Yashna Paliya, Batch of 2017.
Rs. 22.75 crores on the first weekend, and that stellar monologue. Bravo, indeed.
Never has a movie hall made me feel so suffocated; and a script, so mortified. The incessant clapping and hooting and cheering for a ‘blockbuster’ that not only generalizes all women but also brings to fore misogyny and exaggerated stereotypes, made me wonder. It made me wonder what has become of the Indian cinema; and of us as people.
The plot is nothing but a string of dialogues that spell M-I-S-O-G-Y-N-Y (and perhaps overpriced popcorn.) The men, with their broken hearts or perhaps a general liking of crass cinema, nod enthusedly with every passing sexist dialogue. The women do it too. For some inexplicable, godforsaken reason, they do it too.
“Kya movie thi, yaar!”
Please, explain. Kya thi? Blatant hyperbole that screams gender stereotyping. The Indian soaps already have a sizeable amount of regressive portrayals of women and our culture, a PKP 2 wasn’t the best way forward. When you vehemently oppose women decked in make-up at breaking dawn, how can you be a corroborater of these ostentatiously high pitched females? And the fact that you club all females in the same set and impose overstated characteristics is extremely downgrading.
The woman sitting next to me found it funny when the male characters objectified the women. She found it funny when he said “Ladkiyon ki toh jaat hi kameeni hoti hai.” I was amused. It intrigues me why and how SHE found it funny. There were only two plausible reasons that struck me–she related to those women, or knew some who did. Maybe I’ve never had the good fortune.
Nobody is qualified to be judging people who watched this movie, and liked it. This is one of those movies which was released for the sake of keeping a franchise alive, and minting money. It was very well able to do so, and gets due credit for its success at the box office. It just saddens me that movies like these and those abominable one-worded Sallu Bhai flicks earn obscene amounts of money while un-glamourised cinema like Masaan gains nothing.
PS: The authoress feels awful for spending her money on the ticket. She was perhaps not in the best state of mind and should’ve bought Star Wars socks instead. Star Wars is nice.