The movie is Rab Ne Bani di Jodi, a Bollywood megahit from India. A middle-aged man who is no less than a bespectacled nerd, shy, and not much of a ladies man (well, he admits to his new wife he has never so much as even been on a date) ends up marrying the beautiful young Taani after her fiance dies on their wedding day in a bus crash. Surinder (Suri for short) is the stand-in, the man her dying father requests she marry so that he knows she is safe in the world without him. She agrees to her father's wish, and Suri becomes her husband. However, Taani is grieving and unhappy so Suri sleeps in the attic to allow her time to recover. He does not force himself on her. He then tries everything in his power to make her happy again and, at the climax of the movie, is even willing to leave her his home (the one he had before he married) and go quietly out of her life if she cannot be happy with him.
Is that not inspiring? And what of Veer-Zaara? In this Hindi movie, Veer, a Hindu man, tells the Muslim girl he has fallen in love with (and who is about to return to Pakistan to marry the man her father has chosen for her, a political match, a cold, controlling sort of man) that Zaara should always remember that "across the border is a man who would die for her." Eventually, he rushes to save her and spends seventeen years in jail protecting her name. What a guy! I want one of him!
And, finally, the longest running Indian movie of all time, Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge Dilwane (known as DDLJ) which just reached its 650th week showing in Mumbai! Now THAT's a run! Two Brits born of Indian parents, Raj falls in love with Simran on a Swiss holiday but she is going to go to India to get married. Raj follows her there and attempts to win the family's heart. He dearly loves Simran and he hopes her father will see his great love for his daughter and consent to their marriage. He is a good young man who would not break the hearts of the family by eloping with the daughter. What morals!
While wars rage aound us and men kill their wives and mothers kill their children, there are still pockets of beauty that exist in men, in women, and in the imaginations of us all. If we as a human race can understand the sentiment of Raj ne Bani di Jodi, then perhaps we are not doomed. Perhaps if we all are able to see God in others, then 2009 will be a better year.
Happy New Year to all of you at Women in Crime Ink, contributors and readers. May you all have a Suri, a Veer or a Raj in your life this year and let's encourage the next generation to become like them.
And, for a little more sweetness, the music video from RNBDJ or for Shahrukh at his most romantic, a music video from Veer-Zaara or for Shahrukh showing undying love, check out this one from KKKG. Oh, and for very sexy Shahrukh, check out this one from Om Shanti Om.
Enjoy! Happy New Year!