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PATIALA HOUSE, Patriarchy and Hindi Cinema

February 23, 2011 12:59:47 PM IST
Enkayaar, Glamsham Editorial
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While PATIALA HOUSE was touted as a film that would establish the credentials of Akshay Kumar, in an underdog role, it has also emerged as a film that has marked the arrival of Rishi Kapoor as the character actor, in the role of a father, with panache. It was a slot that earlier in the mainstream cinema was primarily marked for the Big B, but now Rishi Kapoor has emerged as a apt substitute to don the mantle of the character artist, more so an obstinate father who rules his planet with iron hand.

view PATIALA HOUSE stills

view PATIALA HOUSE stills

Indeed, portrayal of such kind of characters by Hindi cinema is in itself a regular reminder of the notion that the filmmakers have about the notion of patriarchy in their psyche as also in their growing ethos. Indeed, Hindi cinema's still is predominantly patriarchal, therefore the fathers decide the choice of careers for their children, and also launch them in their home production to give them a supposed perfect launch. Rishi Kapoor however is a different father who did not believe in this notion, when it came to launching his son.

Rishi Kapoor's portrayal of the strong willed father indeed has shades reminiscent of what was displayed by Big B in MOHABBATEIN. From the perspective of portrayal of character in PATIALA HOUSE, as given to Rishi Kapoor, it is a film that is tailor made for the audience of the Diaspora. The underlining message for the Diaspora's different generations is that the young generation be allowed to pursue their dreams and not encouraged to live under the ghetto atmosphere under the garb of being a close knit family, manifest from the quest of low profile and low social status jobs. It indeed is wonderment whether this kind of view, has been one of the factors whereby the current generation of migrants from the country, are not able to upscale the social ladder in the same manner, as it has been done by people room other countries.

Through PATIALA HOUSE in a much understated manner, Nikhil Advani has tried to give the message that as the world is gravitating to boundary less entity, the tag of nationality that one may try to wear on his sleeves in a migrant country, to protect identity, indeed has become a thing of the past. Times have changed, and therefore the world view about the migrant country also needs to change, and if that happens post PATIALA HOUSE, it indeed would have served its purpose.

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