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Archive for August, 2010

Imagine this……..

Posted by Sowmya on August 13, 2010

So I was watching this total masala movie ….you know the typical one wheren the hero beats up 25 people at a time and then sings awesome songs and finds time to do social work as also kill the villians to save the world / country / city as the case maybe and play pranks on his friends and eat gaajar ka halwa made by his mom.

Okay, I knew what I was getting into and did not expect a very cerebral 3 hour ride. I was bored out of my skull and just needed to pass time. But some things are so beyond imagination….I could not believe what I saw. I am fully aware that the run of the mill movies are regressive especially with regard to gender equality but this one just takes the cake……

Scene Hero (a police inspector) goes to arrest one of the villains for killing his own daughter.

Inspector – I am arresting you because you murdered you own daughter. I have an arrest warrant. yada yada…….

Villain –How dare you arrest me? Do you know who I am? What crime have i committed? ………..

Inspector –I am an inspector, an honest one at that. I will definitely arrest you…..

Villain gets ballistic! I think he is totally bugged with the hero and his idealism. So he vents his frustration on his TV. He picks it up and throws it to the floor, then he does the same to his table, chairs, etc. Then comes this gem of a line………

Villain -My TV, I broke it. My table, I broke it. My chair, I  broke it.  My daughter, I killed her.  Just as you cannot arrest me for breaking my own stuff you cannot arrest my for killing my own daughter. She is mine to do whatever I want.

Genius!!!!! I was shell shocked! I have seen many movies where the male characters have such profound logic with regard to their wives i.e. she is mine to whatever I want to. Though no one explained it so graphically as this movie. But when something like this was talked about with respect to the daughter, I was heart broken. Daughters are not always first class citizens throughout the country but somehow such a blatant show disgusted me.

After this, I waited for the  hero to launch a spleen on women being ‘devi’, goddess, etc and how she is to be revered and not insulted in this fashion. But I was in for a shock…….a shock of epic proportions.

On seeing the logic of the villain’s words, the inspector hero is miffed. He vents his anger on some chairs, the showcase and other consumer durables around. The villain is infuriated and immediately catches the inspector hero’s collar.

Villain -What the hell do you think you are doing? How dare you break my stuff? I am going to report you to the Commissioner of Police!

Inspector *smug smile* – Well well! You just said you could do anything with your stuff. But the minute I broke you stuff you got angry and wanted to report me. In the same way, I am arresting you because you murdered another man’s girlfriend, the love of his life.

I was disgusted, shocked, infuriated…you name it.  So the logic being that a woman can be murdered by her father / brother till the murder rights are transferred on her marriage to her husband.

I am fine when the society’s evil are reflected through the villain’s point of view and then rectified by the hero who promotes truth, love and justice. But if a hero is shown to have such a commoditized view of a woman who is to justify it? Are we so seeped into such regressiveness that these are not censored or objected to?  Are only sex and gore to be censored? Not this absolutely horrific and pathetic attempt of regressiveness? I agree that cinema is mostly for entertainment despite many movie makers’ claim of it being a mirror of society. We do live with innumerable leaps of logic and stretching of imaginations. But when such notions are so subtly promoted, there should be a protest, an opposition of some sort. I can only imagine the cat calls from the audience when the hero would have spoken of the murdered girl being someone’s love. People would clap and enjoy the movie and go home not realizing that the notion of gender inequality has taken a stronger hold on them albeit subconsciously! That a woman’s murder will be seen as either an incident or a crime depending on her relationship with the killer! Abhorring absolutely!

Are we simply not taking two steps backward for every step forward? When will we have a truly emancipated woman in reel and real?

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