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Enough about Chennai Express

July 24, 2013

A movie by Hindi Film Industry (Bollywood, as some call it, mostly those who’ve never been to Hollywood) depicting ‘South’ India is sure to make some mistakes. But now I’m tiring of people complaining about movie Faux pas as regards how it portrays the South. And it’s not even released yet.

Those who are upset by the trailers and promotion which are a mere tip of the iceberg, take note:

Firstly, it is not supposed to be realistic. You go see it to be entertained. Enter only if you understand it’s a work of fiction!

Secondly, people don’t go to see a Shahrukh Khan movie to learn about South Indian culture. They either know enough about it or they already have an ignorant, stereotypical idea of South, just like many Indians have about India they don’t know. (For example, enough people don’t seem to realise that MP is in central India, and Assam is not in China)

Thirdly, most people are aware that an actress is playing a character, and her accent is not to be taken as perfect even if she has tried to work on a faithful portrayal. Sticklers, please stop fretting about Dipika Padukone hailing from Karnataka and not TN, and her accent not being anywhere near Tamil – it’s ‘south Indian’ enough for the rest of the world. 

Fourthly, not one who is not bothered about other cultures need complain about caricaturisation of their cultures, it’s our way of assimilating. If we did not want to see a multiple extras Bollywood variant of any traditional dance, we will not show up for a Chennai Express or a Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam. Really. Like it or not, we are all one nation (Mumbai being bigger than that), and 25 variants of English won’t change anything. 

Lastly, know that A) people will be lazy. Some will not do enough research, some will not rehearse enough, or some will cast wrong stars in wrong roles. B) people will be greedy. Movies will be made by the stars, for the stars, and not for middle class sentiments about their crumbling cultures. and C) people are stupid: They will go and watch idiotic cinema, believe in stupidest of stereotypes and make money and contribute to continue the cycle forever.

So, like the rest of the country, see the movie as a rendering by Mumbai media (and a whole melting pot of India), and enjoy it if you can.



From → Systems, Trivia

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