If you watch the mainstream, blockbuster Bollywood movies, you would feel that Bollywood is in a different planet altogether compared to our humble Planet Earth.
This planet is located far, far away from the real world, the real Earth. It is a planet where the basic rules of physics don’t hold true. There certain people labelled as ‘heroes’ based on pure looks, can fly from roof to roof, jump from ten-floor buildings, yet land with intact bones. Then there’s another group of people labelled as ‘villains’ who are lifted several meters high in the air just by one single punch.
In this particular planet, life is very easy. Money grows on trees! Here we see people owning several private jets, helicopters, and staying in palatial mansions. There’s an extraordinary success but no effort shown to earn it. No going to offices, no running risky business. But the sad part is, the gullible Indians who have their eyes glued at that faraway flight of fancy learn a wrong lesson. They learn that life is easy. And with this rosy picture painted in their mind, they step out into the real world, ruthless and competitive, only to be utterly disappointed.
The Bollywood is a planet where the women allow themselves to be subjugated very willingly. It shows that after having a family of their own, the women have achieved the ultimate feat; their purpose of life is fulfilled. And this breeds prejudices in the society where women are meant only to slave in the house, and they have nothing more to live for. And prejudices like these get in the way of the women who can prove themselves equal to men, given the chance.
On this planet, the ‘heroes’ and ‘heroines’ always fall in love at first sight. Now, what is wrong with love at first sight? Well, it romanticises and oversimplifies relationships. Just like Bollywood, we also learn to judge each other by pure looks. We learn that a complex decision like marriage must be taken in an instant, under the impulse of some unknown emotion. As a result, back in our real planet, after taking hasty decisions, couples often discover that they are not compatible.
The Bollywood planet is the root of countless molestation which takes place in India. During the song and dance routines, the hero often chases the heroine. Heroine’s no is often not taken for an answer. And as always most people instead of recoiling with disgust, copy that. No wonder we have so many cases of eve-teasing and molestation here. After all, those rowdies are merely copying our beloved Bollywood heroes.
The residents of Bollywood planet teach Indians the wrong kind of patriotism. One’s devotions to the country can bring in many radical reforms, which may change the nation for good. But in Bollywood planet, the apparently patriotic people are typically staying in a different country, but fondly remembering India. In Bollywood planet, patriotism is not hard work, it’s not about helping your neighbours, keeping your country clean, improving education. It’s just about singing patriotic songs.
And these are just a few examples. If one was to write all the flaws of the Bollywood planet then the list would have been no less than a book. Now, the question is why in the first place are the Indians hypnotized by the Bollywood planet?
Well, life in a country like India is difficult, for almost everyone. There’s unemployment, corruption, violence, and the list can go on and on. But among all these vices of the country, the commoners of India have found an oasis of happiness, the Bollywood planet. Where everyone lived-happily-ever-after!
Like a bottle of alcohol, the Bollywood planet makes them forget the miseries of life. And that’s why the common people of India want to get far away from the cruel, brutal world, to the Utopian Bollywood planet and make the residents of the planet their role-models.
When the commoners are intoxicated by a false sense of satisfaction, the noose tightens a little more on their necks. They forget the miseries of life for a little while. Bollywood provides them with a distraction that leads to inaction. In a way, it’s like a drug which makes people forget their immediate pain, but only temporarily.
However, after reading this you may feel that Bollywood is the worst planet in the solar system. But there’s another neighbouring planet, not that far away, named Hollywood. That planet too propagates the same myths, only in a bit more efficient way!
But while we are mocking these planets, we must not forget that like everywhere else, there are some exceptions who prove the rule. Some residents of these planets have taught us valuable lessons of life. There are great films, from both Bollywood and Hollywood that everyone should see and learn from. But for that, we must not learn to be discerning, must stop hero-worshipping, and should stoprushing towards the blockbusters at the first opportunity.