Monday Morning Questions: What Do You Want to Ask Me on Pride Week?

Happy Monday! And Happy Pride Week! I got yelled at by someone at my church for calling it “Pride”, because there are other pride movements besides Queer rights. But at this point there are so many initials possible (LGBTQHIPPA), and they vary country to country, so I am giving up and just calling it Pride.

This is the place to ask me anything! If you read an interesting article and have a question about it, found a new actor you have a crush on and want to know which movies to watch, just saw a movie with a confusing plot and want help understanding the ending, anything at all (including what LGBTQHIPPA stands for), swing back here all week and ask me!

Now, question for you! I already set my Pride schedule for this year, but what movies do you think I should put on it for next year?

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31 thoughts on “Monday Morning Questions: What Do You Want to Ask Me on Pride Week?

  1. I saw people talking about how Aishwarya was the first choice for Veer-Zaara, and how different the movie would be, and maybe that Ash would be better and was like: Noooo. I realized I would never loved this film with Ash as Zaara, and how important Preity was in it. What do you think?

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    • I agree! What an interesting thought, it wasn’t until you suggested someone else that I realized how much I liked Preity in the role.

      Aish is so beautiful, but that also kind of changes how her characters are presented and what they mean. In both Veer-Zaara and Chalte Chalte, the script has the hero falling in love at first sight. With Preity and Rani instead of Aish, it feels like he is falling in love with who the person is, with the spirit he sees in her, because both of them are pretty but not shockingly unusually beautiful at first glance. If it was Aish, it would feel like “yeah, no duh, she’s beautiful everyone falls in love with her”.

      Preity also looks younger (mostly because of the dimples). If Aish were in that role, I would automatically think of her as someone who should be old enough to know better than to go on this quest, or someone who is refusing to act her age.

      And Preity just had the right spirit for it, confident and cheerful and youthful. No dignity, but the role shouldn’t have dignity.

      On Mon, Jun 24, 2019 at 8:01 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • Yes! I was thinking the same. With Ash it would be different, because everybody would fall for her face and not personality. I also don’t see Ash in the village scenes, when she bonds with Hema and Amitabh. Maybe the only thing I can think would be better is her relationship with Manoj. Preity is beautiful, but with Ash it would be even more easy to believe why he wanted to marry her so badly (besides the political reasons). With Preity I was always thinking: doesn’t this guy see she is not a good wife for him?

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        • Yes! That was my thought too, why the heck was Manoj so obsessed with marrying her? What made Preity special were the same things that he would have disliked, her firm sense of right and wrong, her independent thinking, and so on. That’s why Shahrukh loved her.

          Another thing that made the Preity casting better, the script was clear that Shahrukh fell in love with her over time as he got to know her. He liked her looks, but wasn’t stunned by them, it was her personality that won him over. With Aish, it would be hard to believe that her personality attracted him more than her face.

          On Mon, Jun 24, 2019 at 10:20 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  2. I have been toying with a question about your feminist readings of movies…your analysis is often very different from the majority opinion…where other critics/blog writers see misogyny, patriarchal stereotypes, you point out the strong female voices and agency…I get your point of view and also understand why other viewers (including me!) missed the feminist undertones…my question is – what do the audiences imbibe? Say a 20-something man in small-town India watches KKHH will he learn the message that “fall in love when the girl becomes pretty” or will he get the message “Rani/Kajol have voice and agency”? Similarly, if a middle-aged man watches De De Pyaar De, will he learn the message that “shiny new cars work better” or that “women can have desires too”?
    In other words – what stays with the audience – the surface level seemingly problematic trope or the deeper feminist message? If none of the other writers (except you) got the point, will the audience get it?

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    • This is a question I struggle with as well! Personally, I believe the deeper message is the stronger one. The surface message is easy to see, and thus easy to ignore. The deeper message is the one that stays with you.

      But that is just my belief, I would like to be able to cite empirical evidence to support it. So, I am going to go off to JSTOR and come back in a few hours and see what I can give you 🙂

      On Mon, Jun 24, 2019 at 10:44 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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    • It’s always possible. I don’t have to go to church this Sunday which opens up my weekend. But there are also two Malayalam movies I am interested in.

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      • I watched the movie over the weekend and really enjoyed it. Your analysis and review will definitely add value. If not in the theater (is the American word cinemas?), when it streams.

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        • Theater is more common in American English, although cinemas would be understood as well.

          I feel bad because it has been so long since I saw a Telugu film in theaters, I will try but I can’t make any promises.

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    • Sorry, forgot this question!

      They definitely aren’t “the” real musicians, because the song would have been recorded by session musicians months before they shot the sequence on film, I can’t imagine those musicians would be available and willing to do a bit in a film months later. But maybe they are real musicians? At least so the faking of the instrument playing would look more real?

      On Mon, Jun 24, 2019 at 5:23 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  3. Well I finally watched Bandini with my family and none of us were happy with the ending! When the movie ended, my dad said “I don’t know!” which is code for “I did not like this movie”, my mom straight up said something about it being “seeming like a low quality movie” (she is very blunt about her movie opinions) and I said “so Ashok Kumar dies at the end and Nutan goes back to Dharmendra right?”. In all seriousness I think that this movie is *technically* well made and Nutan was good (though I’m not sure this would be my favorite performance of hers) and all but the “main” love story just wasn’t fleshed out enough so the ending didn’t have much of an impact at all.

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    • Oh good, it’s not just me! I think the idea was supposed to be that Nutan is forever a prisoner to her love for Ashok, whether she is in jail or not. But I just didn’t buy it, Ashok isn’t all that and their chemistry didn’t sell me on the whole passionate love that will never die.

      On Mon, Jun 24, 2019 at 6:28 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • Huh I didn’t really think of the whole “prisoner to her love thing”. I did know that she would go back to him because he was sick and throughout the film they’ve been establishing her as a caretaker who nurses everyone. I was feeling very apathetic towards that relationship then when the murder part happened that made me even more unenthusiastic about it and just rubbed me the wrong way. It really seemed like she killed his wife out of jealousy and that really bothered me! Yeah the wife was a horrible person but she could have actually been mentally ill and she wasn’t actually endangering Nutan and it just seemed like she snapped because of the relationship! I really do not know how to feel about her being instantly forgiven and released. It all just made me feel uncomfortable. The beginning of the film with the prison sequences was really good though.

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        • Ashok being instantly forgiven for everything bothered me more. He marries this woman just for her money and abandons Nutan, but we forgive him because it was for the revolution. He is terrible to his wife, but we forgive him because she is terrible to him. and on and on. At least Nutan had that time in prison to deal with her guilt and stuff, Ashok just goes along without really facing up to anything.

          And then there’s Dharmendra, the one truly decent character, who gets nothing.

          On Mon, Jun 24, 2019 at 10:01 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • I guess you could technically make the case that Ashok is paying by his sickness but either way I ended up not really sympathizing with those characters (though I do sympathize with Nutan’s situation more thank Ashok’s of course because she was treated unfairly) and that relationship as much as the movie wanted me to. I had a similar experience with the 1953 version of Parineeta where I didn’t really understand why Lalita picked Shekhar (who I honestly feel like is an awful person in any adaptation and once again Ashok Kumar was miscast here despite being a great actor) when Girin was super sweet and just a wonderful person (not to mention appropriately cast)

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          • Yeah, at least the modern Parineeta feels like it acknowledges the hero’s horribleness a bit. She loves him because she loves him, not because he is a noble good soul.

            Have you seen Sujata? Good Nutan performance, and for once the hero is 100% worthy and wonderful. That is, if we assume the love interest is the hero, instead of the father.

            On Tue, Jun 25, 2019 at 12:41 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  4. I’m going to Poland the day after tomorrow, and I have a VERY IMPORTANT QUESTION. Which movie I should download for my flight? I was thinking about something with Arjun, because after Half Girlfriend I’m more in love than ever. But which movie? Ishaqzaade I think it’s tragic so not. In Tevar he looks super hot, but I didin’t like the bad guys in trailer. How it is? More action or romance? Gunday, looks like fun but I’m not sure. I need something interesting to keep my anxious brain busy.

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    • Tevar is fun, some decent action but it is all for the sake of the heroine, so also romance. Gunday is really silly and confused. Ishaqzaade is an actual good movie, classic youthful romance and tragedy. So, it will draw you in, but also be stressful. I would vote Tevar myself.

      On the other hand, Premam and Ohm Shanthi Oshaana and Bangalore Days just hit Prime (at least, in America). Oh, and Mumbai Police if you can find it, it’s got Prithviraj, that’s always fun.

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      • So from Arjun’s filmography Tevar (or Half girlfriend again). From others – Bangalore Days, because I was saving this film for when I will need something good and interesting and it’s now.

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        • Ooo, i think you might really like Bangalore days! And it is definitely interesting, will keep you watching. And far far happier than Koode, although it swaps in Nivin in glasses instead of Prthvi in sweaters.

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  5. I haven’t seen Sujata yet but it’s on my radar because I’m going through a bit of a Nutan phase at the moment. She doesn’t have the super sparkly, impossibly strong presence like a Madhubala but whenever I look at her during any time in a scene I’m never disappointed because her face is in constant motion and she’s always reacting to something which I feel like is mesmerizing in its own way.

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    • Sujata has Sunil Dutt! It’s the movie that made me go “oh, THAT’S why Nargis fell in love with him!” So handsome.

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        • Tall, open minded, sensitive, it’s all good. I’ve also seen him in Waqt and Amrapali and he did nothing for me, but in Sujata I was all about it.

          On Tue, Jun 25, 2019 at 8:47 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  6. Oh! I just thought of a question! But it’s not at all Pride-related.

    How is a movie done in dual language? (ex. Hey Ram was simultaneously made in Tamil and Hindi, Game Over was simultaneously made in Tamil and Telugu, etc) Not to be confused for when a film is dubbed into another language which is different I guess?

    Do the actors essentially film the movie twice, once in each language? Do they film it once in once language and then do voice recordings to dub it into the other language? Or are different actors used entirely?

    (Basically I found a version of of Hey Ram on YouTube but it’s in Tamil and I don’t want to watch it if it involves someone else trying to mimic Shah Rukh’s voice ❤ )

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    • For Hey Ram in particular, I remember (although I could be wrong) that Shahrukh’s dialogue is mostly in Hindi so no dubbing required.

      And what a great question! From my understanding, there are three ways this can be done:

      1. Two separate films made simultaneously with most or all of the same cast. For instance, Raavan and Ravanan, Aish was the heroine in both, Vikram was the hero in one and the villain in the other, Abhishek was only in the Hindi version. In this case, the idea is that it is mostly the same film but to truly “translate” it, you need to change the actors out a bit. In English/Vinglish, I think it was all the same cast in both versions, but they used Ajith for the Amitabh cameo instead. The Telugu and Tamil industries both have the same home city (Madras) and studios, so it is easy to swap casts around as needed. It’s kind of like making a remake, but doing it at the same time as you are doing the original.

      2. Post-dubbing. In southern films in particular, there is already A LOT of dubbing being done. Not just recording the sound after the filming (almost every film does that in every industry), but actual voice artists brought in. Most of the heroines don’t do their own dialogue, it’s already dubbed by one of the big name female dubbing artists. The languages are similar enough that the lips more or less match, so you just shoot it once and then bring in different dubbing artists and release it simultaneously. Maybe change a few seconds of film here and their and a few words in the script to make it work better for a different audience, but nothing big. This is extremely common between southern industries, the big name films are almost always released simultaneously and dubbed. Like, one every few weeks done like this.

      3. Post-post-dubbing. I don’t know how else to describe it, this would be when a film is made without being intended to be in multiple languages and then at the last minute they throw on a different language track. In the previous example, some of the actors would do their own dubbing for both versions because that was always the plan, and there would be slight changes to make the story “translate”. But in this version the film was made and final and done and then they brought in some random folks to do the dubbing last minute. And the script is a bit shakey in translation and some of the references still don’t make sense and stuff.

      On Thu, Jun 27, 2019 at 11:44 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • That is so helpful, thank you!

        So, particularly in the first example, I’m guessing it’s just a coin toss as to which one you see and hope that that’s the one that is “better”?

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