Trivikram and his heroines

11 02 2013

I’ve been planning to do this post ever since I watched Julayi. The movie was good. But it couldn’t make a powerful impression on me between the unbelievable and absurd stunts (even the cars perform some of them, besides the men) and the stick-thin, lackluster, and lifeless heroine. The intelligent, analytical, and logical approach of the hero has an exciting effect on the viewers, owing to the stark contrast to the usual portrayal of heroism, in traditional Telugu cinema, through supreme physical strength and aggressiveness. But the heroine stands at the other extreme. Conventionally beautiful but utterly stupid. Cute for sure with pouting lips, and rolling eyes but she seems to lack a personality. Besides mild frustration, Madhu (Julayi’s heroine) has triggered a series of thoughts in me, which made me recall Trivikram’s previous heroines. The brainless barbie doll depiction of the heroines is not a new thing in cinema. But the way it is celebrated and elevated in his scripts is something that made me wince many a time.

A storyteller of considerable stature, who shells out sensible story lines with strong and ingenious heroes, Trivikram disappoints with the way he portrays heroines. I’m disappointed that his lead-ladies pale in comparison. Bhagi in Jalsa is equally or possibly even more irritating than Madhu in Julayi. I almost puke in disgust whenever I happen to come across those scenes on Television. The stupidity and idiocy is one thing but the way it is  shown as cute and desirable is even more frustrating. Same is the case with Anjali in Nuvve Nuvve. Poori in Athadu is quite silly too. (But personally, I like the entertainment she provides in the movie though.) Consider Subbu in Khaleja. Gosh, I get irritated with each recall. From Anjali in Nuvve Nuvve to Madhu in Julayi, none of Trivikrams’ heroines are role models. Oh, wait a minute! Are heroines (especially of commercial cinema) ever supposed to be role models?  Do filmmakers ever realize how hard  young girls of today try to emulate them and be as silly ? 🙂 Just kidding! Or may be not! But who can deny their impact and the influence? Of course, there is an argument that it’s not the fault of the drink, but the people who choose to get drunk on it. I won’t get into it now.

It can be easily deduced, from popular belief and “evidence”,  that men get attracted towards cute, docile, dud-girls because they are easier to handle and help in boosting their own exaggerated self-images. But that can apply for average men. But heroes, who are supposed to be superior beings or at the least greater and mightier than an average man, with extreme intellectual and courage factors, falling for such dolls doesn’t make sense. They would surely be able to handle an intelligent, accomplished woman. Wouldn’t they?

Don’t intelligent and self-confident females make appealing heroines? If that’s the message Trivikram wants to give through his movies, there’s no hope for mankind (pun intended). 🙂 Is this highly dramatic? 😛 Ok, I’ll suppress the drama queen in me for a while . 🙂

There is usually unequivocal acceptance of stupidity in females. Actually it is celebrated. A friend  opined that girls, even when little, don’t listen to reason, and behave stupidly; that it’s in their nature. But I believe that it’s largely conditioning rather than biological or genetical. Any person responds to the cues and suggestions that come from the environment and it’s quite possible that the roots of the conditioning dates back to the early months of  a girl child.

I think when stupidity in girls is so celebrated, ignorant females believe that that’s how they should behave to get acceptance in the society; it becomes a natural attitude because that is when they get rewarded or acknowledged in the society. John Gray in his famous relationship book – Men are from Mars, and Women are from Venus – advises women to show perplexity and incomprehension at anything technical, which is more complex than a screwdriver. The man would jump at the opportunity to explain to her or, even better, do it for her. I believe this is a classic. I was, and still am, so amused by this piece of advice. Lol! I’m even more amused by the fact of how well that works. As a relationship guide, I say it’s a killer. 🙂 I sometimes feel that women in general, since ages, in an attempt to please and make men feel better of themselves by indulging them thus, somewhere down the line have really turned into the duds men wanted them to be. 🙂 Well, it’s just an idea that has occurred to me in one of “those” moments. 😛

Of course, lot of stereotypes exist that shape us and of course the future generations. And talking about them  is just one of those never ending sagas. 🙂 This reminds me of a conversation with my 6 year old son just the other day. It ran like this:

Me: I love you

Son: Girls shouldn’t say I love you. Only boys should say it.

Me: (Shocked and perplexed) Why do you say that?

Son: Am I not watching movies?

Me: &%*$^

That moment found me speechless for certain. I’m not sure about the open mouth though. 🙂 Needless to say, it triggered a train of thoughts in my mind. (Again…! It seems it’s not taking much for me these days to make me contemplative. Sigh! Good for the blog though! 😛 Don’t you agree? ) As I remembered Gautam Menon’s movies, I had something to say back to my son –  “girls say it too. You just haven’t seen the right movies yet.” 🙂

Reflecting on Gautam’s movies, I couldn’t help thinking about Trivikram again. What a contrast. Gautam’s heroines are all independent ladies with distinct personalities. They may have their own issues, but only just as any man would have with himself. I applaud him for showing women as the persons they are instead of… you know what. When I first watched his first movie Cheli, the one thing that impressed on my mind is the heroine (Disclaimer: I’m not a fan of Reema Sen 🙂 ). I found her amazing and so unlike her counterparts in other movies. Of course, there are a few other filmmakers who portray women well, but I believe they are always outnumbered by those who don’t.