De De Pyaar De Trailer! I Am Cautiously Optimistic

I just put up a grumpy post about the trailer release, but that didn’t actually talk about the trailer itself. So now you get a short little post just about the trailer.

Ajay Devgan was announced as cast opposite Rakul Preet Singh, and immediately we all had “doom DOOM!” playing in our heads. Ajay has a habit of being cast opposite much much much much MUCH younger actresses and it being creepy and weird. And then Tabu was announced as also in the film, and we all had “But, she is so much better for him!” playing in our heads.

And now the trailer here, and it is acknowledging those reactions! Ajay plays his age, and Rakul plays even younger than her age, and right away we have society in the form of Ajay’s friend Javed Jaffrey saying “ew”. Not saying “good on you buddy, sex with a younger woman!” but instead saying “no, that is weird and yuchy and strange”.

And then Tabu shows up as his glamorous ex wife. And the film says “Shouldn’t he be with this woman, this beautiful age appropriate woman, instead of the other one?” His kids want it, his parents want it, even Rakul is threatened because he and Tabu obviously fit together.

Our fear was that the age gap wouldn’t even be acknowledged, yet another time that a much older man and a younger woman is normalized. Even worse would be if it was treated as a good thing, like obviously older men find younger women sexy and vice versa, playing in to male fantasy. But instead, the age gap is treated as the main problem with their romance! It is a bad thing, a thing everyone has problems with because it is obviously wrong. And Tabu is obviously right for Ajay and he should be with her.

Really, no matter how this love triangle resolves, the way the stage is set for the story means that everyone wins. Either Ajay and Rakul stay together and unlikely society breaking love, not to mention a happy divorce, is upheld. Or Ajay and Tabu get back together and the attractiveness of older women is upheld. So, I’m happy with this trailer. It probably won’t be my favorite film of the year, but it’s not offensive to me.

You are welcome to disagree of course, what’s your feeling?

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29 thoughts on “De De Pyaar De Trailer! I Am Cautiously Optimistic

  1. I was so relieved on seeing this trailer!! Finally, an actor playing his age and acknowledging that the age gap is gross. Even if Rakul and Ajay end up together (which they probs will), the movie will have worked through the issues rather than just present it as something perfectly acceptable.

    Also, this trailer only makes the Salman-Alia pairing even grosser…I really hope they acknowledge the 30 year age gap there…though I highly doubt it…

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    • Yes! And it was a consistent message, Ajay himself felt weird about it, his friend felt weird about it, even his kids and parents felt weird about it. Not one person saying “you go guy!”

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  2. I’m inclined to be optimistic as well, though I was still holding out for the possibility of an actual Ajay and Tabu romance. When will we actually get our true rom-com with older (plus 40 leads)? They will at least point out how icky the age difference is here. However, I’m not fully prepared to give the makers a pass if the end result is that he has a HEA with Rakul. It’s still a bit gross/regressive and you can’t expect much from a Luv Rangan movie anyway. Tabu will elevate the film with her presence and I actually think it does look kind of fun because it looks like lots of situational humor and it’s self-aware.

    Salman gets a big ol’ F for signing Inshallah.
    Ajay gets a D so far for aging gracefully in his his roles in regards to women.
    SRK gets a C+ (credit for Dear Zindagi and Chak De, but not full credit since she did have a crush on him by the end, and at least he’s working steadily with Anushka and Katrina who are at least in their 30s and are more mature and established in their own right…his next few film choices will tell us a lot)
    Akshay gets a B- (he’s heading in the right direction with Gold, but he still manages to have much younger female co-stars but because they’r generally not “just heroine” roles and tend to be meatier roles, he gets away with it)
    Saif gets a B+ (extra points for Baazaar, Kaalakaandi, and Sacred Games being age appropriate)
    Aamir gets a A- (he seems to have his head on straight about this in recent years and never has really gone too far and will choose to play fathers or asexual characters or non-romantic roles…and he gets a pass for TOH because they successfully got around the ickiness there).

    Hrithik’s the only one who still has a couple of years left of grace period for starring before he starts looking like a perv, too. Shahid is only two years away from 40 as well and his casting in Kabir Singh is already a little iffy.

    I think the industry is slowing becoming less tolerant of this stuff and the audience is more vocal about how gross it is. But there’s still a long way to go when Sara calling SRK “uncle” freaks people out!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I am slightly less eager for a Tabu-Ajay romance in this particular plot, just because it would mean that marriage is forever, and blah blah blah. If Tabu was his ex-girlfriend from high school who was now divorced herself, then I would DEFINITELY be for it, Anyway, super fun role for Tabu, I can see why she snapped it up. This kind of older funny femme fatale doesn’t come along often.

      I agree with your rankings, except I would switch Akshay and Shahrukh. Akshay co-starred with Sonam and Bhumi, that’s younger than Shahrukh has gone. Radhike too, she feels older, but actually she is younger than Sonam. Oh, and Pari most recently! But at least there is some acknowledgement of the age difference in the film, so I would put him as better than Ajay. But Shahrukh as slightly better than Akshay, just because he has costarred with slightly more mature actresses than Akshay in general. And I’d put Aamir more at a B than an B-, because he did co-star with Katrina in both Thugs and Dhoom 3. And Anushka in PK. Saif, I agree, he is really changing things. A few years back I would have said he was the worst, really reaching in Cocktail and Love Aaj Kal to still be seen as young. But now he has settled into his age and it is very attractive on him.

      I also think to some degree the industry is reflecting society. The idea of a 22 year old woman marrying a 35 year old man is still considered not just acceptable, but even admirable. She is young and untouched and healthy, he has a good job and a solid career, perfect match! And when you are casting those roles, you end up looking at 40 year old men and 25 year old women. 50 to 25, that’s still super yucky, but 40 to 25 playing 35 to 22, that might partly just be reality.

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      • I agree with this particular plot it might be regressive in a different way to have Ajay and Tabu get back together. But a second chance at love trope can also sometimes work well in the right context. I feel like there’s a recent Hollywood one with Meryl Streep or something that did this well?

        I’ll agree to your switch of Akshay and SRK. Akshay gets negative points for the Housefull stuff anyway…though sometimes he does seem to pick roles where his young heroines have something to do at least (especially true of Bhumi’s role in Toilet). Amir is always so non-sexual to me even in his romantic roles like Dhoom 3. And the romance in PK is very non-sexy.

        None of them are doing well in this, but Saif has definitely turned the corner and is taking the lead in reinventing himself in an age appropriate way (yet again, Saif is subtly better than the other three Khans and ahead of the curve on making varied film choices). That phase between Tashan and Happy Endings had some real doozies that were embarrassing but I feel like he’s come of it with lessons learned.

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        • Happy Endings! That was the other one I was trying to remember. But yes, he got through it and came out the other end years and years ahead of his cohorts. And it probably helps that his daughter was making moves towards a launch, he can’t really keep playing young when that means co-starring with his daughter’s friends. Maybe once Aamir and Akshay and all the others launch their kids, they will start playing older onscreen too.

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  3. It’s surprising Ajay is doing a movie like this when he paired up with an 18 year old girl just recently and even had make-out sessions in the movie with her. It would be very surprised if he actually ends up with Tabu. I have a strong feeling they will end up justifying the relationship with the younger girl instead.

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        • Oh, okay, that’s what I thought you meant. She was 29, not 18 (Born 1988). There must have been a typo in promotional materials or something. It’s still a 19 year age gap which is terrible, but not as bad as a 29 year age gap.

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          • Oh I did not know that! She was said to be 18 almost everywhere. Okay well then that’s okay. I’m not too bothered if the women are in their 20s except Alia because she looks like a teen.

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          • Do you know anything about her from Poland? I couldn’t tell from the information I found if she was like a big deal, or a total unknown, or just a regular working actress.

            On Tue, Apr 2, 2019 at 2:36 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • Total unknown. She was still studying in National Academy of Dramatic Art and had made only some short roles in tv shows. Shivaay was her first big role and movie. Ater that she only was in one polish movie, and two foreign series (American Gods and Whiskey Cavalier)

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          • Oh, Whiskey Cavalier has been getting decent reviews. Now i feel the need to check it out just to see Ericka.

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  4. Even if Alok Nath was roped in before the #MeToo allegations, seeing him just put me off the movie for a bit. IMO, putting someone in a trailer means you’re publicizing their presence in the movie and ultimately using them to sell the movie. Considering that Alok Nath’s lines did not really add anything to the trailer, could’ve been avoided.

    About the movie I have to admit – it’s better that what I thought it would be. And Rakul Preet is much better in this than she’s in Tamil/Telugu.

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s the one problem I still have with Alok in this film, just that instinctive gross feeling when I see him onscreen. If his role is similar to what it was in Sonu Ki Titu Ke Sweety, than they will use that grossness a bit. I definitely couldn’t handle seeing him playing the saintly patriarch again. But even playing a slightly sleazy older man might be too much for me and I won’t be able to get passed it.

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      • I don’t understand the “This is not the right place for this question” response that actors give out. Not like they’re exactly scheduling press conferences to answer such questions. Like I said earlier, Alok Nath just grosses me out now. Don’t think I’ll personally be able to watch this movie (especially when several people have come out saying Alok Nath is a very different person when under the influence) and he is being used as a face of the movie. They could’ve just avoided him in the trailer – wouldn’t have affected anything. But this just feels like Luv Ranjan trying to support Alok Nath.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. As everyone here knows I am very partisan, but it really seems to me that Akshay and Ajay get a pass for whatever they do. Akshay does all this patriotic (crap but thats just me) and he can do no wrong. Ajay might get bad reviews but he can romance who he likes. He’s married to Kajol after all. Even Salman has not been criticized widely for his bad movies, age of heroines etc. Amir gets a pass on everything. Thugs failed. Do they write EVERY time his name is mentioned, “after his failed movie Thugs,” Amir is going shopping. NO. Who is left? Who gets attacked for all of it. You know who is left…..

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    • Yep, you are totally right. And based on this trailer, it feels like Ajay himself is more aware of his position than the media/public is! He also made “Dil To Bachch Hai Ji” a few years back about an older man falling for a younger woman. The whole plot hinges on looking at Ajay, and looking at the younger woman, and noticing something is odd. How can filmmakers be telling these stories and yet the media doesn’t seem to be able to make the same connection???

      On Tue, Apr 2, 2019 at 6:14 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

      >

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  6. Dil To Bachcha Hai Ji! I’ve been trying to remember the name of that movie for the longest time. I really liked it when I saw it, and Ajay plays his age and it’s realistic about the romance. I don’t know how it stands up, but I liked the unusual plot.

    And Tabu was in the best age-gap movie: Cheeni Kum. The age gap is huge, but it doesn’t feel gross because she plays 35 in the movie and you sort of feel she knows what she’s doing. And the leads have great chemistry.

    Rakul seems to be being set up as a pretty unpleasant character, so I don’t know if they will end up together. At any rate, I will probably watch this one if available.

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    • I would be seflishly happy if they don’t end up together, because that means we will get more Tabu.

      If the movie really wants to go there, having Rakul end up with the son and Tabu and Ajay get back together would be incestious and gross, but also satisfying somehow.

      Also, I should review Cheeni Kum before this comes out, shouldn’t I?

      On Wed, Apr 3, 2019 at 1:16 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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