Does Love Get Forgotten, Or Always Bid For More Time?

Interior Cafe Night

Once upon a time, there were two people. People who loved each other with all their heart and soul, and promised to stay together, come what may. However, circumstances forced them apart. And a love that could have been great, diminished itself by losing all its glory. Love that got away.

Ever wondered about the one that got away? You fall in love, you be in love, and you promise to keep loving each other. But what about when circumstances force you to move away?

We have seen or heard of such stories, when circumstances and certain compulsions drive people away. Does love abide by some convenience factor that often gets looked away? Should we fall in love because of its convenience?

There are many love stories in the world, but one that stands out are the ones that survive the trails of time, and create another history altogether, in their not-so-massive but effective way. There is always a certain degree of honesty to such stories, and this was beautifully captured by Adhiraj Bose’s Interior Café Night. From the YouTube channel LargeShortFilms that gave the masterpiece Ahalaya starring Radhika Apte in 2015, comes another brilliant short film, which captures the essence and the pain of unrequited love.

Set in a quaint little café, the film revolves around two middle-aged lovers reuniting after three decades. The couple is played by Naseeruddin Shah and Shernaz Patel, who wonderfully depict the hesitance, the euphoric peace, the eagerness to catch up, the what-ifs, and the absolute sense of disbelief tinted with hope of reuniting again.

In a parallel narrative, there is a young couple played by Naveen Kasturia and Shweta Basu Prasad, bearing the consequences of a relationship meeting its untimely end. What could have been a long lasting beautiful relationship, eventually ends up being an incomplete love story, unable to pass the tests of fate.

Compared to the other table, this one has an air of sadness hovering over it. There is the air of calmness around the middle-aged couple as they see each other after having been through so much in their respective lives; the younger couple has an air of frustration, heartbreak as they simply see this separation as a loss they might not be able to deal with.

As we progress in the tale, we understand that middle-aged couple was once the anguished one. The story told by Naseeruddin Shah is all neatly encompassed within the wrinkles around his mouth, or enveloped by those tired sighs and shrugs of incompleteness. While in present they are looming over the thought of what to do next, in the past, the youngsters are saying their goodbye which is heartbreakingly depicted in their desperate kisses and tragic half-sentences.

Adhiraj Bose’s direction is keenly observed, there’s a lot of attention to detail. The sound design for the film is impeccable, as it nicely weaves in the awkward silences of a cafe between the two sets of lovers dealing with different circumstances of their relationship. The actors do a supremely good job in speaking for the characters without having to build a background for them. With a single nod, Naseeruddin Shah communicates his heartbreak, which he has been nursing for so long, while Shweta Basu is just close to perfect.

This is a warm little film about love, loss, and redemption. Making us think, if in the first go we couldn’t fulfill a love that was set for eternity, universe does give us a second chance.

But the task of using that second chance is up to you- either to make the run, or to just abandon it. After all-

To burn with desire and keep quiet about it is the greatest punishment we can bring on ourselves.