Climaxes are more often than not an end to a story’s flow; also few times a lead up to a sophomore movie. The protagonists go on with their lives much after the screen goes blank; probably a little differently happier,sadder or alive than we saw them last. After all we were the disconnected spectators who had paid a price to eavesdrop into their lives, while they were just unassuming people leading a life little aware about the spectacle that they had become, in the name of a movie.
I’ve always revered a well written drama bookended by its prologue and epilogue for the gravitas they bring in; especially the epilogue- for it creates the last impact that lingers with me long after the running time- constituting thus a lasting impression.
It is in this context that Lootera is a special movie with an exemplary song fashioning its epilogue.Make no mistake about the fact that it is an invigorating piece of cinema by itself-a gift which never stops giving-the epilogue only serving as a grand wrap around it.
A man scuttles through the torrid snowfall towards a bald elder tree, which effectively is laden barren with naked branches pointed skywards as in a plea to the heavens. A solitary leaf exhibiting dogged resilience much to the nature’s surprise seems to be the only form of life in it. Its last hope; probably someone else’s too.
We see an identical leaf peeping from his jacket, with painted veins and a piece of twine annexed.Immediately we get a cue to how the lone leaf’s resilience was doctored.
As he climbs to the top of the tree to replace the leaf with the one in his pocket, the song begins- it talks about a man’s plea to providence to be let alone and just alive. His tryst to the top of the tree seems to be the only animation for miles around in the avalanche struck valley.
He bleeds with every progress from one branch to another, reeling in pain he still goes about resolutely. It’s only when he replaces the previous day’s leaf with the one in his pocket, does he lets go off; figuratively and literally.
His headward fall doesn’t incite panic, but inhabits a serene embrace in his face. Even as blood smudges beneath his head forming a red halo, he continues to look at his leaf snubbing the storm above with contentment. For it’s an edifice for a loved one he once connived.
She was royalty, conned of everything that made her that- left to take refuge in a modest mansion in a snow hit ghost town-by the very same man who was now staking his life for her’s. Saddled with loneliness and an incurable disease feeding on her life stream, she had picked an unlikely soulmate in a tree outside. A tree which was lonely,blizzard hit and hopeless-much like her,dying with every leaf withering away. Withering in tandem to which she had numbered her days.
Little did she know about the part irony was to assume in her life. That it had appointed the man who had robbed her to where she was to be her antidote; who would eventually go on lay himself in the altar of her prosperity.
He gathers himself up rather shabbily from the impetus of the fall- punctured and bleeding- he stumbles like a headless chicken besotted in fulfilment. Fulfilment from the fact that his leaf artifice had after all managed to bail her from an impending death. Now with his ticket to redemption made, he embraces death like a blanket of warmth for there’s nothing else to look up to in his life.