By Limra Jamal Siddiqui
The pictures in our heads are a subtle way we perceive things. The culture, the society, religion, gender, race, literary and socio economic conditions, all impact and shape our lives in a certain way. Another greater impact is made by the media we consume.
Thappad is the latest trend in Bollywood. Recently released, the film Thappad has a mixed viewership of audiences. If you see the reviews of this film you might see highly polarized reviews on IMDb. The film is about an Indian house wife who is publicly humiliated by getting slapped by her husband at a house party.
The story starts to unfold from here, when she realizes that her life revolves around this man. She starts questioning all small gestures and chores of the house she performs as her routine, ultimately questioning her existence and worth. Tapsee Pannu, the protagonist then files a case for domestic abuse.
The reviews on IMDb are majorly either a 5 stars; the upper limit or 1 star; the lower limit. On a close analysis of the demographic of these reviews, one can see that majority of the 5 star reviews are from female respondents and the lower ratings from male.
The problem with the portrayal of such acts in Bollywood films is how it influences the audience.
After Kabir Singh a large chunk of men believed that it was perfectly normal to be violent in relationships.
Read More: Anubhav Sinha’s ‘Thappad’ Trailer Is The Perfect ‘Slap’ Served To Kabir Singh Lovers And Its Director
On the other hand coming back to Thappad most reviews talk about the over exaggeration of this issue.
Some low rated reviews quoted:
“the film is stretched unnecessarily. Slapping is not that big deal. I have been slapped by various people during the course of my life. Doesn’t mean I’ll sue them for that. Don’t watch waste of money and time.”
“Tapsi’s brother’s fionce (Not wife / neither family yet) was intervening into there family matter and taking things aggressively to facilitate Tapasi for divorce. His brother objected and told her to be out of this matter. Which was normal as per our society. But in movie he was proven as villainous.
In other hand the female lawyer used his friend (hiding relationafter from her husband) for all the mental support, chat, fun etc….”
Most of the low ratings male respondents suggested that it might sound patriarchal but they sincerely believed that it wasn’t that big of an issue and family was much more important to be broken up by such incidents. Others said it was really depressing.
Whereas positive reviews talked about the film as an eye-opener. It made them critique the existence of such issues especially in Indian households.
After Kabir Singh and other films that have shown romanticization of violence, Thappad is a breath of fresh air. It talks about how violence is not normal let alone the romanticization of it.
In the end, we really need to think about how we process such movies and shows and also the people around it. Is there any change in our mindsets since independence?
Image Credits: Google Images