Mar 8, 2009
'Straight' out of nowhere
I was one of the few invitees to the screening of 'Straight' yesterday at Fun Republic preview theatre (Parvati Balagopalan, Vinay Pathak, Anuj Chaudhary are just a few names from the attendees of the screening). I was skeptical because of a lot of reasons - a cynic by my side, a 'gay-friendly' movie from Bollywood on the screen and a theatre full of people whose natural instincts are to scream and holler on instinct at the slightest of jokes and faintest of hints of positive gay-vibe. The 'Dostana' nightmare still lingers on, you see. The first few minutes of the movie added to my wariness as some unexpected and cheap animation tricks to 'charter' down a family tree were unfurled on the screen.
Thankfully, that was just about it. The movie had me forget about all the things that could go wrong. It was fast paced, witty, clever and intelligent. The character development was just at the right pace leaving scope for the plot to become really interesting. It's funny how performances simply become good when you get rid of all the 'stars' and get some real actors into the mix. It is not at all surprising that I'm itching to add an 'unlike Dostana' tag to each and every sentence in this little post. But I'm not a movie-critic and I'm not writing because I needed to feel like one. Let's get to the point here.
This movie is so positive with regards to gays and their rights that it pales everything else that has come before it - 'Fashion', 'Dostana' you name it. There is NO gay stereo-typing. There are no banal jokes about homosexuals. Homophobia was dealt with classy treatment which would make even the homophobes enjoy the movie and possibly change their mindset. There are so many instances in the movie which stress about gays being regular people, about gays being not obsessed with sex and only sex, about arranged marriages destroying lives in the gay-context and finally about gay relationships being simply like any other relationship; with all it's virtues and fallacies.
We have campaigned for 'Milk' and we have cheered for 'Dostana'. I think 'Straight' is the movie that we should really promote as the judgment at the court is around the corner. I applaud the efforts of all the people who were part of the movie! Please go watch it!