Monday Morning Questions: What Do You Want to Ask Me the Week of Mother’s Day???

Happy Monday! I am up at our family house in Wisconsin, just me and Albie Dog. My apartment is infested with moving boxes and cockroaches, my parents’ apartment is infested with parents, Albie Dog and I just needed a break. So for Mother’s Day Week, I am avoiding my mother.

Here is where you get to ask me anything you want! From, “what movie should I watch for Mother’s Day?” to “what movie are you watching for Mother’s Day?” Just keep swinging back here all week as you think of new questions!

Now, question for you! Very important. Who is the worst mother in Indian film?

Ratna Pathak in Kapoor & Sons. No contest. Terrible woman.

Kapoor and Sons since 1921: Reviews and BO Thread - Page 58 | Bollywood  News, Bollywood Movies, Bollywood Chat

41 thoughts on “Monday Morning Questions: What Do You Want to Ask Me the Week of Mother’s Day???

    • It’s true, she’s terrible. Although Farah isn’t great in that movie either.

      On Mon, May 3, 2021 at 8:44 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  1. There are so many bad moms in Hindi movies. Since you already got Ratna Patak in K&S I’ll name a few others:
    1. Aruna Irani in Beta. Evil!
    2. Arjun’s mom from Half Girlfriend.
    3. Himani Shivpuri from Main Prem Ki Diwani Hoon. You force your daughter to fall in love with one guy and then tell her to get over it and marry someone else.

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    • YES Himani Shivpuri!!!!! Can’t make up her mind, sending her daughter hither and yon, just infuriating. Amrita Singh I can forgive a bit because she does the right thing in the end. Ratna PAthak is, of course, the worst mother in the history of the world.

      On Mon, May 3, 2021 at 8:48 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • I’m guessing you mean Aruna Irani not Amrita Singh, right? Or are you thinking of Amrita Singh from Two States? She was pretty bad in that one until the end.

        But yes, Ranta wins worst mother. I’ll add more as I think of them.

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        • Yes Amrita Singh! Still haven’t seen Beta because I am BAD. But by the end of 2 States, Amrita is all reconciled to Alia and at the wedding and stuff.

          On Mon, May 3, 2021 at 9:11 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  2. Seems to me most mothers in Indian films expect their daughters and daughters-in-law to ignore what their hearts and brains are teling them, and for the sake of custom, caste, religion, family honor, etc, push them to do things they believe are wrong. Yet these same domineering females bow and scrape to their husbands and sons. Ergo, they are bad mothers teaching bad examples of womanhood.

    My monday question: Ajeeb Daastaans: did you watch/review it? Anyone else? I was glued to the screen. Stories got better and better. I didn’t see the conclusion of #1 coming, figured out the killer in #2 but was still horrified, couldn’t take my eyes off Konkona Sen Sharma in #3 and was glad Aditi Rao Hidari got what she deserved, and in #4, the sign language was faked but I wept with Shefali Shah at the end. I usually pass on compilations preferring to let one story sink in over two plus hours. But I’m glad I watched four different film makers create four masterpieces.

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  3. How about the mother in Sairat?

    SPOILERS
    I have seen the movie years ago so I’m not 100% sure but if I’m not wrong. Few years after eloping the heroine misses her home and calls the mother to talk with her and tell her about her life. The mother later conveys everything to her husband and he sends people to kill the daughter and son-in-law.
    Ratna in Kapoor and sons is terrible but at least she didn’t kill her own kids. There is no justification for what Sairat mother did, especially because it it was years after the daughter eloped.

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  4. Dearest Margaret, can I ask a non Indian film question about American Film schools? A friend’s daughter is heading to college and is interested in film (which surprised me as I always saw her more as a writer). She has a big analytical brain, is painfully shy but will surprise you by getting jobs as a photographer’s assistant and at a grocery store despite her shyness, she was mostly homeschooled, but was in public high school for the past two years. Her current plan is to go to a city college in southern CA and then transfer to Southern Oregon University (where she has an aunt). It seems to me like a good plan for her creative, social mother, but I don’t like it for her. She is scared of debt (everyone in this town is terrified of debt, so scared that the kids NEVER LEAVE).

    It is actually illogical how much I hate her plan, for her. So I have to stew on why my feelings are so strong. I know I want her to be challenged intellectually and that plan won’t do it. I know I feel she should break more free of her loving but overbearing family. But I was wondering, what are good film schools? I can’t just say to her – your plan sucks. I have to come up with alternatives that don’t include Stanford (though seriously, she would be good at Stanford). Her step-dad told me to talk to her, even if I give different advice than her mother. He never went to college, and has no insecurities about it, but thinks she should get some other opinions.

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    • First, most importantly, please feel free to share my email with her if she is interested! How many homeschooled film scholars can there be in the world?

      Second, and I am guessing you are right there with me, always choose the school not the major!!!! If it is a great film school but you hate the dorms and everyone seems cooler than you and the city scares you, BAD! If it is an okay film school and you make friends on your tour and you love the campus and the dorms are pretty, GOOD!!!!

      Now for actual film school advice. There are two kinds of film schools and it’s important to figure out which one you want. There is the kind of film program like I did in undergrad and grad school, which is about watching and analyzing movies, not making them. And then there is the other kind of film program that is about holding a camera in your hand and bringing a story to life.

      Best schools for holding a camera in your hand, probably NYU, UCLA, USC, and Columbia college in Chicago. NYU and UCLA have the advantage of being really big diverse schools so she can study anything she wants if film turns out not to be her passion. Columbia is really focused, truly just an art school so you are committing to that, but it’s also tiny and very supportive of its students. But really, any accredited university that offers a film program is going to be as good as any other for the “holding a camera in your hand” part of it. If you are in a major city, you are more likely to make connections. But if you are in a smaller program, you can really shine and be supported. Once you graduate, it is all about the first project you work on and your degree doesn’t matter any more. And if she comes to Columbia (or DePaul or any other Chicago area school), I can take care of her!!! Make her milk and cookies and ask her about her day 🙂

      Best schools for writing about film is a much smaller list. Film Studies is a really new discipline. University of Iowa, strangely, is excellent. Emory University in Atlanta, also good. Again, any decent accredited university that has a legitimate film studies program (very short list) is going to be as good as any other. The secret thing about this field is that there is no money or jobs in it. Fun! If I were running the life of a young person, I would tell them 100% get an undergrad degree in film/media/pop culture studies. It will teach you analytical skills you can use for the rest of your life, how often are you going to be in a conversation about a popular movie versus about Shakespeare or whatever else you might get a degree in? But as with almost all undergrad degrees, it will not lead smoothly and easily into a profession. It just checks the box of “has a bachelors degree” when you are applying for jobs, and then you go from there.

      Any Big Ten state school should have a good film program, and possibly a good media studies program. And while the tuition is high, they are state schools so if you establish residency, it isn’t THAT high. I know this is my prejudice showing, but I just love the Big Ten schools! You get a world class education, in a nurturing environment, and an exciting interesting location, for not that much money. And you can change your mind halfway if you find something you like better.

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    • Oh, and the other thing that might be good to know if they are financially worried. Film programs have hidden fees. Well, not really “hidden”, it’s a logical additional cost. Part of being in a decent “teach you how to hold a camera” program is actually using a ton of insanely expensive equipment. So the film classes have a tuition bump to cover that usually (I always noticed that the film-film grad classes were about 20% more expensive than my watching-film grad classes), and you may also have to pay some sort of rental fee. It’s still a bargain, you come out of the program knowing all kinds of things about how to use high quality equipment you wouldn’t know otherwise, but it’s also good if it doesn’t surprise you when you look at tuition estimates. Figure on a film program being more like a lab sciences sort of program in terms of fees, not humanities.

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      • Thank you so much for this. I just spent two hours composing a letter to her with colorful markers on paper. Everything is less serious when it is in color. Your e-mail is prominent in the middle of the page, in bright green. I did realize I hated her plan because it seemed like a marriage of expectations and fear. I hope her mother will forgive me saying anything at all.

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        • Yaaaaay! I hope she emails me, I love making new email friends.

          On Tue, May 4, 2021 at 11:56 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  5. My votes for worst mom:
    – The mom from Humsafar…just awful!!
    – Jaya Bacchan from K3G…first she let her husband kick out the elder son…then she completely ignored the younger son…
    – Nirupa Roy in every movie…she could never take care of her kids…they were always getting lost, or getting mixed up in crime…and her only strategy was to cry cry cry…

    Also, just to balance it out I want to give a shoutout to an unfairly maligned mother – Seema Biswas from Vivaah – I know she is supposed to be the “villain” in the movie…but she is only the person who thinks practically…her husband is obsessed with his fair niece and ignores his own daughter..he is willing to spend everything and mortgage everything for the niece’s marriage without any thought for the other girl’s future….so yeah Seema was doing the right thing in speaking up for the younger girl…

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    • Yes! Second this vote that Jaya in K3G is worse than Ratna in Kapoor and Sons. Really, many maternal figures in Karan’s movies have issues, kinda surprising since he’s so close to his mom.

      And the Pakistani series moms tend to be deliciously evil. There are two terrible moms in Humsafar, plus my favorite Samiya Mumtaz from Sadqay Tumhare.

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      • But Jaya in K3G does eventually stand up for herself! It takes ten years, but she tells her husband to be quiet and that he was wrong. While Ratna at the end of Kapoor & Sons is all “falala, my sons love me, everything is fine!”

        On Mon, May 3, 2021 at 10:53 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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        • Jays knew from the beginning that everything about that situation was terrible, that Shah Rukh was deeply wounded, that Hrithik thought his brother abandoned him, and she just went about being quietly passive aggressive for TEN YEARS when all it took in the end was one firm talk with her husband to sort it all out. Ratna’s big sin was misjudging Sid and underestimating him, but her motivation was to help Fawad. And I think it’s believable, given Sid’s history that she didn’t understand how much it would hurt him. So Ratna I see as making an unknowing mistake, whereas Jaya knew and failed to act.

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          • Aha! But! When Shahrukh disappointed Jaya, her reaction wasn’t “you have ruined my life by not being perfect” but instead to give him love and acceptance, even though she had to say good-bye to him. Ratna’s response to Fawad was “booo, it’s all about ME!”

            On Tue, May 4, 2021 at 8:28 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  6. P.S. Meant to ask: has anyone read Djinn Patrol on the Purple Line by Deepa Anappara? Just won the Edgar for best novel, looks intriguing.

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    • It’s incredibly vivid; it’s depressing. It touches on a lot of issues you are likely familiar with: police corruption, Hindu-Muslim tensions, even more subtly, uncaring reporters who are more interested in documenting the scandal than helping. Nothing surprised me and yet, as expected, it is deeply unsettling and makes you angry at the system. To me, the mystery wasn’t the most intriguing part of the book. It was all the observations from the perspective of the children that were the most interesting to read. Fair warning, there is a fair amount of Hinglish, which I felt very authentic and also added levity without feeling stuck on, but it also made me wonder who the target audience of the novel was.

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      • You read such smart stuff! And here I am, taking a week and a half to finish The Marvelous Land of Oz.

        On Tue, May 4, 2021 at 9:31 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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        • HA! I alternate between reading depressing stuff and raunchy, funny romances! Oh and fantasy young-adult novels. Those are basically my three genres of reading besides work stuff!

          Unfortunately, I just can’t get into anything the Star Wars, Star Trek, and Oz related. I have tried because my husband loves it but I just can’t. Oh well.

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          • Oh, you still haven’t given your opinion on next week’s book! I looked it up, and the Evanovich I was thinking of is Rocky Road to Romance. So either that one, or the fantasy short story about a Warrior Prince falling for his Simple HearthWitch housekeeper.

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          • OOOH I am up for either. I have already read RRTR and love it. And Warrior Price Falling for a Hearth Witch Housekeepers sounds like it is right up my alley!

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          • Okay, I might do Warrior Prince just because RRTR is too similar to Getting Rid of Bradley in tone.

            On Tue, May 4, 2021 at 10:26 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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          • Oh, also, I looked up Dreams Made Flesh and I found it online for free. Not sure if the site it legitimate but it was easy to find.

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          • Not legitimate! Probably. But hey, if it’s free and easy to find, who are we to care?

            On Tue, May 4, 2021 at 10:37 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • Aw, bummer. Hinglish I don’t mind, but still don’t feel up to depressing, especially when it involves child disappearances.

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    • Yaaaaay, twitter already removed it!!!! So now I don’t ahve to read or thinka bout it and neither does anyone else.

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        • It’s our wish! Our 2021 wish! We are getting close to the dream of “Kangana in a humane peaceful kindly way, isolated on a desert island away from the rest of humanity”.

          On Tue, May 4, 2021 at 7:48 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  7. I recalled other very bad mothers in Indian movies:
    Sonakshi’s mother in Khandaani Shafakhana – not only she is dump but never supports her daughter who is the only intelligent and hard working person in the family.
    Sara’s mother in Love Aaj Kal 2 – 100% toxic

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    • OMG Sara’s mother!!!!! I forgot about about her! SO BAD

      On Wed, May 5, 2021 at 4:02 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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