“There are men who struggle for a day and they are good. There are men who struggle for a year and they are better. There are men who struggle for many years, and they are still better. But there are those who struggle all their lives: These are the indispensable ones.” – Bertolt Brecht
‘Outlines of Love’ depicts an internalized mode of struggle where hardships are inevitable and at times frivolous hiccups. A young man proceeds to reveal his sexual orientation to his grandmother, the person who had been the most intimate with him, over a casual cup of coffee. The director deliberately blends levity with seriousness. Brecht’s words have reached every casual ear, where a mortal encounters an impediment because he must. The movie offers a number of visually stunning shots. The use of bright colors in a number of frames indicate a painless synthesis of mirth with the drab realities of everyday life. Luka’s expectations are nothing out of the ordinary. Luca must fight both his inner and outer demons. In a scene a number of students appear seamlessly rebellious, almost to the extent of making rebellion appear mundane. The one thing that cannot be questioned however is their adroit sense of awareness. A pleasant afternoon , a conversation brimming with retrospections, the busy streets of London full of hope and despair , passion and tedium make up an atmosphere of paradoxes also known as life. The actors portray a plethora of emotions blending their personal gestures with the universal yet indifferent excess of the world outside. The background score however could have been less erratic. Notwithstanding the intent of highlighting the cacophony of life , the story must work in tandem with the score of a movie, especially if it follows the pattern of narrative storytelling.
The movie interestingly depicts mortal art in it’s dormant state, in order to extend it to the uninhibited domain of nature. The movements are sporadic which nonetheless induce a sense of befuddlement. Here every man is Joyce’s Stephen Dedalus, evident in the tears of Luka’s grandmother. The alienation of man is evident if not apparent. The plight of man in Nunes’ world has returned to the forgotten antiquities called hope and faith. The outlines of love are continuously struggling to erase themselves. It is evident in Luka’s denial of difference, his potent attempt to relocate the power centric definitions of bravado and the male machismo. Luka’s art is within his struggles, his love for the repugnant past, his belief in creation. In an indifferent world, a man dwelling on the outlines must take the decisive step of castrating oneself of the gaze of the oppressor. Nunes finds this rejection even in the apparently innocuous game of football. The bridge where Luka embraces his lover, is the bridge of the human mind in a constant process of flux. His grandparents still find the old gleeful child in Luka when he is kissing his lover, perhaps Luka does the same – a look both obscure and decisive.