’96

About a Tamil movie but not a review…

Though purely a coincidence, some of us would have been school-goers in 1996, probably in 10th or 11th or 12th!

Photos freeze time. So do our minds! It freezes the moment and the person we experienced in good old days. For us, our classmates are classmates ever, however old we are. We introduce them as childhood friends or as classmates. We recognize and relate with them through the silly little things we did back then, at school - a simple and a touching emotion over which a storyline is beautifully crafted.

The director is in no hurry to rush with the movie. He takes time to get the audience more into their own feelings. He brings in the feel of nostalgia and the longing of those times – to rewind to the captured moments in our hearts, after 20 years. It definitely needs time. He wants the audience to feel the emotions seeping in and also feel with Ram, as he walks around ‘his’ school – drinking water from the tap, walking along the corridor, conversing with watchman anna and pulling close the class desk – to take us to ‘our’ school moments.

Ignoring the love part, Janu and Ram’s conversation reminds me of some overnight conversations with friends when we meet after long years. Though we might have had many lengthy night outs with many friends, there are select ones with whom we want to rekindle the memories, relive the emotions and reframe the moments from the time we lost in touch. We feel as if we have gone back in time and talk about what happened from that time. We talk about the nots, the what-ifs, the buts in life. How life led us to what we are today and that venting out moments of what was bothering us for years will definitely be a part of the conversation. We know nothing is going to change yet we just want to express our feelings even after years. We go for a drive or a walk, have a tea or dinner, take friends to the place we like. We know tomorrow we are going to say good bye and continue with the usual life but tonight is for just us. We want to make the most of it, when we are near each other. We even brood about our life sometimes.Not that we don't like it but compared to the present one that seems boring...These are simple things rekindled through a love story on screen.

As this is not a review, I have only extracted the part of an individual who amidst his different phases of life happens to revisit his school, evokes his good old school days and gets in touch with his friends and longs for that one relationship from school.