17 Yrs Of Lakshya: Where Are The Films About ‘Clueless’ Women Who ‘Find’ Themselves?

Maybe a little representation on women who fuck around, women who make mistakes, are irresponsible, and unaware of their life goals would help us.

Maybe a little representation on women who fuck around, women who make mistakes, are irresponsible, and unaware of their life goals would help us.

Hrithik Roshan starrer Lakshya was a coming of age story with the backdrop of the 1999 Kargil War and was lauded for steering away from the steretypical films of that era.

Based on the transformation of an aimless man who is pushed towards finding a purpose in life, this movie now regarded as a cult film apparently inspired the young audiences to join the armed forces. The plot of the film is definitely inspiring to students who are perhaps still exploring the treads of life.

Films on ‘boys’ who grow up to be ‘men’

An aimless man sets out to figure out the purpose of his life and a film that traces his journey, sounds familiar? Let me list out the films – Lakshya, Wake up Sid, Rang De Basanti, Sultan, Soorma, Vicky from Manmarziyan, Mitron, Dil Chahta hai (maybe Aamir in it), Udaan (sort of), Swades, Rocket Singh etc.

The male protagonists of this movie have either ‘fucked around’ in life or are yet to know or fulfill their ‘ambition’ in life (which they complete in the course of the film) or are generally careless, ignorant and irresponsible. Of course in the course of the film they each find their goals and work towards it.

The women in these films are always shown to be ‘role models’

This character sketch is quite different from the sketch assigned to the woman, not just in these films but also most others.

Where most women aren’t given any professions as such, the ones that are assigned professions are the ones who are absolutely fantastic at their jobs! Who are completely kicking the asses of all their colleagues and bosses. Who are committed and good at their jobs, but their job outlines and their career paths are pre determined and constant.

Which is definitely great representation for the girls out there but is it really necessary for women to be excelling in something for it to be of any relevance?

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Is it because women can’t really afford to be irresponsible, careless and confused? Of course they can’t, because if they remain confused and spend their life figuring out what they want, then when will they get married?

Would a similar film about an ‘aimless’ girl then finding her goal, make the cut?

Imagine a plot about a girl who is aimless, doesn’t know what she wants to do with her life and is completely lost, do you think you could make a film on her? No you probably couldn’t cuz if she doesn’t have a career, then her purpose becomes marriage and children, assumed very organically.

Don’t you think there could be an ambitious woman who has no idea what she wants to do with her life?

When she wants to do something but is still trying to explore and see what she wants?

Does this mean that women aren’t confused or aren’t learning how to adult?

Where do young women finding their lives, look for their role models?

As a coming of age woman, I hate to admit it, but I have no idea what I want to do with my life, but who do I discuss this with? My parents who are trying their best to give me the best education? Of course people who read this will exclaim that ‘you are just wasting their money’, yes but not doing anything and exploring isn’t an option for an Indian girl because when will she complete her education and get a degree enough to fit in her wedding bio data!

It doesn’t help that we have no representation in pop culture where our generation fortunately or unfortunately does look for reference, for advice, and for examples, except one woman who went on her honeymoon, alone. Who do we talk to, because if we are confused then we are just privileged children wasting resources and opportunities – the bare minimum (the permission to study further).

Women need role models and mentors too – are filmmakers listening?

It is hard being a confused yet ambitious woman, because you have no idea what you want from life but you know what you don’t. While these men have this social capital and push from masculinity to find these goals, without mentors and clear conversations on career at home, women really do fall back. Not to mention the intense conditioning and lack of representation.

Women mentorship is very essential, especially for young adults, still entering into the phase of adulting. Just a guide, or someone to help you navigate through the social and home space always helps.

Maybe a little representation on women who fuck around, women who make mistakes, are irresponsible, and unaware of their life goals would help us, perhaps just offer us a ray of hope, taking a small step towards showing the realities of women being confused. A small step towards women not having to be right always!

Image source: a still from the film Lakshya

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aayushi gupta

I'm just really scared, I'll never become anything! Still exploring, trying to put forth ideas and opinions but also open to learning and perhaps changing them if something else made sense read more...

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