BY Vani IN Guest post

Why I loved Angry Indian Goddesses [DailyO]

After two years of painstaking work, I finally finished my second book.

“Yay! “cried my friend,” calls for a grand celebration!

“Next I knew, she packed a couple of us in her car and drove us to a mall nearby for a movie.

“Angry Indian Goddesses – it has excellent reviews, sweetheart!” she gushed. “You’ll thank me for this.”

Excited, we took our seats and within the first few minutes, we were introduced to a flurry of female characters; young, city-bred, daintily dressed. These girls were as bindaas as a bunch of Punjabi kudis high on Bacardi; they didn’t hide their emotions under a pallu and much preferred to wear them on their sleeves, just like us.

The movie seemed promising, and no wonder, we erupted into gales of laughter the moment we saw a young Bollywood aspirant, Joanna (Amrit Maghera), throw her boob and hip pads away at a director who suggested all she needed to do in Bollywood was shake her assets for the pleasure of the audience.

The screenplay was brilliant, however, much as I wished to enjoy it, the frequent pokes from my friends made it impossible. A sweat-ridden Pamela (Pavleen Gujral) had just been teased by two perverts while exercising on a treadmill in her gym when my friend was reminded of her yoga class and how a middle-aged married man made orgasmic sounds every time she bent in Marjariasana (The Cat Pose).

As the movie progressed and my friend oohed and aahed at the well-chiselled, bare-chested body of Anuj Choudhry, I didn’t have to guess hard where she learnt those sounds from!

I had just about changed my seat to enjoy Suranjana (Sandhya Mridul) bashing her male colleagues, when another friend of mine was reminded of her own office; the memories opening a litany of complaints against everybody from the top management to her boss to her colleagues, followed by a hammering of her choicest Punjabi cuss words. I wish Pahlaj Nihalani could bleep out those words, just like he’d done in the movie, because I could see some people were staring at us by now, an old woman even suggesting us to leave the hall and come back when we were more sober.

By the time, my friend calmed down, I realised all the female characters in the movie had congregated in Goa for Frieda’s (Sarah-Jane Dias) “unusual” wedding. That was enough to stir half of us into a gossip session, that included reminders of a long pending holiday, and now that we also knew the destination to be Goa. It was all about getting the necessary leaves from our offices (which I knew would never happen!). And while I thought this was like a typical Indian wedding movie, I couldn’t have been more wrong.

As the movie delved deeper into the lives of each of these characters- a single mother managing a demanding corporate career, a second one in an unhappy marriage, yet another one trying to stay afloat while waiting for her perfect opportunity in Bollywood, a fourth one agonising over a much awaited musical breakthrough, somewhere it struck a chord. The movie was packed with great twists and turns which were easy to relate to and for about an hour, no one in my group spoke a word.

If the makers of this movie were trying to evoke pathos, they had been successful; it was nearing its end when I heard my friend break into a sob. Alas, no matter how much we told her this was just a movie, she kept insisting such things happened in real life.

Later, as we sat in a café, we couldn’t help discussing the movie threadbare, peppering our talks with everything from gender inequality at workplace to single motherhood and gay marriages. In the end, I just wish to congratulate Pan Nalin for making such a thought provoking movie about women that wound me up even more than I had thought. An “unwinding party” with my girl pals is next on the cards.

To read this article on DailyO, click here.

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