A series of posts celebrating the various moods of love, the magician has managed to bring to celluloid screen over the three decades.

Episode 8: The shades of love culminating in the cuddle of death.

by Mani Prabhu

The Stage of Attraction

Amar in his late twenties has almost everything, a man could ask for – a loving family, a satisfying career as a program executive in the national radio station and caring friends around him. But yet, the spark is missing in his life. He is on his way to the north-east of India to cover the tribal festivities, when he encounters a mysterious woman for the first time in Haflong station. The moment he sees her, he knows somewhere deep inside his heart, that he had met the girl of his dreams. He can’t stop himself getting lethally attracted towards her, making him yearn for the slightest of conversations with her. He spots something in her eyes that tells him she likes his company. But, in a destined moment, she boards a train when he is least expecting, leaving him disappointed. May be, this was the shortest love story ever on earth, he sighs.

கைகள் நான்கும் தீண்டும் முன்னே

கண்கள் நான்கும் தீண்டிடுமே

மோகம் கொஞ்சம் முளை விடுமே

கண் பார்வை முதல் நிலையே

The Stage of Preoccupation

Life goes on as Amar reports for duty in the AIR office in Silchar. Fate has a strange way of jolting one out of an apparent anticlimax. Just like that day, when much to Amar’s amazement he spots the same girl again in town and attempts to approach her, only to get brushed away by the woman asking him to leave her alone. Amar is confused. Still something tells him that she likes him in some strange way, but why is she avoiding him? What is running in her mind? What is she scared of? Despite her discernible callousness, why is he preoccupied with her? Is he just another stalker? Or is she camouflaging her emotions in fear of something? Would finding more about her help? The questions taunting Amar seem to be endless. But the harder he tries not to think about her, the stronger she fills his memories. What kind of inhumane torture is this? Will this ever end? How?

ஆருயிரே என்னுயிரே உள்ளம் கொண்டது ஓர் மயக்கம்

இன்னுயிரே காதலில் இரண்டாம் நிலை தான் பால் மயக்கம்.

The Stage of Desire

Amar somehow lands up in the girl’s residence and learns that her name is Meghna. Still, he is not able to connect the dots when she asks him to get lost. Isn’t she at least curious to know his thoughts? She sure seems like running away from her own emotions. But all his questions come to a dead end, when she tells him that she is married. Shocked and perplexed at his decision to pursue her, he returns, but is soon attacked by some men, who asks him to stay away from Meghna, revealing in the process that she is still single. Amar is hurt, having been beaten black and blue, but even in the hospital bed, his elation knows no bounds. He is right probably. Meghna wants him to stop wooing her for some strange reason. But why can’t she just come out with it? But that moment, he kind of irreversibly falls in love with her, and decides to talk to her one final time. Much to his surprise, he finds her travelling with him in the same bus to Ladakh. Meghna is oblivious to his presence, but in a uncanny turn of events, introduces herself as Amar’s wife to a security official. Although Amar is not able to make sense of this unexpected development, his desire for her gets rooted in him, as her closeness sends magical shivers down his spine. He is falling for her, totally and irreversibly, one moment at a time. Would she understand his obscure pain?

மெய் தீண்டும் நேசம் தொடங்கியதோ

இது காதலின் மூன்றாம் படி நிலையோ

என் உடல் வழி அமிர்தம் வழிகின்றதோ

என் உயிர் மட்டும் புது வித வலி கொண்டதோ?

The Stage of Worship

As fate would have it, the bus to Ladakh breaks down on the way, leaving them stranded in the barren lands of the mountains. The passengers are left with no choice than to walk to the nearby Buddhist village. Meghna is initially reluctant to follow Amar, but finding herself with no other choice, decides to accompany him. While in the walk, in a sudden intense moment, Amar passionately asks her to accept his feelings for her, as he can see it in her eyes. We can see it too; but is Amar right in confronting her deepest conflicts with such blatancy? We wait for answers. But in another unforeseen turn of events, Meghna suffers a bad anxiety attack, which leaves Amar scared and baffled. What’s lying within her deep recesses of her psyche? But as they continue their journey, she lightens up a bit and we can see how cheerful she is, in his presence. What’s so disturbing about her? Is it her seemingly conscious attempt to shun smiles? How cold can she get? Her eyes gleam of love in a rare moment, while otherwise she is aloof. It’s no wonder why he finds her so alluring, despite the looming danger of getting hurt. He is unknowing loosing himself in her, trying to crack through the veil of hostility. In fact, he has started worshiping her.

நான்காம் நிலையை அடைந்துவிட்டேன்

என் நறுமலரே உன்னை தொழுதுவிட்டேன்

என் சுய நினைவென்பதை இழந்துவிட்டேன்

அந்த சூரியன் எழும் திசை மறந்துவிட்டேன்

The Stage of Surrender

As they walk through, Amar sees that she longs for a lot more than what she expresses in words. She opens up a wee bit in a split second, and as if hit by some external force, recedes back to her gloominess. He’s totally smitten by this woman, whatever she is made of. And her dark silence makes her all the more attractive for him. Surely there is something about her, that he still can’t comprehend; a girl who flashes a minuscule smile for a micro second, when she imagines something, that she thinks she doesn’t deserve, when Amar asks her to suppose two of them get married, and have kids. As if lost in her own world, she grins for the first time at him, hits him softly and almost goes into a blush. But the way in which she gets back her stoic nature almost instantaneously, makes her all the more enigmatic. After staying in a monastery for a day, Amar has almost submitted himself to her, to the extent that life without her now seems impossible. Meaningless. She has possessed him in a way that even Amar can’t make sense of. When he goes to sleep that night still reeling from her sudden closeness, he knows he has surrendered himself to her. To her magical eyes.

என் உடல் பொருள் தந்தேன் சரண் புகுந்தேன்

என் உயிரை உனக்குள் ஊற்றி விட்டேன்

இதுதான் காதலில் ஐந்து நிலை

நான் உன் கையில் நீர் திவலை

The Stage of Obsession

Amar wakes up the next morning only to find out that Meghna has left, with a message on the sands that love and agony cannot coexist in one’s eyes. He is literally broken, unable to come to terms with her sudden disappearance. As months pass, time heals some wounds within him and he slowly recovers. But flashes of Meghna continue to haunt him at the least expected times. He goes back to his home, where his family wants him to marry the daughter of a family friend. He is initially reluctant, but after considering his parents’ happiness, yields in to the proposal, albeit half- heartedly. But something very strange happens now. Meghna comes back to Amar’s house with a friend of hers, claiming they had lost their rented house, leading to her coming to Amar for help in employment in the AIR. Amar is instantaneously hit with a barrage of conflicting emotions. Why did she go away? And why did she come back to him, out of the blue now. She requests accommodation in his place for a few days, which further baffles him. Even as the wedding preparations are on, Amar cannot get thoughts about Meghna out of his mind. On one occasion, he confronts her again in a private moment and plays her one of their intimate conversations in a tape. As she listens to it in a headphone, he spots in her eyes an unstoppable urge to embrace him, but something is still stopping her, her face showing a thousand emotions. Amar gazes at her eyes as if compelling her to open up, but she is unfazed. But he has become fatally obsessed with her.

ஒரு மோகத்தினால் வரும் பித்து நிலை

இது மோசநிலை ஒரு முக்தி நிலை

நம் காதலிலே இது ஆறு நிலை

The Stage of Immortality

Amar can’t take it anymore. He relentlessly pursues Meghna and questions her cold decisions and motives. In a fierce altercation, she reveals to Amar, that, as a child, she had been raped by a few soldiers and that her soul seeks liberation through her suicide attack on the Indian army and the President of India during the Republic Day. She talks about her wounds and her pressing need to represent her people and their unheard voices. But, Amar is assaulted by Meghna’s brother and a few terrorists and as Amar fights back, one of the terrorists receives a call from Meghna on his mobile. Amar grabs the mobile and pleads in vain to Meghna to stop the killings and offers to move to a lonely place with her. His obsession peaks as he comes to know of the inevitable. He knows it would be tough to convince her of his true love, but he can’t give up, can he? He goes from strength to strength to stop the disaster, as he fights the militants with all his might. The next morning as Meghna proceeds for the suicide attack. Amar confronts her and strongly attempts to hold her back. The love is his eyes is evident, even though the glimmer of hope has vanished. He knows he is the only person in the world who can stop her. He forcibly embraces her and pleads her not to go away. There must a million thoughts running in Meghna’s mind in that antithetical moment. But she doesn’t fight back after a while, giving in to the passionate cuddle. The explosives tied to her chest go off, with the couple feeling their breaths. He had to drown his body in her soul. They had to sleep in the lap of death. It was, in a way, the inevitable.

இந்த காதலில் மரணம் ஏழு நிலை

இது இல்லை என்றால் அது காதல் இல்லை

உடல் மரிக்கின்ற காதல் மரிப்பதில்லை மரிப்பதில்லை

என் ஆருயிரே என் ஓருயிரே

The master had just deconstructed the different shades of immortal love.

Film: Uyire / Dil Se

Year: 1998

Cinematography: Santosh Sivan

Music: AR Rahman

Other Episodes:

Maniratnam and Romance – Episode 1

Maniratnam and Romance – Episode 2

Maniratnam and Romance – Episode 3

Maniratnam and Romance – Episode 4

Maniratnam and Romance – Episode 5

Maniratnam and Romance – Episode 6

Maniratnam and Romance – Episode 7

Maniratnam and Romance – Episode 8 (Final)