Labour of Love (Asha Jaoar Majhe) is one of those feel-good movies. It does not say much but still says a lot. It takes one on a journey that is unexplainably beautiful in its rather simplicity. Aditya Vikram Sengupta’s work reminds me of the masterpieces of Satyajit Ray and Ritwik Ghatak. The realistic element makes one appreciate cinema, the beauty in everyday life, and normal people. Cherishing the “normality” of life and embracing the rather beauty in the “mundaneness”. This story just isn’t about love, but how we as humans actually embrace that love. How dealing with the everyday hustle of life, we see love flourish for a very brief moment that feels like “forever”.
The Life of the Characters in Labour of Love
We start off with the first shot as it pans to our supposed protagonist of the story and her walking to work for a good amount of time. The shots are beautiful and calming in their nature, where it silently follows our lead and goes on a journey with her. The mundane life has a rather relatable nature. We see her changing trains and taking a good amount of time to reach her workplace. There, she works as a manager, I suppose, in a bag manufacturing factory.
Then the scene cuts to our other lead, who is our main love interest. And he seems like he just came back home where he changes his work clothes and showers. We see him eat the food left for him and try to get some sleep in the morning which we witness is rather hard for him. Because for anyone it would be hard to sleep in the morning. But it also tells us that he has a job that requires him to stay up all night, which just means he works a night shift. And we find out he works in a printing press at night.
These little details about the characters we find out just by following their entire day where both of their individual stories go parallel to each other. Where on hand we see the woman played by Basabdatta Chatterjee and the man played by Ritwick Chakraborty, we also see how their work-life affects their relationship with each other.
The Forest of Love
Then comes the most beautiful part of the movie where the man is back from work in the morning and the woman is about to leave for work and they meet for a brief moment. And the shot cuts to them in a forest with a setting of their bedroom. We see her get ready and he helps her out. But this moment is so special and pure that it warms one’s heart. The way that it shows how the leads forget about all their worldly worries and the mundaneness for this very brief moment is so wholesome. Nothing else seems to exist in the world except them. And that’s all that matters. Even if for just a moment, they are together and that is all that matters. Their love for each other is beyond what words can express. And their gestures are all that matters to explain that moment.
We see this forest appear earlier in the movie as well where the protagonist finds himself all alone in the forest dreaming. Showing the loneliness he feels without her. And not being able to spend time with the one he loves. But Aditya Vikram does a great job in conveying his emotions when he is no longer in that forest alone. Rather than a deserted lonely place, this forest now becomes a place of peace and quiet for both of them.
We follow a love story of these two souls that are connected yet separated from each other because of reality. We see how they go through their day alone and when they can be finally together. The love that they share is beyond words. And small gestures like cooking for each other, and indirectly helping each other out say a lot about the care they have for each other.
Also, the way they would call each other up to wake them from sleeping is just a simple yet powerful depiction of their love. They do not need big gestures to show their love. Even when they are not together, they are reminded of each other.
And there is obviously a rather capitalistic aspect to this movie which obviously becomes an obstacle for them. And it portrays how difficult blue-collar jobs are from white-collar jobs. But despite this, they manage to create their own “utopia” with each other for when they can be in love and together.