The Threshold is a Minimalist and an emotionally honest film.

Washed by the misty magic, of setting two characters; a broken relationship; in isolation…

Upon the infinite mountainous Himalayan terrains of Love…

A house that symbolized everything the two put in. Next to a peacefully stirring river… All planned and achieved with hard work; for retirement…

Still from the film

Still from the film

The sour taste of something that’s over. Without cause or reason. But inside yourself you have no more to give to the marriage. Neena Gupta’s sour face, and her body that has magically transformed into a fragile and old woman who has just finished even trying to look for the cause. She just announces it to her husband of 30/40 odd years. This the very day after their son’s wedding is over. What would’ve been a party a day before; is what the films opens out to…

But, as it opens out on screen, the weight of its text immediately takes the willpower out of my eyes in the darkness and the air conditioning of the theatre. And it starts.

With two masters of the art; Rajit Kapur and Neena Gupta who are completely the Jedis… They’ve valiantly fought off less visually evocative films before. Yes, I have pathetically extreme point of views. But I’ll take the risk, to spark some thought.

See that’s the thing.

When a film is made, it needs to make me watch it and hear it too. The sound was spot on, in the ambiance it created. But visually, I was not given a chance to see the actors in their elements. Their whole body, which is where the age of 60+ lay, was not given a chance to prove themselves. As the frame was always cut at the torso. Specially, when the characters are in transit from one space to another…

Still from the film

Still from the film

I remember the first thing a friend (who was co-audience at the film) said was – “If I would’ve closed my eyes even… I would not have missed anything… whatsoever…”

At the end of which came – “Beautiful story though…”

Somehow it feels like it would’ve been a better play. It reminded me of Herb Gardner’s ‘Im not Rappaport”… Though that’s much more adventurous a journey between two old people; who hate each other, but have no one else.

The evocative cinematic moments were the bare trees. The restrained camera that kept us from wandering off. The bare trees; leaf-less were both symbolic of what had ceased to be in the relationship, as well as the hope of another life, another few seasons with flowering leaves for the woman who finally decided to leave.

However; beautiful lessons I learnt about choosing to tell a story about characters who are beyond the age of 60.

The implication of the age of the characters poetically places them; on the edge of facing death as a finite reality, of not only having a past but also having enough light years of distance from it to learn from the past… Also a turn around completely. A getting back to being a child. This childlike wisdom; was what struck out as Writer Niharika Negi and Pushan Kripalani’s telling of this story. It was so nuanced, and subtle in the characterization… that all else can be forgotten.

I write this with much trepidation as I know how it hurts when its all there but not so much there as yet. But that’s life and cinema. It’s the bare trees… That scratch the sky or tap their slender fingers to the clouds, waiting in possibility of another spring…

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