We watched a Bollywood movie yesterday – Del Se… Supposedly, if you read the Wikipedia article on the movie, the seven stages of love are depicted. The “seven stages of love” are unlike anything I’ve ever seen in the west, so I’ll define my own version of what I saw in the film:
- Love at First Sight – aka “The Hots” – The main character spies a beautiful woman. Being male, he becomes obsessed with her right away.
- Hey Baby! – Being Indian, he is not really accustomed to love being a high context affair. He approaches her and is about as smooth as I was at the 8th grade Valentine’s Day dance.
- Hard to Get – She boards a train without even saying goodbye! Obviously, she is playing hard to get!
- Psycho Stalker – He finds her by chance in a remote village. She tells him to go away, not follow her, that she is married, etc. He follows her anyway. If she was a westerner, she’d have a restraining order out for him by this stage.
- She really is not interested! – She sends her “brothers” (fellows from her terrorist cell) to beat him up. This was the best scene in the movie! Too bad he did not get the hint!
- Date Rape – No really, he forces a kiss on her. At this point in the movie, I wanted to reach into the TV and punch the pervert!
- Consummate Love – The stupid chick falls for him in the end. At least she blows him up, but she did not need to kiss him before blowing him to pieces.
My biggest critism of this movie is this… the woman is not interested and the main character chases her anyway, the whole time maintaining this air of entitlement; he loves her, therefore she must love him in return. Eventually she falls for him in the end, which made me want to throw up. The moral of this story is that she really wanted him, but he just had to show his love for her enough first. Is this how Indians see romantic love happening in general, or is this just a single strange film that tells me nothing? If so, what about the poor girl who really, honestly simply does not like the boy? Does his sense of entitlement trump her right not to be stalked by a psycho? There is a certain irony that the hero of this film fits a common Hollywood villain trope; the guy that wants the girl who really loves the hero and pursues her even though she can’t stand him.
The second half of the movie has a Crying Game like twist and bizarrely turns into a thriller where she turns out to be a terrorist bent on blowing the prime minister up. This was actually pretty good.
The film has a famous dance scene (Bollywood films are all musicals it seems) quite early on; done on a moving train. Right after she boards the train without saying goodbye, he fantasises about her falling in love with him. It is pretty good.