Bollywood didn’t start to be the grand and glamorous multimillion entertainment industry it is today. Truth be told, the Indian film industry that is today generally referred to as Bollywood, has come through a lot of criticism and all-around bashing in the hands of those who accuse it of being anything but a true reflection of the act of real movie making.
Hilariously entertaining and even a little cheesy sometimes, but still, its movies are entertaining enough to make them a great way to spend some time with your family and friends. So, what is Bollywood?
Bollywood is the excitingly colorful and explosive world of Hindi Cinema; it is an aggregation of two words- Bombay and Hollywood; although Bombay is today known as Mumbai; it is still the epicenter of Hindi film production and is situated on the west coast of India.
Bollywood is a multi-million-dollar industry, producing on average, a staggering 1000 movies a year! Bollywood movies are becoming increasingly popular around the world resulting in it becoming the biggest movie industry by volume ahead of both Nollywood and Hollywood.
This article takes a look at 5 of the distinguishing features of Bollywood movies in no particular order
1. Bollywood movies are long
For anyone deciding on a Bollywood-made movie as their choice of entertainment; you have to realize that you are in for the long haul. To seat through a typical Bollywood movie is a testament to one’s discipline and determination. You have to be ready to be taken through, sometimes convoluted storyline involving a myriad of characters for at least 3 hours.
Well, you may be asking yourself why their movies are that lengthy; the reason is simple- emotional investment in the story. Bollywood filmmakers believe that with a longer movie, the audience will become truly engaged in the story and can better relate to the characters. But besides that, Indians are also accustomed to long durations of entertainment. Weddings for instance can go on for several days and festivals during the year can last from one to two weeks or more. Thus with a tradition of long-lasting entertainment, it’s fair that Indians have come to expect their movies to keep them equally entertained for long hours.
2. Bollywood movies are amazingly colorful
Another very obvious feature of Bollywood movies is their use of very elaborate and sometimes over-the-top costumes, makeup, and neon colors, especially by their women. Indian women in Bollywood movies are always faultlessly dressed in traditional saris, heavy jewelry, and extravagant amounts of makeup.
Indians as a people love colors and energy in everything and are therefore not ones to hold back or be subtle in those aspects in their movies.
3. Bollywood movies have repetitive plots
One of the criticisms that have been leveled against Bollywood movies is predictability. Many Bollywood movies have a common similarity and that is that their storyline appears to be repetitive. One of the most played out plots in Bollywood is that of the protagonist, usually, the male, falling in love with a woman from a recalcitrant or rich aristocratic family in opposition to such a relationship.
The story ends up revolving around the protagonist and his love interest fighting all odds and opposition to marrying and after a lot of singing, dancing, fighting, and emotional trauma, they are finally united. This storyline has been used so many times that you would expect it to have been worn out already. But despite that, Bollywood has continued to find ways to reinvent and retell the story in such ways that the movies continue to find national and international appeal in cinemas.
4. Bollywood movies have a lot of music and dancing
No movie out of India is a true Bollywood movie if it doesn’t have moments of music and dancing. That would be like having pancakes without any maple syrup on them or coffee without cream. Indian filmmakers often use music and dance as a way of spicing up their movies as well as a way for audiences to remember such movies. Some compositions are so memorable that they leave us singing to them long after the movies ended.
5. Bollywood movies always have a happy ending
Most movie-goers look forward to happy endings in movies and Bollywood movies don’t seem to disappointment in that aspect. Many of the Bollywood movies end with the protagonist and his love interest marrying at the end or two warring families reuniting or the antagonist being punished for his wrongdoings thereby bringing closure to the stories ensuring that the story has a definite end.
If you haven’t had the pleasure of experiencing all of the characteristics of a Bollywood movie mentioned above, I hope this article piques your interest enough for you to check out one…soon!
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Jul 20, 2021
by Eguaogie Eghosa