Ramala, a movie script

ACT-1
SCENE-I
EXT- A MAOIST-AFFECTED VILLAGE IN RUKUM, NEPAL- EVENING
The movie camera moves pan right to pan left, showing the
breathtaking landscape; tilts up and tilts down, showing the
scary twin helicopters’ flight and the innocent eyes of
children, women, and men while walking down the street. The
Maoists’ war is changing things in Rukum. The women are
carrying loads of fodder, wood or water along the windy
roads, sweating and panting.
INT- BHOLA’S BEDROOM- NIGHT
Bhola, 28, is recently married to Ramala, 19. It is the
seventh night of their marriage. Bhola plants a kiss on her
lips and sits next to her on the bed. Ramala is afraid of the
sound she hears.
RAMALA
What’s that? Again, the Maoists are
firing, huh?
BHOLA
It’s not a time to think about
firing, Ramala. Think about love
and life. Today is the seventh day
of our marriage, what do you think?
RAMALA
I am happy with you, but the guns
and bullets scare me.
BHOLA
I don’t like to think about this
fucking firing. One day, the army
men came to my house at four in the
morning. When my father opened the
door, they dragged him outside and
started kicking him like an animal.
RAMALA
Why didn’t you protest?
BHOLA
(sad and sombre)
How could I? The army men were so
vicious that they even manhandled
my mother.
(MORE)
My mother held onto the leg of the
main army personnel and pled, but
he just kicked her, saying, “fuck
you.”
RAMALA
(Shocked)
Why the hell did they do so?
BHOLA
They suspected us as Maoists.
RAMALA
And what about yourself? Didn’t
they do any injury to you?
BHOLA
They kicked me too. Oh, God! I
nearly died.
Bhola stretches his hand and turns on the radio.
THE RADIO’S VOICE
40 army men and 30 Maoist guerillas
were killed when the latter started
firing at police headquarters today
at 9 in the morning. The firing
continued for three hours. Now, the
curfew has been imposed, and the
situation has worsened.
Amid the horror, they sleep.
SCENE-II
EXT- OUTSIDE BHOLA’S HOME- MORNING
The day breaks, showing the sky yellowish in color. Women
wearing gunyu-choli(Nepali female dress) are walking down the
street to the jungle, carrying doko (bamboo-made object), to
fetch firewood. Children are with their mothers, wearing
ragged clothes. A cock cackles, reminding the daybreak. The
camera slowly moves to Bhola’s bedroom.
RAMALA
(To Bhola)
It’s time to get up.
(looking out through the
window)
See, the sun is already above us.
It’s time to go to the jungle and
fetch fodder and firewood.
2.
BHOLA (CONT’D)
BHOLA
Baby, Don’t disturb me. I am
dreaming of our honeymoon. You
don’t think of our honeymoon, do
you?
RAMALA
Food is more important than the
honeymoon. What are you talking
about? No more wood is left to cook
food, nor any fodder for cattle. Go
and get them first.
BHOLA
(Getting up from the bed
and stretching his body
and yawning )
I got it. I got it.
Bhola gets ready. He wears a lungi (a cloth for a male) and a
shirt, takes a doko, kisses Ramala, waves his hands, and goes
to the jungle.
RAMALA
(Waving her hand )
You take care. Get back
home soon.
Ramala starts cleaning house: removing cobwebs, sweeping the
floor, washing dishes, and making tea for her old parents-inlaw.
It’s already 1 o’clock in the evening, but Bhola does
not return. She turns on the radio.
RADIO’S VOICE
5 women and 10 men were kidnapped
by Maoist guerillas in the jungle,
20 kilometers far away from
Musikot, the headquarters of Rukum.
They had gone to the jungle for
firewood this morning. Also a dozen
children are missing. Their
whereabouts are still unknown.
Ramala is shocked after she hears the news. Bhola’s old
parents panic.
BHOLA’S MOTHER
What in the hell do my ears hear?
Is our Bhola one of them?
Ramala collapses into tears. Old parents blame her for her
husband’s misfortune.
3.
BHOLA’S MOTHER (CONT’D)
Don’t show your crocodile’s tears.
You sent my son to the jungle early
in the morning, didn’t you? Bring
my son here, or I will knock your
teeth out.
RAMALA
(Crying in pain, sobbing
her heart out )
For god’s sake, I am not to be
blamed. He is my husband and I love
him. I told him ‘to return home
soon.’ I’m shocked by the news. We
can do nothing except wait for him,
hopefully.
She goes to the bedroom, covers her mouth and cries in pain a
lot, but Bhola does not return home until midnight. During
nightime, the rattling sound of bullets is heard. The sound
of twin helicopters’ flight is apparent, mixed with the
sobbing and crying of Ramala and Bhola’s parents.
SCENE-III
EXT-BHOLA’S HOUSE-COURTYARD-MORNING
Bhola’s parents’ eyes are red and swollen,looking sad and
frail. A few army men pass by their house marching to the
jungle with rifles slung over their shoulders. They are
bewailing the loss of their son. Ramala is squatting next to
them with her unkempt hair, placing her forehead on her left
hand, almost bowing down her head, and silently sobbing.
BHOLA’S MOTHER
(to Ramala)
Did you hear what we are talking
about? You gotta bring my son.
RAMALA
(sobbing and pausing)
Why do you insult my injury? What
mistake did I make? Your son is my
husband. I love him as much as you
love him.
BHOLA’S MOTHER
(yelling)
Kiss my ass, you daughter of a
bitch. By hook or by crook, I need
my son soon.
4.
RAMALA
(being bold and
outrageous, and shouting)
Do you think I have hidden your
son? Tell me. What do you want?
Tell the one who kidnapped your
son.
(sobbing)
I lost my husband as soon as seven
days after I married. Have you ever
thought of the landslides in my
life? Who can I live with the rest
of my life?
(being determined)
If you help me, I am gonna fight to
find my husband, your son.
One by one villagers gather at Bhola’s house, and start
suspecting Bhola’s kidnapping.
ONE OF THE VILLAGERS
Maoist guerillas must have
kidnapped Bhola.
THE NEXT VILLAGER
Or they must be the army men
because they suspected Bhola as a
Maoist.
BHOLA’S PARENTS
(with tearful eyes)
But my son Bhola was not a Maoist
THE NEXT VILLAGER
Yes, we know. But, they might have
kidnapped Bhola just for
interrogation.
SOME VILLAGERS
Your son might have been kidnapped.
He will return home soon. Don’t cry
in panic. Wait for him, for God’s
sake.
A RADIO’S VOICE
As army men began their operation
through the jungle, they found the
corpses of two men in the jungle
upside down today in the morning.
One was found to be Ramhari Sharma
of Musikot, who got a bullet injury
into his heart; the other one had
got bullet through his head.
5.
(MORE)
His face could not be recognized.
Both of them are brought to Rolpa
Hospital for their postmortem.
SCENE-IV
EXT- A PUBLIC TAP IN THE VILLAGE- DAY
Ramala is at the public tap, filling her pitchers with water.
There are a few women, washing clothes and filling their jars
with water, who torture Ramala mentally, asking her many
questions about her husband.
ONE OF THE WOMEN
Hey, Ramala, how is your husband?
They giggle.
THE OTHER WOMAN
Did you find your husband?
Ramala does not speak a word to them. She fills her pitcher
and carries it at her waist.
THE NEXT WOMAN
Maoists must have killed your
husband. Now, you are not gonna get
him.
Shocked, she cannot hold the pitcher tightly and it drops,
breaking into many pieces. All of them laugh at her.
RAMALA
Stop giggling you stupid fool. Do
your business.
They stop giggling. Ramala goes home. On her way home, she
meets a boy, 17, with a slim body and a gun in his hand.
BOY
We are coming to your home tonight.
RAMALA
Who are you?
BOY
We are Maoist guerillas. Don’t tell
army men that we are gonna be at
your home tonight.
RAMALA
Why do you wanna come to my home?
6.
A RADIO’S VOICE (CONT’D)
BOY
We are wanderers. We cannot live
in the same place. We have to keep
on moving. We have a plan to go to
one place one day and another place
another day. Keep it secret about
us.
(brandishing gun in the
air)
If you let cops know about us, we
will shoot you. We are fighting for
the freedom of the nation.
RAMALA
(startled and stammered)
Yes, yes, I got it. I won’t tell
anybody.
They depart. Again she meets a few policemen with their
rifles slung across their shoulders on her way home.
A POLICEMAN
What’s your name?
RAMALA
Ramala
A POLICEMAN
Did you see any boy passing this
way?
RAMALA
(remembering what the boy
had told her, and almost
scared and stammered)
No, sir, no. I didn’t see anybody.
A POLICEMAN
If you suspect anyone as a Maiost,
let us know.
RAMALA
Yes, sir. I do. I also have a
question, sir.
A POLICEMAN
What’s that?
RAMALA
I lost my husband one week before.
I don’t know his whereabouts. Would
you give me a favor, sir, to find
my husband?
7.
A POLICEMAN
We don’t have enough time now. Come
to our headquarters tomorrow.
SCENE- V
INT- POLICE HEADQUARTERS- DAY
The camera focuses outside of the police headquarters and
slowly moves into it. One of the police officers is sitting
on a chair, smoking a cigarette, while the other two officers
next to him are laughing.
ONE POLICE OFFICER
(smoking)
I hate this fucking job.
THE OTHER POLICE OFFICER
Why in the hell are you talking
like this, man?
ONE POLICE OFFICER
We are not sure what time the
bullets blow our head off.
Tired and exhausted, Ramala enters. Police officers look at
each other and smile.
ONE POLICE OFFICER (CONT’D)
(blinking his eyes at the
other officers)
So beautiful, man.
(to Ramala)
Yes, madam, Can I help you?
RAMALA
(almost lachrymose in
voice)
My husband had gone to the jungle
to fetch firewood a week ago, but
he didn’t return. Would you please
help me find my husband?
ONE POLICE OFFICER
Madam, every day, a man or two like
your husband are kidnapped or
killed. How can we find your
husband while we ourselves are at
risk?
RAMALA
If you are a man for the nation’s
security, why can’t you?
8.
(MORE)
You cannot escape from your
responsibilty just saying something
like that, sir. I have lost my
sleep, appetite, and everything
since my husband lost. Why do you
turn your deaf ears to my sorrow?
ONE POLICE OFFICER
I understand your words, but we can
do nothing. We appreciate your
beauty and your beautiful voice.
(pausing for a while after
his last inhale from the
cigarette)
What happens if you lost your
husband, can’t you marry another
one?
RAMALA
(almost angry and
irritated)
Hold your tongue, sir. I am not
here to listen to your fucking
stupid freaks. I am here to get
your help to find my husband.
ONE POLICE OFFICER
Hey, lady, control your mouth.
(taking a gun out from a
stripe)
Do you know how this gun works?
RAMALA
I am not afraid of this gun, sir. I
am now turned into an iron. This
bullet and gun are gonna do nothing
to me.
(shouting at them)
You are a coward. Fucking coward.
You are the ass-hole of the nation.
Bullshit.
The police officer gets up from the chair on the spur of the
moment and tries to choke her, but she slaps him very quickly
and runs away. They chase her through the jungle. She pants,
and she hides in a bush. They cannot find her. One of them
says, “Hey, Maoists, Maoists.” They run away again back to
the headquarters.
SCENE-VI
9.
RAMALA (CONT’D)
EXT- BHOLA’S HOUSE- DAY
Helicopters are flying through the sky. Bhola’s parents are
sitting on the porch listening to a radio broadcasting news.
Ramala drops her doko filled with firewood, and wipes sweat
from her brow.
RADIO’S VOICE
3 women were kidnapped and one 12
year old child was killed as
policemen confronted Maoist in the
jungle today in the morning.
Tears fill Ramala’s eyes. Bhola’s father takes his Nepali cap
off his head.
BHOLA’S FATHER
This house is not like a house
since my son was lost.
BHOLA’S MOTHER
Hey god, why are we given such
torture for the sin we do not know
we committed?
RAMALA
(trying to pacify her)
Mom, don’t cry in panic. Things
once done can never be undone. For
God’s sake, we can wait because he
will come home one day.
BHOLA’S MOTHER
Stop preaching. I don’t like to
hear your voice. It is because of
you my son is lost. If my son did
not marry you, we would not lose
our son. You are an unlucky woman.
BHOLA’S FATHER
Leave it. Let bygones be bygones.
Don’t try to fuel the flame. She is
not to be blamed. Think about the
days ahead, hope for something
positive.
RAMALA
Mom?
BHOLA’S MOTHER
Don’t tell me mom.
10.
BHOLA’S FATHER
Don’t fool around. Stop, stop.
BHOLA’S MOTHER
Why should I stop? She is an asshole,
ass-hole.
RAMALA
Mom? Don’t kill me time and again.
You are my mom. You are my parents.
I have nowhere to go. The son who
is growing up in my womb is going
to be your other son.
BHOLA’S MOTHER
I don’t care. And I am not happy
with your stay at my home. Until
you leave in this house, we are not
gonna have good days.
RAMALA
Mom?
BHOLA’S MOTHER
No, mom. You get out of my house
right now. I don’t wanna see your
bastard face.
BHOLA’S FATHER
What the hell are you doing? She
won’t leave this house.
(to Ramala)
Ramala, you are not leaving this
house. I am sorry for what she
said. She said that because of the
pain that still she has in her
heart since she lost the son.
RAMALA
(with tears in her eyes)
It’s okay, dad. I am gonna leave
this house for the sake of mom’s
happiness and pleasure.
She goes inside the house, collects her cloths, slams the
door, and leaves home. Bhola’s father is calling, begging her
not to leave, but she does not give even a single look back
to the house.

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