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Aditya Mittal & Chetna Sethia
Professor Name: Aasita Bali
Subject Name: Film Studies
CIA 3 Report
Q. As part of feminist film analysis, draw upon the formulations of gender in cinema laid out by
Laura Mulvey in her essay “Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema.”
In order to draw upon formulation of gender in cinema laid out by Laura Mulvey, we took a
2003 Kannada movie “Preethi Prema Pranaya” which went on to become a musical hit and also
grabbed the National Film Award for Best Feature film in Kannada. film written and directed by
Kavitha Lankesh. The film features an ensemble cast of Anant Nag, Bharathi
Vishnuvardhan, Sudharani, Prakash Raj, Bhavana, Anu Prabhakar and Sunil Raoh. It was
produced by "Indo - Hollywood" films, consisting of five producers, namely Mano Murthy, Ram
Prasad, Dr. Renuka and Somashekar. The music was composed by Mano Murthy.
The film revolves around three generations of two families having Ananth Nag and Bharathi
Vishnuvardhan as first generation.
Ananth Nag has played the role of a doctor who is a widower with a family of two sons and two
daughter-in-laws and a grandson. He is a very jolly, lively character. While, on the other hand,
Bharathi Vishnuvardhan has played the female lead role who is also a widow. The movie
revolves around both these characters- how they meet, bond and start depending upon each other.
The first sequence that we have considered in the movie is the scene where the female character
meets with an accident while the male lead character is out for exercising with his friends. Anant
Nag being a doctor in the movie, takes Bharathi Vishnuvardhan to hospital and gets her treated.
There is a certain kind of bonding which they develop right in the beginning itself. After few
days, Anant Nag visits Bharathi again to check if she is recovering fine only to find out there that
she has been staying alone. When Bharathi offers him to get him some coffee, he himself goes
into the kitchen and makes coffee for both of them. In this scene, they are shown to exchange
conversation where Bharathi jokes with him that how is that he being a doctor knows how to
This is where we observe Bharathi questioning, what we know here to be the dominant
ideology. It is a rare scenario in Indian context where a woman is shown resting, a man is shown
working in the kitchen and being instructed by a lady on how to go about. This particular scene
rejects the dominant ideology set by the society in general where a woman’s role is just to serve
the men, Secondly, Anant Nag, being a guest, goes in her kitchen makes coffee for both himself
and female lead.
The sequence is set indoors which looks like a real house and not a designed set.
The second sequence that we have considered is the scene that involves Dr. Chandrasekhar and
his friends watching a movie to satisfy their sexual desires. This happens when Dr.
Chandrasekhar’s friend has decided to move out of his house and shift to an old age home, due to
family issues. So one of the friends decide to host a farewell party for his dear friend. During the
party, they all watch porn. After they finish watching the movie the friend who had arranged this
movie is shown with his wife. The woman here is objectified and her short presence in the movie
is just to show her with her husband. The ideology that a woman’s existence is just to satisfy the
needs of his man can be related here. When we say that the woman was objectified, we don’t
mean to connect it with obscenity but we mean to draw attention to the importance of the role
given to her.
Also this particular scene doesn’t show the men actually seeing a blue film. They are just
shown to discuss this in the movie. It’s a subtle way to play with the minds of the audience
where they are tricked to understand things even when it is not shown directly in the movie. The
whole sequence indirectly shows the idea of Laura Mulvey’s “male gaze”, where the men (four
friends) end up gazing the body apparently being projected on the TV screen. A sense sexual
interest in or practice of spying on people engaged in sexual activity is shown in this particular
scene which satisfies Laura Mulvey’s claims regarding voyeurism and fetishism in her essay
“Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema”.
“Preethi Prema Pranay” is shown in a very realistic manner; sometimes supporting the
norms and sometimes going against them.