Imtiaz Ali is in my opinion one of the most interesting filmmakers working in India today. If there is one quality that sets him apart, it is his unique way of looking at people and their perceptions. All of his films so far deal with love but they look at different kinds of love. Some modern, some traditional and a few somewhere in between. Today, I’d like to take a look at a scene from Tamasha: the one that leads up to the “Agar Tum Saath Ho” song.
If you were to convince someone to watch this film, show them this scene. What Deepika and Ranbir bring to the screen transcends acting. They become Tara and Ved and all traces of the star in them vanishes. The setup is that Tara has come to apologize to Ved and Ved does not really know how to express his emotions. There’s one particular line that sums up the whole scene. Tara says:
‘Koi complex hoga tumhaare andar, jisko maine touch kar diya…’
This acts as the trigger point as it angers Ved. His tone changes and the anger is visible in Ranbir’s eyes. It all comes to a boil when Ved says this:
‘Mujhena is waqt bilkul bharosa nahin hai ki main kaise react karoonga…’
Here is a man who is unsure of what he feels it comes out as anger and frustration. On the other hand we have a woman who is sure of what she wants to say and feel. She is concerned, worried about this man but also in love with him. It is a cocktail of emotions that is tough to deal with for her as well. She doesn’t want to let him go but he has to escape this situation as he himself says. Tara just wants to be with him but it is not possible at that moment. The shot of them lying head down with tears on their faces is one of the most soul crushing shots I’ve seen in recent times.
The perfect bookend to this scene arrives in the form a classic track by AR Rahman. “Agar Tum Saath Ho” is such a beautiful song on it’s own and when it gets added to the visuals, it becomes an unforgettable treat. This is the power of Imtiaz Ali, someone who takes a look at a situation and sees how different people would approach it. Tamasha was an under performing film at the box office when it released and that is a shame. We deserve to see more diverse love stories and as long as Imtiaz Ali is around, we have hope.