Recently I reviewed the Hindi film Pink on Amodini’s Movie Reviews. It features a lovely poem, in Amitabh Bachchan’s voice, as the credits roll.
Here is the poem and it’s translation in English:
Tu khud ki khoj mein nikal // Go out, search for yourself
Tu kis liye hataash hai // Why are you so disappointed?
Tu chal tere wajood ki // Progress, for even time
Samay ko bhi talaash hai // Waits for you to prove your mettle
Jo tujh se lipti bediya // If chains bind you
Samajh na inko wastra tu // Don’t think of them as mere clothes
Yeh bediyaan pighaal ke // Melt these chains and
Bana le in ko shastra tu // Make them into your weapons
Charitra jab pavitra hai // When your character is pure
To kyun hai yeh dasha teri // Why are you in such a piteous condition?
Yeh papiyon ko haq nahi // These sinners have no right
Ke lein pareeksha teri // To question you
Jala ke bhasm kar use // Burn and turn to ashes
Jo kroorta ka jaal hai // This web of cruelty
Tu aarati ki lau nahi // You are not the faint flicker of candle-light
Tu krodh ki mashaal hai // But the raging fire of anger
Chunar uda ke dhwaj bana // Hold your scarf up like a flag
Gagan bhi kapkapaaega // And even the sky will tremble
Agar teri chunar giri // Should your scarf fall
To ek bhukamp aaega // It will cause an earthquake
Title : The Bridges of Madison county
Author : Robert Waller
Narrators : Kelli O’Hara, Steven Pasquale
Genre : Romance
Publisher : Hachette Audio
Listening Length : 3 hours 50 minutes
Rating : 2.5/5
Narrator Rating : 4/5
Francesca Jones is a housewife living in Madison County, Iowa. She meets Robert Kincaid, a freelance photographer who has come to the county to photograph its bridges. Francesca and Robert are attracted to each other, and in a whirlwind romance of 4 days (husband and kids out of town) realize that they are soulmates. Robert wants her to come away with him, but can Francesca leave her family?
So I haven’t seen the movie, but I’d heard so much about it that I decided to listen to the book first. I’m not very impressed.
I couldn’t get a sense of the book’s characters. Kincaid is painted in as a rather swashbuckling cowboy of sorts with sensitivity, intelligence, good taste and a decent sense of humor; the ultimate fantasy! Francesca, a farmer’s wife is apparently way more than that; she is worldly, with far more sophisticated sensibilities than her farming neighbors. I think of this as Francesca’s story but I can’t fathom what she feels. What makes her tick? Why is this the love of a lifetime? She gets him and he gets her. I don’t get either one.
I take this book at face value. While I get the enormity of the romance, I have rather flat characters to tie it to. I can’t root for either one. Yes I feel for them but in a rather distant way. The book doesn’t evoke any feelings – good or bad – in me. The ending makes me roll my eyes. Enough said.