It is rare that one gets to see an act of selflessness here in India and especially in the overcrowded metro cities. But movies give a way to depiction of such pure emotions with conviction. Children films especially have the ability to arouse plethora of emotions and leave us in awe. One such film that has left an impeccable effect on our minds is 1996 children’s film, Halo. Directed by Santosh Sivan this film has an ability to bring out the beautiful emotions.
Revolving around the life of a seven-year old girl, the film captures the purity of childhood. Baby Benaf Dadachandji gives a perceptible performance as Shasha who yearns for a selfless love. Having lost her mother in childhood, she craves for a motherly love. Her father, played by Rajkumar Santoshi, is always present for her yet the feeling of loneliness looms around this child. It so happens that a servant in Shasha’s house once tells her that a miracle will happen to her and she will come to recognize it with the halo that it shall have. Then enters a street puppy in Shasha’s life that is shown to have a halo when she first sees him. Considering it to be a miracle, she embraces the stray and gives him endless love. Halo becomes an indispensible part of her life. But Shasha’s life changes when Halo gets lost. She is terribly upset and so embarks on a quest to find her lost puppy. On the streets of Mumbai she comes across life and filth, this becomes a defining point in the story. However, when Shasha does find Halo she doesn’t embrace him this time around; she lets the stray find his way.
We are sure you wish to know why this child would let go off her priced possession. But the glory lies in the climax of the film. The beauty of childhood blooms fourfold when Shasha’s one gesture speaks volumes for her innocent yet matured soul. Shot realistically, the film is an instant timeless classic and very earthy. It is a collage of emotions- it can be funny and emotional simultaneously.
Speaking for the film, Sivan in an interview said, “The film is loud and down to earth, we have street urchins participating, and most importantly there is a humane feeling about it, there is a feeling of sharing, of love, despite all the madness in the film.” Sivan believes that there is no formula to success and after watching this film one realizes that simplicity is what made this film worthy of applause and accolades.
This is one film which has won National Award but we are sure you weren’t yet aware of it. Children’s Film Society of India (CFSI) produced this film. CFSI has been urging the new talents to come forward and bring innovation in this section of film industry. It even sponsors the films. However, we are yet to see films like Halo blooming on the Indian soils.
Meanwhile, we urge you all to give this exuberant film, Halo, a watch. Based on real life incident, this film is likely to leave you in tears and make you nostalgic.