Im scared I disagree with you more than I agree…
On the ‘agreeing’ side-
Yes, Bollywood shows Muslims as terrorists, women being suppressed and an on the whole sadder side of the Muslim life in India. And surely it doesn’t help in bridging gaps coz films are very important in an average Indian’s life.
Cricket and Bollywood are more than just entertainment, one is India’s heart, the other is her mind.
But, I’d like to say that you have only looked at one side of the coin.
Firstly, bollywood hasn’t always been showing Muslims as villains…. If you have seen the older movies, you’d know that villains were usually ‘Mogambo’ ‘Tiger’ or simply ‘Boss’…. It’s only very recently that Muslims are being shown as terrorists.. and im sure everyone knows why…..
I’d say… it’s only human nature to revel in the present!!!! And at present ‘terrorism’ is a FACT. And it’s also a fact that Muslims are the ones mostly found involved. I remind you.. a lot of crime is happening- mostly by non-muslims, but I doubt if these crimes are in the name of religion… ‘religion’ is being brought into the mess mostly by the ‘Muslim terrorists’. No wonder bollywood shows that….after all, films need to make money… !!!! if the producers continue to make films on the golden era of muslims and forget all that muslims are doin now, people wud stop watching films altogether.
Secondly, I think we need to look at bollywood in a better light
Though I believe that Muslims became terrorists only after being wronged, and im also against people who show one side of the Muslim picture….
I’m equally against showing one side of the ‘non-Muslim’ picture…..
Let’s take bollywood,
You have mentioned a few films, some of which I haven’t seen, I’d comment only on the ones I Have..
bolly shows :->an Indian Muslim boy becomes a terrorist. The same bolly shows in the same movie that his father (sanjay dutt),also a Muslim is a dedicated Police Officer married to a Hindu, the boy’s gal frnd, a journalist, is also a Muslim and NOT a terrorist. The film shows both kind of Muslims, the good Indian; the bad Indian. If a Muslim does not want to see the terrorist being a ‘Muslim’, then he shud go and stop terrorism in Kashmir…. It wud automatically get stopped being portrayed in films. If a film shows Muslims as villains, I wud feel bad… but, if a film shows Muslims as villains as well as Muslims as heroes- I see no reason to take offence.
again the boy is a terrorist, but Fiza, the boy’s sister is NEITHER a terrorist, NOR a suppressed al. she searches for her brother to reform him.. In a scene where someone says her something bout Pakistan supportism, she says that those who wanted to be Pakis left India in 1947, those who remained are all Indians…….i didn’t quite understand why you wrote fiza under the hindu-Muslim love story category.
Veer Zaara- its more of a Hind-Pak love story than Hindu-Muslim love story (coincidentaly India is majority Hindu and Pak is majority Muslim). I have heard many Pakis complain on T.V that India always shows the gal to be a Muslim Paki and never the other way round. It’s true coz marriages take place both ways.. but my question is why on earth wud India show gals leaving India for a grt Paki man????? That wud be the last thing I wud want to see in a film. For each country, their objective is right. What is independence for Pakistan, wud always and ALWAYS remain a Partition for India. Pakistan was created, born but India was broken into three pieces. And that is sumthing no Indian will evr forget, no Indian should ever forget.
Long bak one of my cousin sisters was married off to Karachi, twas an arrange marriage. The rest of the family was very upset with the gals parents…. A few years back, a cousin brother got married to a Paki, again an arrange marriage…. And now we r like, ‘Fine, it’s settled!’
And for any other film, me thinks there’s an equal number of films showing Hindu gals and Hindu boys… and even if the latter is more, I’m fine coz’ after all Hindus ARE a majority…. So y not let them have a slightly upper hand in some way and not make much fuss over it.
Zubeida- it’s based on a true story of a director’s mom,don remember the name. and well, zubeida isn’t shown all very happy even after being married to the hindu prince.
Besides I think you need to see a few more movies to learn that Indan cinema is not as biased as some Indian Muslims and almost all Pakis claim.
Anwar- shows a Muslim as a victim of terrorism
shows a Muslim as a ‘victim’ of terrorism
Iqbal- no terrorism at all…. A plain movie based on a muslim boy and cricket.
Dev- again Muslims as the ‘victims’
Firraq- a day into the life post Gujarat riots.
Fanaa- a Muslim terrorist and a GOOD Muslim gal.
based on terrorism… shows a common man fight against terrorism in his own way- the religion of the common man is never revealed- showing that a common man, belonging to no matter which religion, is AGAINST terrorism. There are 3 main active cops in the movie who r directly involved against terrorists and one is shown to be a Muslim.
Dil Se- based on Non-Muslim terrorism
Another fact bout Muslims being shown as suppressed and backward is that Muslims in India ARE backward wen compared to the other religions. Yes there are backward Hindus and films are made based on them too, so I think its ok to have films showing the backwardness of Muslims.
You as a Non-Indian Muslim wud watch these movies in a Muslim perspective alone and so you feel bad. But I am an Indian Muslim….. and I cant ignore either of my identities.
I feel bad wen I see a Muslim being shown as a terrorist in almost all the ‘terrorism’ based movies coz I know, “films re-enforce wrong stereotypes” but then I say, “hey, look the cop is Muslim too” and im like.. “Alrite…. Big deal!!”
And well…. Maybe bollywood is catering to a very large non-Indian audience…. That doesn’t change the fact that Bollywood IS Indian…….and SHOULD show the Indian outlook on society.
So… Hollywood portrays India with the Foreign/ International outlook (the recent slumdog millionaire craze!!!!) and Bollywood also starts portraying India with an International outlook……….. then where does the Indian outlook go??????? Dustbin????
Is bollywood showing Christians or Sikhs or Parsis or Jews or Buddhists or Jains or any of the other minorities in India as occuping the centre stage in films, the religion of lead characters??????????? No!
Bollywood is centred around Hindus with a dash of other religions……because .. that is PRECISELY the way 1 bilion and more Indians are!!!!!!!!
Bollywood shows the ‘culprit’ and ‘victim’ nature of Muslims equally and assuming the balance is heavier on the ‘culprit’ side….. I d still think it’s ok.:given that invaders from west Asia- Muslims- had plundered India. Given that one fine morning a man woke up to decide forming a new country that wud be named the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. Given that this new country formed never ceases to try expanding its border in the east. Given that separatists- Muslims- have made another partition almost inevitable…..
Given all these things, I wudn mind a tilt of the balance to the ‘culprit’ side, if at all such a tilt exists…
If we still haave bollywood Muslims showing good Muslims… I think it’s the highest example of tolerance that can be taught to the world..
So, if anyone dosnt understand “TOLERANCE”
Come visit “Incredible !ndia” :) :)
I started this as a comment to a sister’s post… but ended it so long that I tthink I mite just make it a post in Jalpari.
Newaz, didnt sleep ..:( gotto go for duty now :(
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