A Suitable Boy (2020) s01e03 Episode Script

Episode 3

1 - He's a Muslim? - Then let's go away.
If we go now, we don't stand a chance.
This is a great and much-needed reform, and I commend it to the House.
The Raja of Marh has mounted a challenge to your Zamindari Act in the High Court.
You shouldn't get too deeply involved with Saeeda Bai.
No good can come from it.
But I love her, Baoji.
This is your last night in my house! Get out of here.
Ul-husna You must go with Rasheed to his village.
You've done nothing to find a boy for Lata.
Fortunately for you, you have a very clever wife.
I still don't understand why you're rushing off to Uncle Sahgal's in Lucknow and leaving Lata behind with us.
It is Lata I am thinking of! If you cannot help find her a suitable boy here in Calcutta, I must look elsewhere! I am going to stay with the Sahgals and Kalpana will meet me there! She will help me.
Bye, beta.
I must leave you now, Lata.
Memsahib? Hello.
I was wondering if you'd like to do a bit of sightseeing.
I'd like to show you something of poetic interest.
Thank you.
Yes, that would be lovely.
Rose Aylmer was only 20 years old? Just about your age.
That's so sad.
What did she die of? A surfeit of pineapple.
I know, I know.
Not very poetic, but poor Landor.
This has turned into a rather melancholy outing.
All my fault.
I do apologise.
Let us quit this dismal scene, and ride home in our limousine.
Of course.
And now your mother has left for Lucknow.
Yes, mysteriously.
Calcutta, I regret to say, was a complete waste of time.
But now there are a number of good prospects for my Lata in Lucknow.
I am determined.
I won't give up in until I have found my Lata a suitable boy.
Do you know any? Please send me photos.
My grandfather, keeping Bengal just.
Hello, Lata.
Hello there, my dears.
Und sie auch standen da so stier Als wollten sie Ah! My sister Kuku and her German nutcracker.
Ja, neulich hatt' ich auch wohl drei Nun sind hinab die besten zwei He has a lovely voice.
Are you fond of Schubert? My father played him when we were young.
Ma prefers Indian classical music, and my youngest brother, he can't get enough of - Dou naina mitware tihare.
- Come on, let's go upstairs.
Let Amit and Lata have their own tete-a-tete.
Don't worry, Cuddles won't let them get up to anything naughty.
- Shall we have some of this? - I thought we were having tea.
This is Chatterjee tea.
Thank you.
You mustn't mind Bahadur.
He thinks I plan to marry everyone I bring home.
And do you? Not so far.
But he doesn't believe it.
Bahadur sees me staring at the moon and he thinks getting married will cure me.
What a crazy family you are! On the contrary, we're a hotbed of sanity.
Drink up.
What's that you're reading? - Quran-Shareef.
- Any good? Sorry.
SINGING: Chalo, chalo re kissaan - Salaam'alaikum.
- Salaam, Laali Mian.
Are you happy to be home? Yes and no.
Do you love your wife? [CRICKETS CHIRP.]
It is my duty to love her.
She was my brother's wife, and when he died, my mother asked me to marry her and give her little daughter a father.
I'm so sorry.
I'm used to it now.
And I do care for my wife.
Rasheed, will you teach me some ghazals tomorrow? When you've learnt your alphabet.
Sweet dreams.
Honestly, Ma, I didn't know they were like that.
I thought they were a decent family and that their son would be a fine match for Lata.
If my husband were alive, he might have been chairman of the Railway Board.
We'd never have to lower our heads before anyone, especially to people like these! I'd never have put you through it if I'd known they wanted a dowry.
Don't worry.
I have some other options to discuss with you.
I'm sorry, Ma.
You'd better show me suitable candidates when we reach my cousin's home.
Rupa, where did you go in this heat? Don't ask.
This is Kalpana.
She's like my daughter.
Greet Rupa Massi.
Pushkar, my son.
He's still a child.
Welcome, Kalpana.
You both can talk in the office.
Six feet two? He'd tower over Lata.
No, no, impossible.
Next one, please.
Too dark, too dark.
It might just be the light in the studio, Ma.
He's very personable.
He was leading man in a play I was in at university.
Lady Windermere's Fan.
He's too rich, Kalpana! This one won't want a dowry.
He's a good boy, meet him face-to-face at least.
He won't make Lata happy.
She would always be the poor relation.
If I liked him, it would only upset me.
Who's next? I'm taking you to a book shop where I spend half my life.
One feels so bewildered among all these millions of books.
You mean I, not one.
Kemon achhen dada? - You're such a pedant! - No, it's important.
Just imagine if I were to say to you, "One loves you".
Or worse still, "One loves one".
Doesn't that sound idiotic? - Yes.
- That's all I meant.
I see.
Or rather, one sees.
I see one does.
Does a writer have to feel strongly about what he writes? Not necessarily.
Sometimes I write best about the things I care about least.
And of course what is most frustrating is failing to write well about the things or the people one cares most for.
I'll give you a book of my poems sometime, and you can form your own opinion of how much or how little I feel.
I would love that.
But why not now? I need time to think of a suitable inscription.
Hmm? Hm.
He's nice! No-one else? Well There is one more we could try.
A very nice boy.
Haresh was at school with me in Delhi.
- Acha? - St.
Kalpana was debating champion! And what did you do after that? Well, after University in Delhi, I went to England to study shoe manufacture.
At present I'm working for the Kanpur Leather and Footwear Company.
I've only been there a year, but I have established a whole new department and got them orders they didn't have the know-how to get for themselves.
Haresh, have you brought your certificates with you? How clever you are.
Northampton College of Technology.
First in his class and a silver medal, that is very good.
You should be very proud.
Of course, my late husband was first in his class at Roorkee, and a gold medallist.
He was an engineer on the railway.
- The railway! - Mm-hm.
I wish I could have met him, Mrs.
I wish so too.
He waters our fields.
That's his whole life, serving my father, farming land he will never own.
I hate to see the suffering here.
I keep trying to think what I can do to change it.
Perhaps your father's land bill will make a difference.
- Perhaps.
- But my father will not allow it.
- Zamindars, they do nothing - but make their living from other people's misery.
And they try to force their sons into the same ugly mould as themselves.
And if their sons want to do anything else, then they make life miserable for them, too.
So much poverty.
We have to do something for my people here.
Rasheed? Will you help me write a letter? Arrey Maan Sahib! There are many other sorrows in this world besides love.
Rasheed! [SINGING:.]
It will take years to teach you this beautiful language.
That's very good.
Put that in.
You don't share my feelings for Saeeda.
Do you? Ah.
The sister, Tasneem.
Don't worry, your secret's very safe with me.
There's nothing She doesn't You mean you haven't told her yet? It's out of the question.
She could never think of me like that.
It's hopeless.
Hey! What are you doing, that's my letter! Firoz was going to deliver it to Saeeda! A very go-ahead young man, Kalpana.
And quite handsome, though he's rather short.
I was so taken with him.
He was very taken with you.
He said you were strikingly good-looking.
Oh, stop your nonsense.
But why was he not at the top of your list? Well, he was in love with a Sikh girl at one time.
But I think that's over now.
Her family wouldn't have anything to do with it.
You know, I think he might be just the boy for Lata.
Not like that brother of Meenakshi's.
- Amit Chatterjee? - Mm.
He's a famous poet, Ma.
Famous poet! All he does is sit in his father's house and stare out the window! A young man should do a job and earn his living.
I should like you to set up a meeting for Lata with Haresh.
God forbid that another one of my children should marry a Chatterjee.
Ma! Dada, ekta golab din.
Thank you.
Enter the heroine with a flower in her hair.
Oh, I forgot it was still there.
More to the point, how did it get there? Oh, Amit bought it for me.
We had a lovely day.
Brazen girl! What would your mother say? Kapoor Saab! Kapoor Saab! You did a good thing there, Kapoor Saab.
You showed that bloody bastard what was what.
What? Who are you? I'm Waris.
I'm the Nawab Sahib's man here.
Ha-ha-ha, that munshi he was pissing his pants! I was out of control.
I could have killed that man.
No-one would be sorry if you did.
You will be a hero here now.
In these parts, everyone will follow you! [THEY SHOUT.]
Have you brought a message from your father? My father? No, this is a letter from Maan Maan Kapoor.
Oh! Give it to me.
Have Have we met before? Tasneem! Thank you for bringing the letter.
Now I wish to be alone.
I'm very sorry if I offended you.
- Zia Sahib? - Ji? You have not offended me.
Khuda hafiz.
Khuda hafiz.
And how is our boy Maan? He's still in the countryside.
His obsession with that woman was becoming altogether too much.
I gather Firoz visits there too.
What? I don't mean to suggest he's as big a fool as my boy.
I don't want him anywhere near that house.
Minister Sahib? These are our private lands.
The law cannot loot them, and political mosquitoes like you cannot touch them! We will see.
No doubt your lawyers will defend your highness today as ably as they have defended your lowness in the past.
Do something! - Patience.
Patience, sir.
- Father, I'm here.
Today, a judgment has been reached, the act created by Mahesh Kapoor which seeks to distribute wealth away from the zamindars of the state.
An appeal by the Raja of Marh attests this act is unconstitutional and therefore null and void.
Null and void! We adjudge that the Purva Pradesh Zamindari Abolition and Land Reforms Act does not contravene any provision of the Constitution.
The appeal by the Raja of Marh is dismissed.
What? What happened?! What did he say?! [HE WHISPERS.]
Lata, come to Lucknow urgently.
Needed here now.
Love, Ma.
Lata, say hello to Uncle Sahgal.
Shall I bring the photo album? You see my luck? With Maya as a wife, I have to do nothing! I worship her as a goddess.
What a lovely young lady you have grown into.
I remember the first time you came to stay, when you were just a tiny girl.
And you and your cousin, Kiran, played together.
Do you remember that, Lata? Yes, of course.
Do you remember, Kiran? Yes.
- Thank you so much.
Come here, Lata.
Let's see if we can find you.
Here you are with Kiran.
Not so long ago.
And look at you both now.
Beautiful young ladies, embarking on the journey of life! [HE LAUGHS.]
Lata a first-class student, and Kiran about to get into university here in Lucknow.
So, let us hear about this shoemaker your mother tells us you are going to meet.
Ma! I know all your prejudices, and I share none of them.
You brought me here under false pretences.
If you had told me the real reason you wanted me, I would never have come.
You know, Lata, I have nothing against Mohammadans as such.
It's only your future I'm concerned about.
And this is why you summoned me from Calcutta? It's very expensive to send details in a telegram! And this boy is from our community.
Anyway, he's such a nice boy.
You'll see.
- Aadaab.
- Aadaab.
I'm very happy to see you.
Your sister is well? Thank you, yes.
- And you are well? - Yes, I'm well.
Your parakeet he is well? Him too.
He is my darling.
He is well.
And you, Sahib, you are well? I am very well.
Good stuff.
Dagh Sahib.
Kapoor Sahib! Kapoor Sahib! Your fame has spread far and wide! The whole district is talking about how you almost half killed that bastard! And you know what they are saying? Good job I didn't, or it would have been the finish of me.
"I, The Jury".
And Maan Sahib is judge and jury! I'm neither of those things.
You look very nice, Sahib.
I don't need your opinion.
But thank you.
Have we met, Miss Mehra? I'm sure I must have seen you before.
I don't think we have.
It's strange.
Perhaps I met you in a dream.
Did you have a comfortable journey? Yes, thank you.
I had a comfortable journey.
Where were you travelling from? Calcutta.
Then you must be really tired.
No, I'm quite rested.
Even though Kalpana is leaving, could I invite you both to my boarding house for lunch? - Ah, no, we - Yes! We'd be very happy to accept.
Thank you, Haresh.
Tell me, why did you run away from home at 15? - Did Kalpana tell you that? - She did.
I believe a time may come when a man may have to part company, even with those he loves and who love him.
In this case, a marriage was being forced upon me by my foster-father, and I couldn't accept it.
I ran away.
I got a job cleaning a Praha shoe shop my first experience in the shoe business, and not a pleasant one.
I starved and I froze, but I was determined not to go back.
Didn't you even write a letter home? No.
I was very stubborn.
This is where I sleep.
Let me ask you a question, Haresh.
Is there someone in your life still? Mrs.
Mehra, I have told Kalpana, and I'm sure she's told you, that Simran was very dear to me.
But now that door is closed to me.
For her family, the fact that I'm not a Sikh is all that matters.
So now I'm looking for someone with whom I can live a happy married life.
I see you like Hardy.
I do.
But I don't agree with him that we are controlled by fate.
I think we can make our own happiness.
Would you like to come and see where I work? I would like to see the factory.
But could I first ? You have so many shoes! Well, I am in the trade.
Are you making fun of me? Yes, perhaps I am.
You've earned such respect here.
You have a lot of your father's qualities, I think.
Me? He would laugh to hear you say that.
You should take yourself more seriously, my friend.
Will you come with me? - If you think I could make a difference.
- You can.
- Maan Saab! Maan Saab! - [BEEPING.]
She's sent for me! Parhiye.
Dagh Sahib No-one listens to me here.
I have learnt to be alone and to understand things.
And even to be alone and to be misunderstood.
But with you by my side, we can bring your father's dream to life, give Kacheru the land he deserves.
Saeeda Begum is my life.
And she has called for me.
This is the upper.
This is what we are working towards.
This is the setting and the drying process.
The stench! Mrs.
Mehra, this is the tanning process.
Please be careful.
Next comes fat liquoring, samming, dyeing, setting, drying.
Fascinating! This is how they weigh the lime hides.
Mehra, we have Haresh, Haresh, I think we should go now.
Ma is not feeling well.
Nonsense! And I too Oh, the smell.
Of course.
You should have said before.
I will take you back at once.
Thank you, Haresh.
And, er You don't work in the tannery, do you? You are in the office? No, I'm only in the tannery about once a week.
Once a week? - Miss Mehra - No, no, no, call her Lata.
When I returned from England, I realised the British left us free, but barefoot.
India needed shoes.
I am proud of the shoes I make.
I don't like sitting in the office giving orders and expecting miracles.
I believe, if you have to do something, you should do it without making a fuss.
I'm sorry, that's the way I am.
I thought I would say goodnight to my darling daughter before she fell off to sleep.
Well? Mm? Yes, Ma? Do you think he's suitable? Ma, I only met him for a few hours.
What do I really know of him? You're a very fussy and ungrateful girl.
Mausa ji? Are you all right? Are you ill? No, not ill, exactly.
But I have been working late.
I have a great many things on my mind.
I hope everything is all right.
Do you have what you need? Yes, yes.
Thank you.
I should have brought you some grapes.
When you were a little girl you were very fond of grapes.
Are you Are you a good girl, Lata? Yes? - Do you think? - No! I think you are a lipstick girl.
Are you a lipstick girl, Lata? - I don't know what you mean.
- Yes, you do.
I think you are a lipstick girl.
Do you want some lipstick, Lata? Please stop this! It's so hot in here.
Go away! I'll scream! - No need for that.
- I will! Shh! I thought you were an intelligent girl.
If you had a father, you would not behave in this way.
I am very disappointed in you.
Tell us about the Pul Mela, Bhaskar.
Why do all these people come to Brahmpur? The River Ganga came out of Jahnu's ear and fell to the ground.
That day was known as Ganga Dussehra, and that is why we celebrate her.
Well done, Bhaskar.
You may as well ask blessings from a stone.
You're sounding like your father.
- Or a potato.
- Pran! Come on.
You shouldn't be so proud, Pran.
Lata, why aren't you eating your toast? It'll get cold.
Something's the matter, I can tell.
What is it? Nothing, Ma.
I just didn't sleep last night.
Sahgal Sahib also didn't sleep last night.
- He's tired from working so hard.
Paratha? I was thinking wouldn't it be a good idea if Kiran came to Brahmpur University next year? She could live with us.
No, no! Not possible.
Her father would miss her too much! - Good morning, everyone.
- Aaye! Good morning, Sahgal Saab.
So how is the family today? - Barriya.
- Good.
Good Achar? See what I have got for Lata.
You will have to wait, Kiran.
No! Lata! - I don't want it.
She is such a clever girl, I thought.
You open it.
I thought I would give her a puzzle.
Sahgal-ji, you've done so much for us.
When the time comes, Kiran can live with us in Brahmpur.
Let us do this for you.
Now we are in plenty of time.
Here in the waiting room, you can be comfortable.
Thank you, Haresh, you're a very good escort.
I think you are not well today.
I hope the tannery didn't upset you yesterday.
No I just didn't sleep well last night.
Let me get some cold chocolate for you.
It's very refreshing.
I know that not everything went well yesterday.
But I want you to know I like you very much.
My interest is sincere and serious.
May I write to Lata, Mrs.
Mehra? Yes, you may, of course, Haresh.
And you should call me Ma, everyone else does.
Are you sure? Thank you.
Stay there a moment.
I will check the platform.
Well Au revoir, Lata.
- Are we French now? - No.
But it sounds more hopeful than goodbye.
Au revoir, Haresh.
Baba-ji? - Salaam, Baba-ji.
- Dhanewaad.
Wah, phool! Dhanewaad.
HE CHANTS: Ram, Ram, Ram, Ram, Ram, Ram, Ram, Ram Aaiye.
Ma, chaliye.
Dhanewaad Dhanewaad [SHOUTING, COMMOTION.]
Ma! I'm all right.
I'm all right.
- Bhaskar! - Bhaskar! Bhaskar! Bhaskar! [SCREAMING AND COMMOTION.]
Bhaskar! Bhaskar! [SCREAMING.]
SCREAMING: Bhaskar! Because of the Pul Mela disaster.
I do not need to be told what my job is! Firoz So, is it all over between you and Kabir? A shoe maker.
I refuse to work at this benighted place! - If music be the food of love - Play on! [ALL CHANT.]

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