I was going to write about Surakksha, the awesome debut of the awesome Gunmaster G9 played by the awesome Mithun Chakraborty.
But as I was about to start writing, I went online (as is my habit…I tend to spend waste some a lot of time before I get anything done) and checked my FB and Twitter feeds (while on that subject…follow me @zudeligumph yo!)…and, as usual, saw people doing what they do best online. Outrage.
What were they outraging about? Something about AAP? One of the many hashtags started by the Outrager-in-Chief Arnab and his minions at Times Now? Against one of the hashtags started by the Outrager-in-Chief Arnab and his minions at Times Now? The Beef Ban? Documentary Ban? Something else banned? Deepika Padukone’s boobs?
Nope, nope, nope and many more nopes. (Except the last one which might be a maybe.)
This time the ire and hyperbole was all around an innocuous sounding hashtag (#mychoice) and this video…
Now since this is a “trending topic” most of what can be said about this video has been said already. There are feminists calling out the video for being superficial and vacuous. Some have interpreted it as an elitist version of faux feminism removed from ground realities, reinforced by the choice of women featured in it. There have of course been those saying that Vogue should be the last people to talk about feminism in general and body image issues specifically. But of course the loudest opponents are the chauvinist men whose key takeaway from this video are the lines about premarital and extramarital sex…who have been saying stuff like “this is what is wrong with feminism” and “equality, not feminism” and “men also shouldn’t be judged for their choices”. [What they forget is that actual feminists are the first people to disagree with this video, feminism is actually about equality and that men have been doing whatever the fuck they want without any woman being able to pass judgment for centuries now.]
And of course there were a few people trying to meekly defend it…it could be a starting point for a conversation (which it certainly has become); any sort of expression against misogyny and sexism in India should be welcome; the only disagreeable “choice” mentioned in the video is “sex outside marriage”; ad hominem attacks on Deepika and Vogue do not disprove the points made in the video. [The fact that Vogue made it doesn’t render the video invalid, but it does make it questionable…it is kind of like a video promoting the idea of a Hindu Rashtra produced by the Owaisi brothers.]
I agree with a lot of the criticism…and the counterpoints. But I vehemently object to so many people saying all these things about this video. Because you talked about it so much that you made me watch this little piece of shit. And that is two and a half minutes of my life that I will never get back. [As I write this it has more than 3.5 million views, which is around 146,000 man hours person hours wasted on this tripe already.]
If I haven’t made it clear yet, I hate the video. But my hate has nothing to do with the ideas behind it or expressed in it. I hate it because it is a bad fucking video.
It is pretentious as fuck. There is not a strand of novelty in what has been said, how it has been said or the audio-visual treatment of it all. Deepika’s voice acting is horrible (it is monotonous, without any life or sense of purpose in it). It is pretentious as fuck.
And the writing…is just wow. Very early on, we are hit with this gem of a line “To use cotton and silk to trap my soul is to believe you can halt the expansion of the universe.”
But that is nothing compared to the ending…
I am the tree. Not the forest. I am not the snowflake. I am the snowfall. You are the snowflake. I am the universe. Infinite in every direction.
Now that is either something written by a Teenaged Angsty Emo Poet (sing it out like the TMNT theme song, you know you want to) or something Jaden Smith tweeted.
If this video does ‘empower’ anyone, they really needed that empowerment. For everyone else, chill out and move on. It is not worth the time and effort you’re putting into arguing about it.
And for all you smartasses beginning to point out that I have put in time and effort to argue about it right now…well that’s just #MyChoice.
P.S. The post on Surakksha will also get written. Once I’m done watching the sequel Wardat. Meanwhile, enjoy this gif from the film.