Naina (Gul Panag) just turned 30 a weekend ago. Her friends threw her this grand surprise party: new red dress, cake, champagne the works. Her ex boyfriend from college (Purab Kohli) dropped by too and you know, our Naina can’t really be blamed for going on the much hyped ‘rebound’. It’s called the break up therapy didn’t I hear: a romp in the bed with an ex flame and your break up reeling gets a punctuation. Chick flick yes, but nothing to write home about. The charm was conspicuous by its absence, the plot thinning out with every passing reel. I wonder then, what was it about this latest Prakash Jha flick that made a battlefield out of my anticipated lazy Sunday morning? Revising here the crux of the debate, I hope to get some insight:
SPOILER ALERT: (You may not want to read on if you haven’t seen the movie yet but then, didn’t we all know the plot already?)
# It ain’t just the straight ones who stray
Lesbians have their own issues and no, being socially unacceptable isn’t the only one of them. One of Naina’s friends has a cheating girlfriend and she is suitably upset. Frames showing the girl-girl couple getting cozy or fighting over third party suspicion were well intended I am sure but probably rubbed some the wrong way.
POV1*: Depicting lesbianism in every other film isn’t going to alter mindsets and such an attempt will only make more of a laughing stock out of the community.
POV2: While I agree that movies are today over exploiting the sexual orientation issue and turn out more sleaze than sense, but subtle cinema can still be the silver key to a more considerate mind.
# I had a messy break up, so what?
Naina has been into a relationship with Rishabh for three long years and was practically, as she declares, ‘married’ to him. Suddenly the guy announces he is getting hooked up to some uptown, business Dad bimbette. Her job scene is dwindling and slimy coworkers are stealing credit for her work. Ex flame walks into her life at her vulnerable worst and she gives in to the temptation of a one night stand. “…because I slept with you doesn’t mean I want to marry you” says Naina.
POV1: How can I sympathize with this chick who’s crying over her break up one night and doing everything in her power to reclaim her lost love and at the first brush of another man slips into bed with him?
POV2: The him was an ex flame, if that helps her case a little. Even though she gave into physical temptation, it doesn’t disprove the loyalty she invested into her three year old liaison. There’s no way of course a one night stand (turning into many more) can be justified but her other troubles are not her fault: a break up hurts. So does a severe job mess up.
# Hey, I am a writer too!
Naina turns author at the end; she has a whole chronicle of the lives and problems of turning 30 women to her credit. Ex beau wants her back…she wins her corporate malpractice case. Our Naina is a heroine.
POV1 & POV2: Yes we have a merger here. This was a disaster of an idea. The whole ‘I have had a messy life you care to read’ thing is as old as the oak tree in my 100 year old secondary school building.
# The one true love is all I need
College affair turned sour and Naina found love again in Rishabh. Though the two men later kept coming and going into her life akin to the hot water from my geyser at home, she settled down with whom she thought was truly her soul mate. (and yes, I don’t know if her decision poses some reflection on the pehla pyaar etc. theory)
POV1: I wonder if this is a game of sorts. Find love, lose it, find a new one and you can always take the back door back if you trip.
POV2: Not everyone is fortunate enough to find lasting true love the first time. If you have one failed relationship, are you doomed for life and have no right to open doors to happiness if love comes calling again?
I could go on. But I stopped before I could turn 30 arguing. Even if all I remember from the movie are Gul’s changing scarves, it did succeed in ruining quite a bit of peace. Oh but then, a random argument down the block is probably healthy. I am not complaining. 🙂
*POV: Point of View