Over the years we have learnt about the existence of heroes and villains in a strategic manner, allowing ourselves as an audience if at all we gave ourselves a chance to hear the other side of the story. How many times have we been told a film from the perspective of the one who is being shown in negative lights?
Barring a recent few changes which we have witnessed in the alternative paradigm of Indian cinema. Some of them are often victims of circumstances and thereby end up being entirely misunderstood by the audience. Here are 10 characters from Bollywood who were wrongly misrepresented on screen.
Dr JC Asthana- Munna Bhai MBBS
This is a film told mainly from the point of view of Munna Bhai and his peers, who were fraudsters, con-artists, scamsters who cheated his way to the top. It's no surprise that he would hate a disciplined man like Dr JC Asthana who had a more honest and practical approach towards career and life. It was seriously disappointing for Munna that Asthana exposed him in front of his parents for wishing to marry his daughter, who was a qualified, honest, doctor like her father.
Hence it was completely uncalled for that Asthana tried to rusticate him and allow meritorious students to prosper in their career, for the efforts they put in their work, instead of cheating their way to the top.
Anshuman - Jab We Met
Geet was a girl who only listened to her heart, even if her decisions were life-altering and personally affected another man's life. This was in an era when cell phones and mobile phones existed yet Geet chose to drive all the way to Manali to marry Anshuman. Although, she didn't bother to ask him, and consult with him, talk to his family, how does it matter?
Anshuman did not fit the romantic aspects of a typical Bollywood hero who would immediately embrace Geet in his arms and instead gave her a reality check that he too has a family to think of, and thereby cannot make life-altering decisions without consultation.
Jasmeet 'Jazz' Malhotra- Namastey London
Bollywood might as well hold the placard and scream out loud to the NRIs that no matter what always marry an Indian even if it is without your consent in a completely different location. The goras are always the villains, and when Indians mix with them, they end up as cruel as cold like all of them.
Similarly with Jazz, who wanted to marry a British man whom she had known for quite some time and shared a warm bond. She was aware of his divorced lifestyle and yet accepted him for who he was. But Arjun was the ideal guy because Bollywood says so. So since Arjun had already imagined his life with Jazz without a proper conversation, but a hell lot of eve-teasing, it was up to her to fulfil his dreams, even if she didn't want to. It doesn't matter that her father tricked her into marrying a complete stranger who has been brought up in a completely different land. It was a grave mistake of Jazz to escape from a marriage where she had no say in it.
Khurram Meer- Haider
Haider was an extremely controversial film of 2014 which was directed by Vishal Bhardwaj. The film was an adaptation of Shakespeare's play, Hamlet, but was set in the war-torn areas of Kashmir. Khurram Meer played by Kay Kay Menon was seen as the villain by Haider.
Haider had extreme radical notions about his state, then Jammu and Kashmir. It didn't matter that Khurram was actually on the side of law and order and making Kashmir a more normal, safer place to live in: for Haider, it was a grave crime since he was having an affair with his mother Ghazala.
Vijay Verma - Deewar
Vijay Verma, played by Amitabh Bachchan is one of the most significant characters in the realm Hindi cinema. For years he has been seen as the materialistic atheist, who cared more about cars, bungalow, bank account, than his mother, but in reality, he cared enough for her to wait for her mother outside the temple.
He was an atheist yet stepped inside the temple and begged for mercy for his mother. Without Vijay and his low life means, Ravi wouldn't have been the degree-holding, morally embraced white man which he was.
Hitesh - Honeymoon Travels Private Limited
Hitesh had an unpolished manner of talking to people. He did not possess the charms of Jignesh (Arjun Rampal) and thereby immediately became the bad guy in the eyes of Shilpa (Dia Mirza) and the other guests of the bus. Hitesh reacted out of humiliation and had apologised for his bad behaviour later when he came to his senses, however, none of it mattered, because he was a character who was unloved.
Aarti Menon - Aisha
In the world of Aisha, everyone who is her slave, and does not become a challenge to her existence, they get to be in the good pages of her diary. But not someone like Aarti Menon who returned from New York to be with her family, while continuing to be an accomplished woman in terms of her career.
Although Shefali did not have the same kinds of fashion and monetary standards as her, Aarti treated her with respect. Aisha, somehow couldn't stand her as she posed a huge challenge, unlike Shefali and Pinky whom she never considered her competition, since, beside them, Aisha definitely looked like the prettier, more perfect woman.
Natasha Arora - Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara
Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara may have been directed by a woman director, Zoya Akhtar but the entire film was told from the point of view of three men. Laila and Nuria were the perfect, lovely fantasy women, they met during their holiday in Spain and Natasha Arora was the reality check back home. Throughout the film, Kabir did not develop a special interest in Natasha although they got engaged. For several days, Kabir chose to remain the silent, coward, boyfriend who feared breaking up with Natasha, instead of being an honest friend. Naturally, when Natasha tried to find out whether or not Kabir was cheating in the relationship, she immediately became a 'chudail'. Had Laila known that her boyfriend, Arjun Saluja touched a woman's belly while dancing to the song 'Senorita' would she have reacted the same way Natasha did? Of course not, because Laila is the perfect fantasy, who will never have a problem with her boyfriend, even if she caught him in another woman's arms.
Narayan Shankar - Mohabbatein
Narayan Shankar made sure that sexually active teenage boys remained in control of their behaviour in Gurukul. In a boy's school, it is a basic rule that there won't be the regular entrance of women, hence not allowing women in the school was actually a basic concept one might find in any boy's boarding school.
Making sure that the boys of Gurukul became disciplined gentlemen, instead of juvenile delinquents was a moral crime on Shankar's part, hence he was punished with a music teacher, who made sure more trouble follows.
Mrs Suri - Hindi Medium
Meeta tried to make sure that Pia gets the best of education and an entrance in the elite club of South Delhi, that made her a concerned parent. However, Mrs Suri making sure that her son remained in the elite clubs of South Delhi immediately made her a villain.
As a mother, Mrs Suri made sure her son spoke fluent English since that would help him, groom, as a gentleman, however, the film director thought of that attitude to be wrong since she stopped her son, Ayan from speaking in Hindi with Pia. When a non-elite thinks of entering the elite club, that is immediately perceived as an achievement, however, when an existing member of the South Delhi's rich people club, manages to keep her status intact, that is immediately seen in a negative gesture.