my story…

And at last a boat comes and the poet rides on the boat and goes out. At the end of the film– we see that red kite of dream-hope-desire still flying on the blue sky.

 

At the very outset of the film we saw the poetin a soft, pensive mood and towards the end, after the cremation fire, she looks very grave and distressed. The film ends with the same line of the beginning but there is a vast transformation of the visuals. This difference is the main interpretation of the original poem and this transformation has elevated the poem to another height, added another dimension,making the film more complete by itself.

 

Each and every creative person has to cross the dreams of childhood, the pain of loneliness and burning and after such salvation he or she might reach the proper avenue that leads to creativity. This journey is like a flight of a kite in the sky or might be a boat in a water body trying the way out to the sea. The sensitive director BijuViswanath, has visualized this theme with help of multilayered colour, space composition, photography, powerful images, haunting background score and successfully enriched the audience with a new cinematic expression.

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