This is a holiday MADE FOR ME. I am all about the positive thinking. To an almost unhealthy degree, I have no patience with myself when I am self-pitying. “Suck it up, Margaret!”, I think, “Find the bright side and stop whining!”, I order myself. But look! Now the International Day people (whoever they are) have given me a challenge, let’s see if I can rise to it, and find something that it would be almost impossible to be positive about and somehow manage it.
All right, my top 6 least favorite things about watching Indian movies! How can I turn this around and make them into something good?
Bad Subtitles on Indian Films
When you watch a film and have that sensation of “I don’t think the thing that is being written below is actually the thing they are saying”, whether that is because it is a misplaced desire to ‘translate’ the meaning (“Emraan Hashmi is the same as George Clooney, right?”) or because there is a ten second lag between the speech and writing, or because half the words dropped off the bottom of the screen or stopped playing entirely, that is a terrible thing.
But, be positive! Doesn’t it encourage you to learn a new language so you don’t need subtitles? Or even help you learn that language as you struggle to find meaning between two disconnected things? Or, at the very least, it helps you to focus on the performances and the visuals rather than the subtitles, better appreciating the over all beauty of the film.
(Same goes for unsubtitled songs. Don’t you wish you knew what they were saying? Isn’t it a wonderful gift to give you the encouragement to learn a new language?)
Indian Movies Impossible to Find on DVD or Streaming
When there is a film that you have heard about and desperately want to see but cannot find a copy of it anywhere. So frustrating!
But, on the other hand, think of the relationships you build! The chat rooms where illegal links are shared, the direct emails to DVD store owners, even branching out and finding Indian based websites (einthusan, hotstar, Tentkotta) just to satisfy your desires. All of these wonderful adventures and moments of breaking out of your comfort zone that you would have missed had you been able to just buy the film on Amazon.
(Someday I will find a copy of Tamanna. But in the meantime, there is something to be said for the joy of the chase. Life will be so empty once I find it)
Actors that Single-handedly Destroy a Film Through Bad Acting
When you watch Aishwarya in Fanney Khan. Or Salman in Race 3. Or Shraddha in Anything. And you realize that the entire movie is being dragged down by them, they are somehow poisoning everything.
But can there be light without darkness? Would we appreciate Bobby Deol or Rajkummar Rao or even Varun Dhawan as much if we did not have something else to compare them to? Yes, the movie as a whole is destroyed. But it has become a living struggling thing, like a dying bird that tries to fly with a broken wing, a strange sort of pained beauty to it. There are many good movies, how many movies are there that are almost good? A much more unique thing to experience. And finally, most of all, isn’t it nice to have something to complain about sometimes? Shouldn’t we be grateful for that opportunity?
(Think how much more you enjoy Madhuri by having Aish to compare her with!)
Films That Are Only Playing at Super Far Away Theaters
It takes forever to get there and get home again, you get no sleep because you get home so late, and sometimes you have to skip the film entirely because it is just not possible to make it in time.
But isn’t it nice to see a new part of the world? You never might have explored this exciting part of your city if not for being forced to go to this theater! Plus, public transit is always fun and gives you lots of time to read. Or, if you are driving, it gives you time to listen to the soundtrack of the movie you are watching before you get there. Plus, sometimes it is good to get very little sleep, makes you sleep better the next day. And if it just isn’t possible at all, then you don’t have to feel guilty for missing a movie, and instead can stay home and give yourself a different treat during the same time you had set aside for movie watching.
(Plus, the stars look so bright at 1am, and the roads are all empty, it’s nice driving back home super late)
Films That Have Ridiculously High Ticket Prices
With the growing ticket prices, sometimes movies are as expensive as concerts. And you can go to as few of them as concerts. And there is no money left over for popcorn or dinner before or anything else.
But then, we only value something depending on what it costs. A higher ticket makes going to the movies an event, keeps us appreciative and respectful of what we are seeing. And makes it more special because you can only go to a few, and all your money is spent on the ticket.
(And you can do elaborate dance numbers about the ticket!)
Films That You Struggle to See and Then You End Up Hating
You travel for an hour, or spend months tracking down a copy on DVD/streaming, put up with bad subtitles and bad acting, pay through the nose for the ticket, and then you just hate the movie after all of that. Not just one actor, but the whole thing. Is there anything worse?
But, if you hadn’t seen the movie, you would still have that bad experience to look forward to! Now it is behind you, done, and you never have to watch this movie again because you already know you don’t like it. Knowledge is a valuable thing.
(I never have to watch this movie again. Isn’t that WONDERFUL???)
I think I did pretty good! But I am sure there are other miseries I missed. Bring them up in the comments and I will find a positive spin on them.
Or tell me to go soak my head because there is no one more irritating than a determined Pollyanna-type.
(Pollyanna, one of my favorite books growing up. Did you know there was a sequel? And Pollyanna was caught in a complex heartbreaking love triangle?)