Shoojit Sircar’s ‘October‘, like a delicacy prepared with tender care, over a steady low flame, manifests itself into a brilliant cinematic feast.
The film opens with a group of hotel management interns in New Delhi. The raw Delhi in ‘October‘ complements the protagonist Dan’s (Varun Dhawan) naive and innocent character, and like the season, the character develops into a concrete and established persona. Similarly, Shiuli’s (Banita Sandhu) character rhymes harmoniously with the other aspects of the season; Shiuli is portrayed as a taciturn who loves to collect jasmine flowers, which bloom abundantly during the North Indian winters.
Sircar has skillfully used the North Indian climate as a metaphorical tool to suggest varied emotions and personalities throughout the course of the movie. The film takes a tragic twist when Shiuli meets an accident during New Year’s Eve, which lands her in a state of comatose. The time of the year ironically coincides with this sad event. However, Sircar conveniently uses the same time to bring a heavy change in Dan’s attitude towards life. You don’t always get to choose your new year’s resolutions, do you?
Hence starts Dan’s emotional rollercoaster ride. The rest of the movie meticulously describes Dan’s relationship with Shiuli. Shiuli’s mother (Gitanjali Rao) is portrayed as a strong widow, who single-handedly manages the finances of the family, and carries the weight of medical expenses brought forth after Shiuli’s accident. Although Shiuli’s condition remains more or less the same for a major part of the movie, the background elements resonate of hope and life. After a long and harsh winter, there is always a spring lying in wait and carrying the same tone, the movie follows its script. ‘October‘ gently portrays that like the changing seasons, life too runs in circles. After all, no matter how long and dark the night is, dawn eventually breaks.