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'Animal' Is a Mirror to Patriarchy & Trauma Bond Scenarios That Exist Around Us

I applaud Sandeep Reddy Vanga for going all out on toxicity.

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Sandeep Reddy Vanga, a man with immense guts, who delivered some provocative pieces of cinema with movies like Arjun Reddy and Kabir Singh, came back with a promise of upping the ante with the movie Animal. And boy, is he a man of his word? Because he didn’t just give a blockbuster, ‘A’ rated, violent film but he also gave us the guilt of having an adrenaline rush while watching the same violence with world-class, total banger background music.

I applaud Sandeep Reddy Vanga for going all out on toxicity.

Ranbir Kapoor and Anil Kapoor in a still from Animal.

(Photo Courtesy: YouTube screengrab)

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That established, the movie also gave us something superlative.

It prompted us to find our moral compass to human societal structures and autocratic ideologies of patriarchy, daddy issues, misogyny and radical feminism.

Suddenly you’re either a good or a bad person based on whether you like or dislike the protagonist, Ranvijay Singh. But to be able to begin that discourse of polarity via cinema is what makes this movie exceedingly powerful.

I applaud Sandeep Reddy Vanga for going all out on toxicity.

The teaser for Ranbir Kapoor's highly anticipated film Animal dropped on Thursday, 28 September.

(Photo Courtesy: Twitter)

This was the latest film that has audiences and critics divided because at the end of the day “Film hi toh hai” didn’t cut it. Now the argument is simple, the movie is polarising and it has us taking sides. But let us look at the third lens, of it being a mirror to the patriarchy and trauma bond scenarios that exist all around us.

Film critic Sucharita Tyagi in her review of the film wrote, "It’s a film that’s neither entertaining nor has anything to say. The cinematic equivalent of a teenager having a hormonal temper tantrum.” She further wrote that the film showed violence for violence’s sake, sexism for sexism’s sake and declarations of masculinity only because one can.

Her words nullify the insight into a brewing narcissist enacted by Ranbir Kapoor in the name of “teenage hormonal temper.”
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Coming to Geetanjali (Rashmika Mandanna), Animal helps us identify the Geetanjali inside of us. We all have a masculine and a feminine side to us. Masculine energy is characterized by DOING and achieving and is moulded by logic and reason. The feminine is more intuitive, oriented towards receiving and allowing, and characterized by BEING. When these energies are balanced, we experience a greater sense of harmony and fulfilment.

And the movie time and again questioned our BEING. And that's why most people, including myself, called out the glorification of the anti-hero with zero consequences to his wrongdoings as extremely misogynistic. The dislike and rage in all of us came out as extreme disgust towards Ranbir's character when he cheated on his wife. Next was his audacity to ask Zoya (played by Triptii Dimri) to get on her knees and lick his boots to prove her love. To our disappointment, just like Geetanjali, Zoya too gave into her guilt and got on her knees, almost agreeing to lick his boots. We hated these scenes due to the lack of agency to these characters.

I applaud Sandeep Reddy Vanga for going all out on toxicity.

Ranbir Kapoor and Triptii Dimri in Animal.

(Photo Courtesy: Pinterest)

I believe that what they’re expressing is not plain love but a trauma response. I applaud SRV for going all out on toxicity. The silver lining lies in knowing right from wrong, knowing where to draw the line, in knowing one’s worth by practising self-love to keep narcissists and toxic alpha males and females at bay. If anything the movie helps us to equip our agencies towards men and women like these.

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Topics:  Animal movie 

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