Bride and Prejudice, 2004

Directed by: Gurinder Chadha

It was my 6th Bollywood Anniversary on the 11th of February, but I was doing important things like driving 11 hours to Las Vegas in the quest to see My Name is Khan so, yes, I totally forgot it.  However it all came back to me like a Celine Dion song when at work the other night I saw a copy of Bride and Prejudice on sale for 5$.
Of course I picked it up! I was feeling nostalgic, hopefull it wasn’t as terrible as I remembered it to be, and giddy with happiness that something remotely close to Bollywollys were being sold in the great state of Idaho. Oh, and B&P was totally my first exposure to the great filmi world.
I’ve spent six years rolling my eyes at people when they ask me “Ohhh! You like Bollywood? Have you seen Bride and Prejudice!? Isn’t it like the best movie…ever?!”
Yes, I love the Bollywobbles. Yes, *large sigh*, I’ve seen it. No, it’s definitely not the best movie in the world. Fashion is, everyone knows that. Silly!
To be honest, when my family and I were stranded in a hotel room after a delayed flight and we were looking for something to watch on the Pay-Per-View I had no idea what Bollywood was, so my innocent suggestion to watch B&P was just that: innocent.
I think to this day they still think I had the whole thing planned out and made them suffer through it because I like to laugh at their pain*. I will say, however, that hearing and seeing my mother breaking into sudden outbursts of “No Life Without Wife” for months afterwards might have been totally worth it.

Oh, and of course my slow introduction to the BWoods after this experience made it REALLY worth it.
There was a three year gap between this movie and Salaam-e-Ishq (when I took the plunge and got all addicted) and the soundtrack, as terrible as it is (the singing is atrocious and the songs dull as powder), got me through those bleak, empty years and woke me up via my clock radio everyday during High School.
Everything, and I mean everything that my family and I scoffed at during this film are now the things I love: running through fountains, unplausible trips via helicopter from LA to the Grand Canyon for a simple date, scheming Maas, epic Punjabi Bhangra fests (a soft spot of mine, actually. Now I know where it comes from!), random celebrity musical numbers, choirs on risers that appear magically on beaches, Helen!, Aishwarya’s face, coming painfully close to kissing…and then not, wind machines, amazingly terrible dialogue… the list goes on, and we laughed joyfully at it all.
Oh, I am so much wiser now!
As I was watching this yesterday I kept thinking to myself, “Jane Austen was just made for Bollywood”. It just fits, and, as a person who sports a very Austen surname, I glee over hearing it pronounced over and over again. (I like hearing my name said, is all. I like to hear how everyone says it. I know, it’s weird).  And I was also glad I had re-watched it, there are hidden posters of Shah Rukh and Kajol and Rani all over the place! It’s like an Easter Egg Hunt!
I think this might be the worst performance of Aishwarya I’ve ever seen. Eh, we all have bad days, I guess. Plus it was terribly painful to watch her on screen with her abusive husband from Provoked.
Ow ow ow.
Ah, I’m just glad I didn’t spend more than the five bucks on it… oh, and Happy Anniversary to Me!*To be fair they might be right about me subjecting them to terrible movies, the only other films my dad has seen are Saawariya and Kaminey (which I kind of liked, Kaminey, that is…) and Mom sat through the bit in K3G when Amitabh throws Shah Rukh out of the house before she looked at me and called me insane…

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