Thappad is a movie directed by Anubhav Sinha with Tapsee Pannu on the lead role. This movie is a profound message pertaining to domestic violence against women. Tapsee Pannu has done a great job in portraying the lead character and I believe no one could have done a better job than Tapsee herself. Tapsee being a valiant actress who unlike most of the other Bollywood celebrities’ fiercely speaks her heart and is known for her roles in movies like Pink, Mulk, Naam Shabana which are yet again amazing movies carrying strong messages.
The movie is focused on the life of Amu (Tapsee Pannu) who is married to a man named Vikram (Pavail Gulati). Her marital life is centered on her husband and her in-laws. Amu is that dutiful wife who finds nothing wrong in prioritizing Vikram’s dreams over hers. Vikram, a good husband, who is stuck between his work lives, at times ignores Amu’s efforts in keeping the family together. Both of their lives shatter when Vikram slaps Amu at a party during the heat of the moment. The watershed moments cleared the faults in their relationship, which Amu was intentionally ignoring. She began to realize her worth and choose a path that did not suit the patriarchal minds of society.
The movie not only raised the issue of domestic violence but under the surface also depicts how the individuality of a woman is lost after her marriage and her identity is often associated with her husband’s name. Amu’s maid Sunita falls prey to her husband’s violence multiple times. Not only her but Amu’s lawyer Netra despite being an independent woman often finds herself trapped in her husband’s sexist attitude. Anubhav Sinha has tried to show how women undergo mental or physical subjugation in their marriage which he has portrayed through these characters.
In our society, a woman is considered passive sex where she is expected to place her husband above her and should never do anything which may bring shame upon her family. This mental conditioning of society is passed on from generation to generation. In the movie when Amu decided to file a divorce with Vikram she is constantly warned by her mother and her mother in law to bear with the slap because the repercussions of the divorce may harm her whole life ahead. Our society always sees a divorced woman with a raised brow. Even if the woman is independent, she always faces criticism for being a divorcee.
When the whole movie is based on woman subjugation, a character like Sachin Sandhu (Kumud Mishra) becomes a ray of hope. Sachin (Amu’s father) throughout the movie stands firm with his daughter’s decision. He is one of the few people who is not prey to the patriarchal society and believes in treating everyone with respect. In one of the scenes when Sachin’s own son is about to slap his fiancée he, a man with principles takes a stand for his to-be-daughter in law and asks his son to apologize. In the whole movie, character of Sachin Sandhu comes out to be a hero. Our society definitely needs more people like him.
Overall the movie is extraordinary which wounds the patriarchal society with a profound message that even if it’s just one slap or wholesome violence, no women should be made immune to it and expects to keep peace with it. Hats off to Anubhav Sinha and the entire team of thappad for coming up with a movie which has the ability to bring a positive change in society.
*the views expressed in the above article are of the writer and not winged club