Films shape our ideas of love
Whether we want to admit it or not, Bollywood and cinema, in general, is a huge influence on our lives. Whether the things being taught are appropriate or not is another question, but their role in our lives cannot be denied. When so many of our ideas on love are shaped based on movies, we must inspect what kind of love stories we are seeing on screen. Is it the usual boy meets girl story? Is it something that changes the idea of love for us? Are these love stories influenced by the social changes that occur in our lives? When we ask these questions, we might come across a few films that have shown love in a different light. Here are a few of them that you might have watched or will want to watch after reading this.
R. Balki a prolific ad-filmmaker, made a film about a younger woman falling in love with a much older man and made us look at love in a whole new way. Tabu plays Nina a 34-year-old techie who falls in love with a London based chef Buddhadev Gupta played by Amitabh Bachchan. The film follows their struggle to get Nina’s father (played by Paresh Rawal) on board with the idea of his daughter dating someone who’s six years older than him. Through the dark humour that ensues, we get to see an endearing love story between two people, irrespective of their age.
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Anurag Basu’s masterpiece is packed with stellar performances by Ranbir Kapoor and Priyanka Chopra and the film is much more than a love story. It’s got crime and mystery and it also presents itself as a slice-of-life narrative. At the heart of it though, you see the misadventures of an autistic girl and a speech and hearing impaired guy. The film shows all shades of love and makes for one funny watch.
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O Kadhal Kanmani
This Mani Ratnam film was remade (read, butchered) in Hindi as OK Jaanu. The original Tamil film became an instant classic by talking about contemporary love. Adhi and Taara start living- in after falling in love but don’t want to marry. Their landlord Ganapathy and his wife Bhavani are a married couple who can be only described as ‘cool’. Through the story, you see both these love stories represent different forms of love. Ganapathy is taking care of Bhavani who’s an Alzheimer’s patient. They act as inspirations for Aadhi and Taara who want to stay together but also don’t want their careers to suffer. How they navigate their future which is supposed to take them to two different places and still try to make sure their love survives is what the film is about. OK Kanmani was a reflection of the urban youth’s idea of love and the new problems that arise with the changing time.
This isn’t a love story between two people. Well, not the kind we’re used to anyway. Aligarh is not the first film to talk about LGBT love in India, it might, however, be the most celebrated one yet. Manoj Bajpai arguably giving his best performance till date and Rajkummar Rao in the supporting role makes this a great watch. When you take in the heart-breaking story of an unfinished life due to a society which has closed its eyes to love, it makes the film an even more meaningful watch. The film doesn’t show you a romantic relationship develop the way we usually see. It, however, talks about the very nature of love, and you come away from it feeling enriched and moved.
Where do I begin with Ijaazat? It wasn’t the first or the best film to talk about infidelity or past relationships. However, Ijaazat remains evergreen. The film follows the story of a couple who are separated and who accidentally meet in a railway station waiting room only to discover some truths about their lives without each other. You get to see everyone’s perspective. The film is comprehensive in its outlook, novel in its approach and storytelling and just makes you feel warm and fuzzy, in spite of it being essentially about a breakup.