India and Pakistan, when used together in a sentence, can only mean one thing – war. The deteriorated relations of the two countries are always in the news along with the ceasefire violation that is reported almost every week. Kya Dilli Kya Lahore – a play directed by Raunakk Kapoor and Jitendra Nagar – shows a different perspective of life at the border. It is an adaptation of the popular play, Naali Ke Kutte.
WHAT’S KYA DILLI KYA LAHORE ABOUT:
Two lonely soldiers – an Indian and a Pakistani – at a border post develop a friendship that transcends the animosity between their countries. A simple, yet touching story of their friendship is explored as they bet on cities in a game of chess, share childhood love stories, and listen to old melodies. Their discussion of the three wars of 1965, 1971, and Kargil adds a twist of comedy to the satirical narrative. The daily news of ceasefire violations and terrorist threats do not ruin their bond, which becomes an example of how love and friendship can transcend manmade borders.
The play is a comic satire that highlights how humans on either side of the border are the same. Their game of chess, cards, and mutual love for old songs is a classic example. The play manages to perfectly portray the affection between the two soldiers. Their camaraderie, even though they belong to enemy camps, is heartwarming. The short narrative hits the crucial theme of the problems and consequences of war, contrasting it with the pure and playful friendship of the two soldiers. The music used in the play is another aspect that gives life to the story.
WHAT COULD’VE BEEN BETTER:
The lighting in the play was a bit problematic. Some scenes started in the dark or were slightly delayed. But overall, there was some clever use of lighting that added value to the quality of the play.
WHY YOU SHOULD WATCH:
The play employs lighthearted comedy to talk about serious issues like the animosity between two warring nations. It makes you aware of the life of a soldier who away from his family, forming a bond of friendship with someone who is deemed as an enemy by everyone else. It makes you laugh and think at the same time. At the end of the play, you have a new understanding of how things work at the border.
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