Film Review: A Lullaby for Yellow Roses (2023): Enduring a soul-crushing trauma
Dipankar Sarkar, a noted Indian film critic and an alumnus of FTII, Pune writes on the film, A Lullaby for Yellow Roses by Rahul Roye.
Rahul Roye’s A Lullaby for Yellow Roses is a delicate drama exploring the wounds that befall a couple when they lose their child. It is a devastating phase in their life and the destruction that results in their relationship is unavoidable. Without adhering to a sentimental approach, the film allows the viewers to follow the hapless couple's progress in the wake of the tragedy. The film's primary traction is its subtle exploration of pain and suffering, which evokes empathy and compassion. This is a warm and touching tale that gives its characters room to reflect on how their mournful present doesn't have to determine their futures within the running time of around seventeen minutes.
Image: Film still
As they navigate the challenges of survival, Pankaj (Somnath Mandal) and Beena (Trimala Adhikari) are migrant workers, striving to find solace in each other's support and create a sense of bonding in a city bustling with dreams that attracts countless individuals seeking to turn their aspirations into reality. But at times, hopes are crushed under the weight of fierce competition and relentless challenges. The death of their child tests their resilience and determination. They try to negotiate with the crack that has formed in their relationship, altering the equanimity of their existence as married couples.
How the two characters cope with their misfortune is portrayed with raw authenticity, allowing viewers to connect with their experiences on a deeply emotional level. We observe the harsh realities of their working class consciousness with patience and witness their struggle to cope with their sadness with sensitivity. A film on the subject of grief is a tricky one to handle because it has the capacity to fill the screenplay with cliches. But Roye did not allow this to happen by repressing the story from revolving around cathartic revelations. There is a straightforward realism that highlights how the moderated performances from the actors create a fervent connection between a grieving couple who are under the presumption that sorrow cannot be shared with one another. It sincerely depicts the gnawing agony of an unfortunate situation by creatively fusing the images with the natural ambient sound design.
Image: Film still
The film's ability to capture the characters' inner struggles and unspoken emotions creates a profound account of forgiving oneself for inflicting pain on others. This artistic approach not only elevates the storytelling but also adds depth to the overall movement forward with the two broken souls, for whom fate had in mind an unlikely union. Both characters' determination to progress helps them find healing despite the emotional wreckage. Thus, the poignant tale serves as a testament to the resilience of the human spirit and a powerful reminder that love has the magical ability to heal deep-seated wounds. This is a kind of short film that touches on humanity, trauma, and connection and will appeal to viewers of contemplative, high-caliber dramas because it leans into those relatable complexities.
A Lullaby for Yellow Roses is selected for the competition section of short films at the 15th IDSFFK, Kerala.