Actress Bhumi Pednekar, star of upcoming movie Pati Patni Aur Who – the trailer of which released on Monday – says it’s ‘not a sexist film’ but Twitter isn’t buying it. Pati Patni Aur Who, an irreverent take on adultery, is a remake of the 1978 film of the same name (and theme) and moving the subject into 2019 meant making sure that the updated version didn’t turn into a ‘sexist comment,’ Bhumi says, reports news agency IANS. The Internet has, however, identified one particular dialogue from the trailer that directly challenges this self-confessed mission statement.
The line is spoken by Chintu Tyagi, the errant ‘pati’ of the title, played by actor Kartik Aaryan. He tells his friend, played by Aparshakti Khurana: “Biwi se sex maang lein, toh hum bhikaari. Biwi ko sex mana kar dein, toh hum atyachaari aur kisi tarah jugaad laga ke uss se sex haasil kar lein na toh balaatkaari bhi hum hain.“
One might or might not be offended by this bedroom humour – but in a post-#MeToo era, claiming wokeness on behalf of such a film seems pointless at best, disingenuous at worst. Many comments on Twitter have called the film out for joking about rape, marital rape in particular.
See some of the posts here:
Did the monologue in the trailer of #PatiPatniAurWoh seriously just defend marital rape????
— Antara Lahiri (@AntaraLahiri) November 4, 2019
…so the whole team of this movie think rape is a joke…”balatkaar” is not a joke and no wife would tag her husband as “balatkaari” just for fun…stop justifying stupidity just bcoz ur need a rhyming scheme in ur dialogues..!!!
— Apurva (@Apurva81287066) November 4, 2019
— Vinit Addepalli (@VinitVenkat) November 4, 2019
This misogyny needs to end! A woman’s power to consent is not something to joke about and what makes it worse is that 20-something year olds are being part of such projects. #PatiPatniAurWoh#Hindifilmindustry#MaritalRape
— Raahat Manrai (@RaahatManrai) November 4, 2019
Its 2019 and still people think it’s okay to joke about rape! Cringeworthy at all levels!
— Swetha Girirajan (@GirirajanSwetha) November 4, 2019
— Aaftab Alam (@SRKian_Aaftab) November 4, 2019
Do any of you understand the gravity of marital rape? And that people have been fighting to have it criminalised in India? And adding this sort of pathetic humour to our discourse is problematic? Has ONE PERSON thought this through?
— Ritika Grover (@groveritika) November 4, 2019
Someone please tell Juno Chopra that it’s 2019 and rape jokes are unacceptable.@TheAaryanKartik how did you agree to that dialogue? @Aparshakti@ananyapandayy@bhumipednekar@TSeries#PatiPatniAurWoh is same old Govinda crap being reheated and sold to us… shameful!!
— Rupali Pant | (@KrazyGal92) November 4, 2019
At 1.17, @TheAaryanKartik‘s character laments how “kisi tarah jugad laga sex hasil karne se” ‘poor’ men are labelled as rapists.
Reducing consent & #MeToo to a joke, this is film making?
— Shreya (@ShreyaTeresita) November 4, 2019
Bhumi Pednekar, who is cast as the put upon ‘patni’ with Ananya Panday playing the ‘woh,’ said this, as per IANS: “When I read the script, all the doubts that I had simply vanished. This is not frivolous… The story is very empowering to both genders. I think that the makers made sure that this does not turn into a sexist, baseless film. I do not think anyone who is part of this film, including us actors, belong to that school. We were extremely conscious of the fact that we do not end up making it into a sexist comment… This is a subject that could have gone wrong easily. But they (the makers) have been sensitive and careful. I have to say it is a big achievement.”
Twitter looked for vain in the trailer for this professed gender empowerment:
#PatiPatniAurWoh trailer is just so wrong.Ananya seems too young for the role.The jokes are crass & sexist.Women are being degraded as if it is perfectly normal.Nothing but stupid old Bollywood.They never learn.
— I am NOT a boy (@ishab26) November 4, 2019
This looks like group wale frustrated uncles ke bad whatsapp jokes ka “cinematic” version lol#PatiPatniAurWoh
— InnatelyIdiosyncratic (@Mayfly_dov) November 4, 2019
i don’t even want to watch this movie after seeing the number of sexist dialogues shown in the trailer #PatiPatniAurWoh
— Sonali (@prettyandsadtbh) November 4, 2019
— Suchin Mehrotra (@suchin545) November 4, 2019
Take a look at the Pati Patni Aur Woh trailer:
Pati Patni Aur Woh 2.0 tells the story of Abhinav Tyagi, better known as Chintu, who marries Vedika and lives happily ever after – but only until he meets Tapasya, a new colleague. He tells Tapasya that his wife is having an affair – that’s the 2019 spin the producers have given the remake; the original, which starred Sanjeev Kumar, Vidya Sinha and Ranjeeta Kaur, had the husband tell his secretary that his wife was terminally ill.
Pati Patni Aur Woh, directed by Mudassar Aziz and co-produced by T-Series and B R Studios (the original film was made by B R Chopra), is slated to open in theatres on December 6.
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