I took my bag, wrapped it around my shoulder and travelled to all the dark corners of my mind without fear or anxiety. Now I had a lamp, a glorious fire ball capable of bringing forth the power of thought to any deep and shallow dark sinister part of my inner world. I derived that fire from ‘Poomaram’.
It is a Malayalam film that I watched recently. It entrenches us in one of the most fundamental, yet most rewarding product of civilisation – Art. Yet when the curtain falls, our mind is filled with an unspeakable joy, an unfillable void, and you understand why there is something called art. We flawlessly reach a vehement understanding about humanity, the emotional catapult that film brings in derives its strength from the same higher pursuits of a human being – the sense of being and life itself.
Poomaram is an intriguing journey of different colleges (prominently two colleges) to champion the University art festival. The film starts with a sculptor explaining to his kid about art- traditions, innovation and understanding. The ripples of the scene just reflects along in the entire film. The director slowly engulfs our mind in the meticulous planning and effort of students to claim the coveted championship. There are rousing speeches, but the exquisite emotional heft the characters lend to these moments magnetically pulls us into the film. There is no fourth wall, the film is the fourth wall. As a painter slowly unwravels his painting with broad strokes and simple lines, as the legato and staccato unwinds around these characters, we seem to forget the primitive nature of the films we are used to. We are driven to a meditative trance, often facilitated by poems, songs and visuals right out of an artist’s canvas. We close our eyes, let the film plant it’s seeds in our mind.
The honesty of the characters in certain scenes, the ease of portrayal would render us speechless. The tears that filled up my mind and eyes never dried up during the entire course of film. The tears were not a reflection of mere sadness rather it was the zenith of a feeling, a feeling that would gradually erode the individualist inside us, the teary eyes will look at everyone and everything differently- with a more tender and soft gaze of affection and affinity rather than with the scepticism and cynicism of millennials.
As the final moments draw close, we open our mind to welcome a more deeper and philosophical understanding of ourself- humanity. We might stop the marathon to prove the survival of fittest. We might even stop waging wars among ourselves, We might join hands, light candles and pray for a better us, a better me,a better you, a better world and then a smile visits the corners of our lips- we understand the meaning of title of movie- Poomaram.