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Feminist Film Analysis

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Feminist Film Analysis

  1. 1. 1 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.” Explanation: 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.
  2. 2. 2 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 make coffee. 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
  3. 3. 3 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.

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