Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Movie Review: Trishna

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I'm into foreign films, and Netflix has a lot of them. The last one I watched was Trishna. Now, I'm going to preface this post by saying that I am not from India, nor do I know much about the culture. So anything I say here is from a Western point of view; I am not trying to offend anyone: I'm just coming from an outsider's perspective. And there are spoilers!

At first, I was really enjoying the film. The title character was played by Freida Pinto, who is gorgeous; I could watch her all day. I was taken in by the loving family, the beautiful saris, the dedicated daughter who works hard to provide for her family. She even moves away from home to work at a hotel, and soon starts taking classes to learn more about the hospitality field. Up until this point, I'm enjoying myself and really like the protagonist. But then it all went downhill.

Of course there's a romance aspect to this movie, and that's fine. I expected it. But I didn't expect such a seemingly strong woman to turn into a stupid girl and that her man friend would turn out to be a complete asshole. He seduces her, and since she's a "good girl" she of course feels ashamed and dirty afterwards. A couple of days/weeks later, after she has left the hotel to get away from this man, you see her vomiting, and immediately I'm thinking, "She's knocked up." So she and her parents go to the doctor; I'm not sure whether that was to confirm that she's pregnant, or because they really don't know why she's vomiting and not menstruating (really?). Anyway, she has to get an abortion, and now has brought shame to her family (or at least her father can't look at her the same way).

Weeks/Months later, her lover shows up, asking her why she left and saying that he couldn't reach her by phone. HE KNEW WHERE SHE LIVED! If he really cared about her, he would have gone to her house, taken her back, and married her! And even though I can clearly see he's a jerk, she agrees to move to another city and live with him as a kept woman. So much for being a good girl...

Now she's no longer working, and it seems like the only things she does is go to dance classes and have sex with this man. One evening they're in bed, and he confesses to having slept with some of the girls they hang out with (duh). So she fesses up to the abortion (which, by the way, how come she isn't pregnant now that they're having sex all the time? He usually uses a condom but forgot that one time?). He gets very angry with her and leaves the apartment the next day, so she's all alone. Eventually she finds out that she has to leave because he stopped paying the rent (what did he think would happen to her?).

He does come back, acts all surprised about the apartment thing, and then asks her to move with him to work at another hotel. She agrees, and essentially becomes his sex slave. She serves coffee and food to hotel visitors, but every time she comes to bring him something (picture this: he's lounging around the hotel reading the kama sutra pretty much every day), he has to fuck her. And it gets more demeaning as time goes by: he makes her dance for him; he makes her strip for him in broad daylight; he makes her sleep with him when she says no.

Finally, she can't take it anymore. She goes to the hotel kitchen, gets a HUGE knife, and stabs him in the stomach over and over again. She then washes off the knife, tucks it in her bag, and goes back home. I'm thinking, "You were an idiot to be with that man in the first place, but at least you finally stuck up for yourself!" But soon after, she stabs herself with the same knife; whether this was because of the guilt she felt, or if she knew she'd get caught, or something else, I don't know.

So in conclusion: I can't stand movies that feature dumb female characters. You thought you could sleep with a man and not get pregnant? You thought a man who doesn't bother looking for you for some time after sleeping with you would actually be good to you? You thought leaving your family to live with some strange man and sleep with him all the time was a good decision? Really? Really? Stupid girl.

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