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The problem with Khuch Khuch Hota Hai



Khuch Khuch Hota Hai has been one of those movies that I find really problematic. The first time I watched it, I was okay with it, but after that, whenever I watched this movie, I could only focus on how problematic it was. In my blog post, I am going to talk about a number of instances in the movie that were problematic for me.



Firstly, we see the issue of male gaze in the movie a lot, and how a woman should be a certain way to be liked and loved by a man. Anjali (Kajol) is a tomboy, has short hair, and wears full covered, men-type clothes. She is best friends with Rahul (SRK), but when Tina (Rani Mukerjee) comes into their lives, their friendship grows apart.



Rahul in the movie is quite problematic; he falls in love with Tina because she is feminine-looking, has makeup on, is all girly, wears skirts, and is showing skin. In the movie, we see that when Anjali wants Rahul to like her and see her the way he sees Tina, she dolls up, wears girly clothes, and puts on makeup, but rather than telling her she looks good, he laughs at her with Tina, which makes her cry. This scene is quite problematic because, firstly it shows that for women to be liked by men, they need to be all dolled up, have makeup on, and should be feminine. Showing the problematic side of the movie.



Not only this, but later in the movie we see that 8 years later Anjali has long hair, she wears traditional clothes, and she has makeup on. Instantly, when Rahul sees her after 8 long years he falls in love with her, because now according to him, she is “beautiful”. This movie focuses on all the wrong things, firstly, showing that a woman needs to be beautiful in order to be liked by men. If they are tomboys and have short hair, they will not be liked by men.

Further, in the movie, we see Rahul contradicting his own self, in the movie, multiple times. He says, “Hum ek baar jeetay hai, ek baar martay hai, shaadi bhi ek baar hoti hai, and pyaar bhi ek hi baar hota hai”, but we see that Rahul falls in love two times, first with Tina and then with Anjali, when she is all pretty, according to him. He also marries twice, so we see how problematic the character of SRK (Rahul) is. We also see that Anjali leaves Aman (Salman) at the end when Rahul wants to marry her, despite all she has been through with Rahul.


Personally, I am a big fan of SRK, but I never really liked this movie because of how it portrays female characters and shows that they need to be a certain way to be liked by men. Why do women have to change themselves and their appearances so men can fall in love with them. This is just very problematic, according to me.


What are your thoughts on my argument?


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6 Comments


Mariam
Mariam
Dec 01, 2023

Loved reading this! Although I'm not a huge fan of Bollywood films, I saw this one when I was really young. I couldn't help but notice how this film also reinforces the notion that love is conditional and fleeting, with Rahul's contradictory statements and two marriages undermining the very ideals he claims to uphold. Anjali's willingness to abandon Aman, who has always loved and supported her, for Rahul's fickle affections further perpetuates the narrative of female characters sacrificing their own happiness for the sake of male validation.

I do think that while the film offers moments of humor and nostalgia, these positive aspects cannot overshadow the underlying message that women's worth is tied to their physical appearance and their ability…

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Your blog post on "Kuch Kuch Hota Hai" and its problematic portrayal of gender roles is an eye-opener. It's intriguing to reflect on how popular media, especially films like this, embed certain ideals and expectations about gender into our psyche, often without us realizing it. Your analysis not only highlights the issues within the film but also invites a broader discussion on the responsibility of filmmakers and the media industry in shaping societal norms. Regarding the contradictory nature of audience reactions to such films, it's a fascinating paradox. On one hand, there's a growing awareness and critique of the problematic aspects of these movies. On the other, they remain 'guilty pleasures' for many. This duality perhaps reflects the complex relationship…

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Your exploration of the problematic aspects of the film adds depth to the conversation about how popular media perpetuates certain ideals and expectations. It also prompts us to question the responsibility of filmmakers in reinforcing or challenging societal norms through their work. It's essential for audiences to critically analyze such narratives, fostering discussions that contribute to a more nuanced understanding of the impact of cinema on societal perceptions.

However, something that I have observed is that while audiences critique movies like kuch kuch hota hai, this is also something that they love watching. Mostly, in interviews people talk about how this is their guilty pleasure. They also urge film makers to make more of such movies which is the exact…

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Yes, I definitely agree with you on this. People first criticize these Bollywood movies, and then they also watch these movies as their guilty pleasure because they just love watching these old Bollywood movies. For example, in the movie Darr starring SRK, he is a stalker and is obsessed with the female lead in the movie. Not only this, but the movie also glorifies and romanticizes stalking and obsessive love, and many people, though have critiqued it, still watch it as their guilty pleasure because its fun to watch such movies, so yes, I totally agree with you on this.

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Wow, this was a really interesting read. I watched the movie last year, but never thought about it this way. While your blog mentioned how Shahrukh Khan as Rahul in this film perpetuates sexism and misogyny (e.g. when he laughs at Anjali seeing her all dressed up for him and then his contradictory statement on falling in love), but I feel that apart from men, most of the times women are also equally seen as actively involved in the furthering of sexism and misogyny. For instance, in the movie, Anjali's mother is often seen scolding her daughter for not wearing such clothes that can make her look 'feminine' enough to attract boys. She is quoted as saying: "zara tou larkiyon…

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I totally agree with you. Yes, men such as Rahul in KKHH perpetuate sexism and misogyny, but women also do perpetuate sexism, such as the example you gave of Anjali’s mother. On certain occasions, not by men but by women, I have been told to look a certain way or have a certain appearance so men would want to marry me in the future. I would like to quote a woman who came up to me and said to me, "Beta thori larkiyoon jesi harketin karo tom boyish larkiyon koh koye pasand nahi kerta and phir agay ja ker tumhari shaadi bhi nahi hopaye gee." So yes, the thing you are saying about “keh aurat ki aurat ki dushman hot…

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