A young girl kidnapped for ransom eventually falls for the abductor.
But, Highway is much more than that a story of Stockholm syndrome. It’s a beautifully crafted journey of freedom and liberation, presented through the eyes of an abducted rich girl who wants a house in the mountains, where she’ll cook and where her husband will graze sheep.
Written and directed by #ImitiazAli, whose #JabWeMet had already been listed in our #100Bestfilms, brings to us his most honest work as an artist, when he is not much concerned about his audience or the commercial aspects of his work; a kind of cinema which a lot of artists fear making.
Veera (#AliaBhatt), a rich high class girl living in metropolitan city, asks his NRI fiancé to take a on a ride as she wants to breathe in the fresh air. But this ride becomes a life changing journey for her when the same night she is abducted by Mahabir (#RandeepHooda). As the journey progresses, she starts liking the journey she is undertaking, much more than her own life back in Delhi. And in the captivity, she explores freedom.
Imitiaz Ali masters the art of telling love stories, and Highway is another example of it. Loosely inspired from the learning of Rumi and his love story with Shams (Though I feel most of his works are inspired from Rumi-Shams love story), Ali brings to us an extremely simple story, written with utter honesty with dialogues as simple as “Hum kya tameez dikhaane aaye hain?”, “Kaise kaise jagah hain is country mein!” and silences much powerful than words. Both the characters of Veera and Mahabir are such well written, and as the movie progresses you will start feeling what they are feeling.
To talk of the performances, Alia and Randeep both have done justice to their parts, and taken the film to another level. The music of the film is given by #ARRahman and lyrics written by #IrshadKamil. The music is of the film is so amazing that it becomes a part of the narrative and characters: be it the just the meditative music ‘The explosive silence’ or the funny depicted ‘Wanna Mash Up?’
It was said that this story was with Imitiaz for 15 years, and in these 15 years, it was also adapted from a TV episode of the same name (also written and directed by Imtiaz Ali), from the anthology series Rishtey, which aired on Zee TV. And seeing the result, I am glad that he had been patient; and let it grow with the course of time.
Highway bagged Filmfare of Best Actress (Critic’s choice) and Best Music Album for the year 2014. Also, Imitiaz, Alia and Randeep were awarded with Best Director, New Talent Superstar of Tomorrow, and Best Actor, respectively at the Stardust Awards.
As the movie ends, it seeds many thoughts in us, about the hypocrite society we live in, what love is, and what it is to be liberated. And isn’t that one of the major purpose of writing and making films: to leave us thoughtful along with entertaining?
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