|Directed by||Imtiaz Ali|
|Produced by||Sajid Nadiadwala
|Written by||Imtiaz Ali|
|Music by||A. R. Rahman|
|Editing by||Aarti Bajaj|
Filmmakers are creators, filmmakers are magicians and filmmakers are people, who can, at times create something that you wouldn’t wanna see and what is that? The Reality!
Imtiaz Ali is one filmmaker I genuinely admire a lot, specially because he has always made films on love. No, that’s not the only reason. The reason is that he has always presented love in a distinguishing manner. Always! Be it Socha Na Tha, which unfortunately failed at the box office, even though it was a delightful tale. Or Jab We Met, that till date is one of Bollywood’s best rom-coms. How can we forget Love Aaj Kal? And Rockstar? And Cocktail?
This man has always shown us the dimensions of love and differently, every single time.
Filmmakers usually write a lot of scripts but don’t start working on them immediately. Specially in our country because our cinema has always been stereotypical. We were stuck in that masala zone, since forever? That is why, till date we haven’t seen different stories and out of the box films. 15 years: It is A LOT. I was nearly 4 when Imtiaz Ali actually thought of this film called Highway! And after these terrain struck 15 years, he finally made this film with an unconventional pair and a really raw actress, i.e,Alia Bhatt.
WHAT IS HIGHWAY ABOUT?
At times, we don’t actually know what we want. We just want life to move on in the same way: Smoothly and softly, to a place where we can find peace, as today’s world, it has become immensely rapid. Highway is like this substantial and unconventional journey of two completely different individuals, who are unknowingly similar. They had a bizarre childhood and that’s the reason they are what they are today and that’s the reason they connect, that’s the reason they unconventionally start feeling for each other and that’s the reason they become each other’s strength.
It is about human beings, it is about emotions, irrespective of their class and upbringing. A girl who has been kidnapped, why would she enjoy her bondage? Why would she feel safe and comfortable with her abductor? Why would an abductor thrash his man for misbehaving with the girl he kidnapped? One answer for all these questions. “Humanity” is the answer.
Highway steals the show with every single frame. It has the realistic and situational humour that can charge you up in seconds, it has the emotional sector that’ll make you think, think really hard, about our society, about our country and how we behave like hypocrites and cowards whenever someone does something wrong and cheap, specially to a girl or a woman. It’ll haunt you after you come out of the theatre and it might just change you as a person, if you really watch it with an honest appeal.
Randeep Hooda is known for his rugged looks and different films, but, he has never really received enough acknowledgement and applause for his work. I am sure Highway will change his fate and he will finally get what he deserves. Nobody else could have played Mahabir better than him. He is natural, he is strong, he is frustrated but at the same time, he is like this little child who has lost his path in life, thanks to his turbulent childhood.
Randeep’s mentionable scenes: The scene where Mahabir slaps his man for trying to misbehave with Veera. He furiously tells him that she’s not a slut, she is a normal girl. That scene symbolised that Mahabir is just a kidnapper and a goon but not an inhuman monster.
The scene where he smiles at Veera for the first time, whereas, she is literally howling. Another scene where Mahabir leaves Veera and begs her to go. Last but not the least, probably the best scene of the film: The scene where he looks at Veera, as she prepares food and puts some kaajal or something and he is suddenly in tears, howling and crying, thinking about his amma. Randeep Hooda, you’re a genius.
Alia Bhatt, the 20 year old Jennifer Lawrence of Bollywood! I still get goosebumps when I think about her performance in Highway. This is Alia’s actual debut film. She is an ACTRESS, yes she is. This is an award winning performance and no other actress could have pulled this off, I can bet a zillion bucks after watching Highway. The film actually belongs to her. Veera is Alia and Alia is Veera. From the first shot, till the very end: Alia burnt the screen throughout. Be it the bubbly-ness or the dumbness or the molested victim or the girl who wants freedom, she has played it all.
Alia’s mentionable scenes: Even though most of her scenes are to watch out for, some of the revolutionary scenes were: The scene where she unknowingly keeps running on a salt flat under a starry sky.
When Veera breaks down while telling Mahabir about how she was molested at the age of 9 and how she cried in pain but nobody heard, how she couldn’t do anything about it as her mother told her not to open her mouth. She’ll make you cry, she sure will. She makes you feel the pain of these unfortunate victims. Award winning scene.
When Veera is sitting on the rock and watching the water pass by, staring at it, totally confused and crying. Thinking about her life and wondering , how she actually took it for so long. Alia is MAGICAL!
When Veera tries to tell her dad about Mahabir and how the situation had turned different, whereas she was being given an injection. Even that scene exhibits real emotions and real curiosity. Blown over! And the confrontal scene where she finally speaks up about the molestation. It wrenches your heart and makes you wanna cry along with her, for all the victims and for all the people who go through that and for Veera’s victory.
Parineeti just proved that she is the best in the current lot but Alia Bhatt in Highway, it just gave us another contender.
All the character actors were amazing and the credit, yet again, goes to Mr. Mukesh Chhabra for putting up an amazingly talented cast!
I feel blessed that I got an opportunity to watch a film like Highway. I would do anything to watch such a masterpiece, again and again. All the credit goes to Imtiaz Ali. One film old, 20 year old Alia Bhatt couldn’t have come out like this, if Imtiaz Ali wouldn’t have been there to direct her and guide her throughout. This man is a sheer genius and deserves a standing ovation along with some bows for such a brilliantly put up film. The original score is as usual scintillating, it is A.R.Rahman, after all! The cinematography is one of the biggest highlights of Highway with so many symbolic shots and silent shots along with some beautiful shots of the intriguing journey. Capturing the movement of the clouds: My favourite visual! Anil Mehta, infinite gunshots for you, RESPECT!
How an abductor and a hostage become each other’s strength and change each other’s perspective towards life,during a beautiful and a visually amazing journey: That is Highway for you, it has a lot more which I can’t really put in words. It deserves to be watched, again and again.
P.S: It is not for people who like massy films, it is for people who like classy films.
Please take some time out and watch this masterpiece, it deserves it!