By Rhea Sabherwal
1. The quest for the PERFECT love story.
Who remembers Kajol, in ‘DDLJ’, running towards the train and Shah Rukh holding on to her hand at just the right time? What about Imran Khan, in ‘Jaane Tu Ya Jaane Na’, riding a horse to make it to the airport so he could stop the ‘love of his life’ in time? There are a hundred more such generic examples from Bollywood movies where the guy attempts to proclaim his undying love for the girl and manages to do so just in the nick of the time in the grandest of ways.
I don’t know about you guys but I remember all of these so well that they’re etched into my brain (for eternity?)
This made me realize that being a Bollywood addict comes with its own downsides. For me, the most prominent one is the growing reckoning for an unrealistic romance and it’s climax, as depicted in the movies. According to me, a relationship hasn’t completed it’s full course until the two people involved go through a brief period of separation and then person A has some sort of an epiphany about how person B is the great love of their life and losing them would shatter them which then leads to a very romantic, over the top (read unrealistic) and tear-jerking coming together of the “meant-to-be” couple.
Don’t think I say any of this just to fill up the pages, I mean it to the extent where if I were to be in a happy relationship I would deliberately sabotage it for it to fall apart just so that the guy can come chasing me down at the airport just before my flight boards (because I would obviously be uncontactable once I leave the country, duh).
If we dig a bit deeper I think there’s a perfectly sensible explanation as why the Hindi movie industry, i.e. Bollywood, is obsessed with creating these fictional ‘perfect’ romances. And the reason is because they ALWAYS work. And why they work is because in a country like India, where most people are still not allowed to marry a person of their choice, these movies give them an escape into a world where love always wins, unlike the unfortunate reality. It is escapism at its peak. And it is interesting to see how these movies make some people feel as though they have something missing in their lives but to another person they give this (probably delusory) hope of them experiencing all those things someday.
And on a more personal note: Do I think that all these Bollywood moments will actually happen to me? No. Will I still be disappointed if they don’t? Hell yes.
2. Losing a few of your grey cells
Hey, don’t get me wrong, I love Bollywood, but the world in itself isn’t exactly known for being driven by its academic strength. I think Bollywood is the only film industry which has more reviews from stand-up comedians than it does from actual critics (yes pretentious movie reviews, I’m looking at you). Whether it is the CGI talking parrot in ‘Main Prem Ki Deewani Hoon’ Or Salman Khan aptly throwing away the guitar while it still continues to play or be it Varun Dhawan in ‘Judwaa 2’ who kicks a football and it goes flying around the whole of England-Bollywood has made sure that ‘common logic’ is something they normally don’t incorporate into a movie.
Many directors themselves say that one should “leave their brain at home” while going for their movie. Keeping aside the biological complexity that seems to be present to me, I would just like to ask these directors “Do you say so because you left yours while making these movies? ”
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