ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Bollywood, Within and Without

Reading Tanu Weds Manu Returns

With two endearing female protagonists who defy attributes of modern bourgeois femininity and at the same time do not fit in with notions of transformative womanhood, Tanu Weds Manu Returns is a refreshing social drama. It explores social confrontation but in its anxiety to stick to popular Bollywood formula, it loses a chance to become a cult movie.

Tanu Weds Manu Returns (TWMR), released in 2015, might go on to become one of the highest grossing films this year. Popular films like TWMR are an expression of sociocultural and political proclivity of the film-maker. The logic of investment shapes technological inputs; but the narrative strategy, cinematography and the conceptualisation of characters are, equally, a product of the cultural and political locus of film- makers. These non-economic aspects of film-making can be termed the ethico-political and craft logic. The tastes and preferences of the target audience do guide the sexual prejudices inherent in characters. However the sexist discourse that is, ethico–political logic, is also encouraged by film-makers. The movie of our discussion presents a convincing ethico-political logic; the craft logic and the economic logic accompany the former to make it commercially viable.

Defying Cultural Restraints

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