Romanticising Romance

As I walk up the dark cinema hall aisle, the screen light falls on people sitting. I don’t notice whatever I don’t notice; but I do notice some hands holding each other, heads resting on shoulders, arms entwined, shoulders touching, and before I realize it, I am looking for my seat. As I move on with life in such small steps, it hits me that I miss being in love. I don’t miss any specific detail. I just miss the feeling. That’s just it.

What is this feeling? Is it another emotion that cannot be explained? or is it possible to break it down into more rational axioms and understand it better? I am tempted to say that it could be beyond both; but then, I can’t see what can lie outside the inexplicable-explainable spectrum. Continuing that particular sidebar, I am not sure about my feelings for epistemology either; but well, for now, let’s cut to Jack Rabbit’s Slim’s:

Mia: May I ask you a personal question cowboy?
Vincent: No.
Mia: Alright. Have you ever been in love?
Vincent: I said ‘No’.
Mia: Don’t be so testy. It’s not that one; this is a different question.
Vincent: Still seems personal enough.

Mia: Ok.
Vincent: Love is a commodity.
Mia: Warming up; aren’t we? A commodity, like, for sale?
Vincent: Sale, discount, retail, designer, factory seconds, et cetera, et cetera. They sell. You buy.
Mia: Me?
Vincent: Yeah, you.
Mia: What if I want to buy?
Vincent: Yeah, it looks like you have, already.
Mia: Good one.
Mia: So, I bought it. Let’s say designer. Do you have a problem with that cowboy?
Vincent: No, I don’t. My problem is not with you. My problem is with the next woman I want to fuck.

Cut back to blog-post. Insert some dialogue here which deconstructs love along the lines of how much paper, screen space, and network bandwidth it has wasted. I have taken this quasi-Nihilistic kind of approach too. But, the blissful irrational happiness and the forlorn feeling surrounding it (on the timeline): that’s undeniable. Also, rational reasoning along the lines of loneliness, hormones, progeny, and other facets (unexplained in their own right) is also appealing.

I have 3 options: a) Don’t bother either thinking or feeling. b) Feel. c) Think.

As the camera zooms out and credits start to roll, a pencil is seen shading option (b).

Up, arranged, and re-chopped

Jadav (Bhatt ko) – Pralaynath Gendaswami kaise dikhta hai?
Bhatt – Kya?!?!
Jadav – Kis desh se hai tu?
Bhatt – Kya?!?!
Jadav – “Kya” naam ka koyi desh maine to nahi suna? “Kya” mein Hindi bolte hai kya?
Bhatt – Kya!!
Jadav – Hindi maadarchod!! Hindi – Tu bolta hai kya use?
Bhatt – Haan!!
Jadav – Toh tu jaanta hai ki mein kya bol raha hoon
Bhatt – Haan!
Jadav – Bol ki kaise dikhta hai Pralaynath Gendaswami
Bhatt – Kya?!
Jadav – Ek aur bar “Kya” bol, Ek aur bar “Kya” bol – mein tujhe chunauti deta hoon, mein tujhe dugni chunauti deta hoon maadarchod. Ek aur baar “Kya” bol saala!
Bhatt – Kaala hai!
Jadav – Aur????
Bhatt – Takla hai…
Jadav – Kutti ki tara dikhta hai kya?
Bhatt – Kya?!?!
Jadav Bhatt ko kandhon pe goli maarta hai…
Jadav – Kutti ki tara dikhta hai kya?
Bhatt – Nahin?!?!
Jadav – Toh phir kutti ki tarah usko chodne ki koshish kyon ki tune?
Bhatt – Nahin, maine nahi kiya
Jadav – Haan tune kiya!!! Haan tune kiya!!! Bhatt, tune usko chodne ki koshish ki…
Bhatt – Nahin..
Jadav – Pralaynath Gendaswami ko yeh pasand nahi ki Srimati Gendaswami ke siva use koyi chode……….Tu Gita ko padta hai kya Bhatt???

Jules (Jadav) and Vincent could be two facets of any human being (say Impulse and Logic) trying to accomplish something for a higher control (Marsellus). Impulse fucks up (Vincent shoots Marvin), and somehow logic, with the help of some luck (Winston Wolf) gets them out of the situation. Butch (conscience) has some weird nostalgic attachment (the watch) which drives his value system. But he evolves from killing a boxing opponent (evolving conscience making mistakes earlier), to saving his worst enemy (the supreme magnanimous sacrifice). And of course, at some level, they are all controlled by/related to the higher power of Marsellus. Conscience (Butch) killing Impulse (Vincent) in an impulisve reaction (the toaster timer) has an element of Tony-Rocky-Horroresqe irony. If you like this pilot, I can churn out more.

Is it the deadpan dialogue? Is it the black humour? Is it the inexplicable element of style? Is it the countless references to American pop culture? Is it the seemingly arbitrary choice of music? Or is there something more to Pulp Fiction? An (over?) extensive philosophical analysis can be found at Pulp Fiction – The sign of the empty symbol (on MetaPhilm). This particular interpretation of the movie is all about how Jules and Butch start seeing more meaning to their lives as the events of the movie unfold in this almost meaningless fucked up order. Of course, if I tried hard – real hard, I could interpret movies like Hot Shots, Sholay, or Godfather in a similar vein. Any small sequence of events can be explained by some pattern or the other. So, is trying to find meaning in Pulp Fiction an exercise in futility? That’d be a damn shame. No “quack quack” any more; and so, here is my own allegorical attempt (a la Upendra’s Upendra)…

Anyway, as of today – Pulp Fiction is my favorite English movie. Jatin and I are attempting to translate it to Hindi, while keeping all the deadpan-ness and black in the dialogue.