Bollywood Needs a Serious Makeover! – By Dr. Dhanpaul Narine

Bollywood Needs a Serious Makeover! – By Dr. Dhanpaul Narine

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has promised to clean up India. He will do well to start with Bollywood.

‘Jai Santoshi Ma’In recent times the Indian film industry has spread its influence to nearly every part of India, and even abroad, where its mindless and garish depictions have assaulted the intelligence in many living rooms. But this was not always the case.

One of the first superstars in the Indian cinema was Mahipal. He starred in over 100 movies and his last movie ‘Jai Santoshi Ma’ (1975) set records in the industry [read more].  In those days Bollywood idealized womanhood and the family and the epics left messages of the enduring values of love and devotion.

Bollywood today spends millions copying from Hollywood, converts the stories for the Indian audience and then remakes that after a few years. The copy and the remake of the copy, with eminently forgettable songs, weak story lines and sexual images have resulted in Bollywood sinking to a new low. 

The movie ‘Aitraaz’, a remake of the Hollywood’s ‘Objection’ was released in 2004. Sonia (Priyanka Chopra) and Raj (Akshay Kumar) were once lovers. But they broke up when Sonia wanted an abortion and Raj was opposed to it. Now they meet again and Sonia becomes the boss of Raj. She wants to rekindle the friendship but Raj is happily married.

Read more: Bollywood needs a serious makeover- By Dr. Dhanpaul Narine

Also read this article from the Guardian newspaper:

Does Bollywood normalise stalking?

A defence lawyer in Australia successfully claimed that his client’s aggressive pursuit of women was ‘quite normal behaviour’ for Bollywood fans. Sadly, it’s all too easy to concur.

In Australia, a 32-year-old Indian security guard has escaped a jail term after his attorney argued his harassment of women with unwanted texts, messages and personal advances was a by-product of his film fanaticism. What for some might be seen as stalking was, for Bollywood aficionados it was argued, “quite normal behaviour” as the movies encourage the idea that a woman will eventually fall in love with a man if he pursues her hard enough. [Read more]

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  • Clyde Duncan  On 03/03/2015 at 5:21 am

    Doc Narine: This essay brings to mind a Dear Abby letter, I believe it was a letter, from a teenaged woman about a date. She went out on a date with a young man, he was okay until the end of the date, when he grabbed her and proceeded to kiss her – she was so startled that she fought him off and ran inside the house in terror. Apparently, the parents investigated the incident and found that the daughter would have kissed him goodnight, but the apparent violent attack really made a mess of things.

    On the other side of the equation, the boy explained what he saw in a movie where the actor grabbed the date and ravishingly kissed the object of his affection and she fell in love and they lived happily ever after ….. Somebody should have explained to the young man that fantasy never happens in real life!!

    Doc, “…. a Serious Makeover!” covers it …!!

  • Thinker  On 03/03/2015 at 5:53 am

    When Dr. Narine says that most of the music is forgettable, I couldn’t help feeling that he should have mentioned some major exceptions: Devdas and Guru. The music of A.R. Rahman also deserves special mention.

  • Ron. Persaud  On 03/03/2015 at 7:55 pm

    Does anyone remember when Sparrow launched “Marajhin” upon an unsuspecting and “culture-conscious” East Indian (a diaspora?) in Guyana ?
    All hell broke loose.
    But in essence, the calypso is an art form. It is either “topical or philosophical”.
    I will defend it as an art form no matter how it offends my image of the “Maraj” and the feminine counterpart
    And do you remember ‘ap jaisa koi’ from the film Qurbani? How ‘helicopter mothers’ tried to keep their daughters from seeing the movie?
    An interesting sidebar to the latter. I had a VHS tape of the song & dance which I loaned to a white American woman. She played it at an “exercise class” in a fitness program. It was a hit!
    This was at the time when belly dancing was becoming a feature of fitness classes.
    “In those days Bollywood idealized womanhood”.
    Which days? 1975? If yes, my memory is much worse than I think it is.
    We evolve and so do our Art forms.
    I might not like the trend but ‘when the wind of change is blowing, build windmills; not walls’.

  • Clyde Duncan  On 03/03/2015 at 8:10 pm

    Ap Jaisa Koi:

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