Chhapaak is a very important movie because it's not just cinema but a very real story of a person who became an inspiration to millions. She has a smile so beautiful and soothing that her pain became our own.
The one scene in the movie that hit me the hardest was when Malti very politely reminds Amol that though he has empathy for acid attack survivors, he is not one of them. She is, and she doesn't want to grieve anymore, she wants to party.
This reminded me of something that happened a few years ago. One of my close friends lost her mother. She was of course devastated. She would cry and sleep throughout the day. She would eat whatever we put in her mouth without even looking at the plate. This went on for about fifteen days. On the sixteenth day, she went for a bath and came not in her pajamas but jeans. She looked at me and said, "let's go out for some pizza". I couldn't process it for a few seconds. She came again, "let's go to Domino's". I quickly gathered my stuff. It was a silent ride.
As we sat waiting for our pizza to cool down a little, she held my hand and asked, "I know it's too soon, but I want to move on. Can I?". I nodded and gave her a tight hug. There was a lot of talk among our common friends about how she got back on her feet way too soon and how it seemed her loss didn't matter much to her. We do that all the time. Don't we? We judge others sometimes for feeling too little, sometimes for feeling too much. We talk about how human emotions are so complex but other people's experiences are not real to us unless they are feeling exactly what we think we would feel in that situation and in an appropriate proportion.
Pain is not real to us unless it comes from a familiar place. Nobody chooses what they feel and how much they feel it but they choose their responses to those feelings. Some let their heart take all the time it needs to grieve, while others choose to not be upset anymore and pick themselves up. Both need strength and courage. We as fellow human beings can't share other's sorrow or lessen it no matter how hard we try. What we can do is, we can give them the courage and freedom to feel and to deal with those feelings on their own terms without any judgments.
Movie Review by Swadha Agrawal
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