There is no doubt that this is the era of women-oriented films. Bollywood is no more just a reflection of the male-dominated society or patriarchy, it has grown to be more wiser and bolder enough to give its audiences a peek into women's life, their struggles and how powerful they can be at times when compared to their male counterparts. And after watching Srijit Mukherjee's hard-hitting Begum Jaan trailer, we can only think of one word right now, that is, outstanding.
Vidya Balan as Begum Jaan
Vidya Balan, who has established herself as the shero of Bollywood, is back with yet another herculean role in Begum Jaan which will surely take her graph to another level altogether. She has totally nailed her bold and fierce avatar of a foul-mouthed and iron-fisted madam of a brothel Begum Jaan who gives zero fucks when it comes to her existence.
The trailer of Begum Jaan is a frame-to-frame mirrored version of its original Bengali film Rajkahini which starred Rituparna Sengupta in the lead. The movie is set in the backdrop of late Indian Independence period of 1947. It includes a ensemble cast of Naseeruddin Shah, Chunky Pandey, Gauhar Khan, Pallavi Sharda and Mishti.
While the trailer is filled with a lot of swearing and slang words, we are very much surprised to see and wonder how come the sanskari Censor Board, which boasts of preserving India's culture and traditions in the name of censorship, became so liberated to allow such a bold subject to be passed without any cuts and beeps and showcase to its audiences.
CBFC's brutal scissors strike Lipstick Under My Burkha and Anarkali Of Aarah
A few weeks ago, CBFC made headlines for denying certification to Lipstick Under My Burkha for being female-oriented and the use of abusive words in the movie. It has also demanded 13 cuts to the Swara Bhaskar's upcoming film Anarkali of Aarah feeling it might hurt religious sentiments. This decision drew a lot of flak from the people of various sections and questioned the decision making ability of the certification board.
CBFC's double standards?
Does its scissors target only a few sections of filmmakers? Why the Censor Board is so choosy when it comes to certifying films that talk about bold subjects that needs to be told? Why there is so discrimination? Why do they come with double standards? Does it nurtures favoritism? Or is it because it lacks the ability to differentiate between good or bad? Maybe or maybe not because the CBFC has never been clear about its decisions and the reasons that it states for clearing a particular film.
Will the Censor Board change its colors?
But, now, the question which arises is, if the Censor Board can let Begum Jaan walk through the censor gates, then why not films like Lipstick Under My Burkha and Anarkali of Aarah which are also women-centric that carry bold subjects with it? And as we have seen the board changing its colors like a chameleon in the past, so we might see Begum Jaan landing into trouble as well. While there is no movement for now, we will have to wait and watch to see how the board reacts in the days to come.