While the controversy over toxic masculinity shown in Kabir Singh refuses to die down, Netizens have now shared a disturbing clip from the movie 'Awara' (1951) starring Raj Kapoor and Nargis. The video shows Raj Kapoor slapping Nargis hard after she calls him Junglee. It doesn't end here, there are some other clips from different movies shared by users on social media.
With "Kabir Singh", a remake of the Telugu hit "Arjun Reddy", the spotlight is once again on Indian cinema's problematic portrayal of romance and its preoccupation with toxic male heroes. The film, which triggered a debate on the gender dynamic in Bollywood romances, has been panned by critics as misogynistic for its portrayal of the doctor who spirals into destructive rage when the object of his desire gets married to somebody else.
In the interview, Snadeep Reddy Vanga said, “I feel it’s pseudo because, when you are deeply in love, when you’re deeply connected with your woman and vice versa, there’s a lot of honesty in it and if you don’t have that physical demonstration. If you don’t have the liberty of slapping each other, then I don’t see anything there. I feel these women, whoever are criticising it, I feel they were never in love. They’ve probably never experienced it in the right way. I can clearly see they’ve never experienced it and it’s new to them.”
Going by the above statement, Netizens have now shared a couple of video clips that show that Kabir Singh wasn't the only film that showed violent behaviour. Take a look -
"Kabir Singh... sides with age-old patriarchy and puts a 21st century woman in a cage. It is regrettable that all this happens in the garb of a love story," film critic Ajay Brahmatmaj said.
None of this is new but has acquired darker, more ominous overtones.
"The man who loves the woman through completely owning is an old theme. It's part of the idea that he hits her because he loves her. At the present time, this form of masculinity has become even more appealing because of the relatively greater autonomy that women have...," sociologist Sanjay Srivastava said while analysing why films such as "Kabir Singh" continue to be a success.
The film has come for severe criticism from film critics for the way it celebrates an obnoxious hero, who calls the woman "meri bandi" the moment he lays his eyes on her and warns everyone in the college that she is off-limits for every other man.
Vani Tripathi Tikoo, a Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) member, also termed the film "terribly misogynistic" and blasted the makers for glorifying violence against women. "I find it baffling that "Big Stars" make these choices who actually lead by Example! As the Cinematic journey of the country has gone beyond its 'Traditional' Women as 'Eye Candy' routine. Can we remember how movie characters are idolised?" Vani said.
(Inputs from PTI)
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