A characteristic Bollywood villain with cringe-worthy dialogues throughout, is eventually defeated by the angry, young Hero, out to seek revenge for *insert a typical back story*. Meanwhile the hero also saves the heroine’s ‘Honour’(!). The movie concludes with the couple coming together behind a rose.
Gone are the days when people found some manifestation of this same story worth a watch. With changing societies and mentalities, what people find entertaining has varied greatly. The Bollywood of 90s and the following decade was dominated by the romantic genre and rom-coms. However, the last few years have witnessed numerous new trends, some of which are enlisted here:
• Greater emphasis on Content and Story line: Present-day movies like the spine-chillers ‘Kahaani’ and ‘Badlapur’, the detailed mega movie ‘Baahubali’ or the courtroom drama ‘Jolly LLB’, and the subtle love story ‘The Lunchbox’, etc, all display the immense potential a grasping story line has in making a movie a success.
• A platform for raising Social Issues: Be it an ‘Aligarh’ addressing homosexuality, or a ‘3 Idiots’ about defying the stigmas and clichés in the Indian Education system, a ‘Hindi Medium’ reminding Indians of their linguistic roots, cautioning them against the fanaticism for English; or a ‘Lipstick Under My Burkha’ daring to speak out against marital rape and the crime of suppressing the desires of womanhood, Bollywood is waking up and this new upsurge will not let the country sleep in oblivion.
• From Heroes to actors: Greater opportunities for skilled actors are available, now more than ever! The story-oriented scripts demand actors who can live the roles, and that is why actors like Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Raj Kumar Rao and the like have been able to make it big in Bollywood.
This is not to suggest that big names are any lesser actors, but people who don’t fit in the frames of heroes we have been picturing in a certain way for long, are getting lead roles in Bollywood and this deserves an applaud.
• Women are not merely ‘Dainty Darlings’ anymore: Women are not just arm candies anymore! We are thankful Bollywood is realising. Movies like ‘Kahaani’, ‘English Vinglish’, ‘Dangal’, ‘Queen’ have depicted women power. In several other movies which aren’t specifically women-centric, women are shown as responsible citizens doing their bit on level grounds.
• The presentation of varied perspectives: Movies like ‘Madaari’ and ‘Highway’, among others, are instances when Bollywood has shown the Raavana perspective instead of the mainstream viewpoint.
These are a few progressive trends that can be noticed in the Bollywood movies off-late.
• The television industry has also tried to bring in newer concepts, but due to the regularity needed, most shows end up being similar.