"Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing
and rightdoing, there is a field.
I will meet you there."
Last night a bunch of us friends had been to watch the just released Hindi musical drama Rockstar. I had been looking forward to this since months because of the soul-stirring music of the legendary A.R. Rahman which is accompanied by the sonorous vocals by Mohit Chauhan and the poignant poetry of Irshad Kamil. One absolutely intoxicating trio that is! Now with all the Academy adulation and international accolades post Slumdog Millionaire, the home country had been missing the quintessential Rahman for some time (strange, that I should be talking from that perspective sitting here). His sheer brilliance lies in creating tunes where rhythm after rhythm the music just grows on you and crawls into your soul till you are left with nothing but raw, scathing emotions.
That said, I'm currently mulling over something rather perplexing. The Sufi ideology that pain and heartbreak are the utmost important ingredients for creativity is where the major plot of the movie whirls around. An artist, of whatever form his/her art is, must undergo a powerful emotional catastrophe in order to get truly inspired. That is where I got stuck, and still am. What if there is no internal conflict? How much pain is enough pain? Till what extent does one push oneself and the boundaries? Or should one just wait for the elusive muse of creativity?
In the movie, as an aspiring rock star, Jordan must let his heart ravaged and torn by the ruthless claws of love and rebellion. An Indian, albeit a bit patchy take on Jim Morrison, Rockstar portrays Jordan's tumultuous journey as he lives through it all - love and loss, fame and fortune, destruction and disillusionment. By the end of the movie, when the closing credits were rolling and Jordan was reciting the above quoted Rumi lines with a gnawing intensity, I could no more feel the world around me. Nor could I see it well with a pair of blurry eyes and a tight face. Yes, I do cry at movies but this one just went a tad further and woke up a sea of dormant emotions in me. Some other day I'll sing their moods here, but not now.
Here is one of the jewels from Rahman's eternal collection. Jordan, with his newfound success and staggering popularity, is unable to understand the ways of the world. He laments his inability to articulate the beauty of emotions surrounding him - "Jo bhi main kehna chahoon, barbaad kare alfaaz mere..." (Even though I try to say something beautiful, my words make it mundane and trivial...)
And yes, from now on I am a Ranbir Kapoor fan, stamped and certified. The boy sure has blossomed and how. He has so eloquently eternalised Jordan that it is difficult to get the character out of my head. He just sits there in his military jacket and Afghan pants airing his angst while I croon the songs again and again. And again.