By Kriti Rana
Dear Dad, released in 2016, is a coming of age film that revolves around a special bond formed between a teenager and his dad while on an unplanned road trip.
If you haven’t heard of this film, it’s okay. Very often brilliant movies passed by unnoticed because of lack of publicity, low budget of the film and the lack of “big names” in the lead roles. All of these apply to this amazing film.
The reason why I think that this movie is amazing is simple. It’s because this film deals with an unconventional plot in a very realistic way without making it too serious.
What makes the plot so unconventional?
This is the story of a father coming out of the closet (just to clarify, NOT LITERALLY) to his teenage son while on a road trip together.
What ensues next is a series of attempts where the son tries to “cure” the sexuality of his father.
The son consults with his best friend and comes up with solutions such as decorating the walls of the hotel washroom with pictures of women from magazines consulting a shady “baba” and using his “medicine” which ultimately leads to food poisoning, this film is the journey of the son accepting his father for who he is without becoming too serious for the audience and with its fair share of comic relief.
Not to forget the “celebrity” that the father-son duo met on the way and give a lift to. His reaction when he finds out that the father is gay is priceless and is quickly normalised when the father says “You’re not my type”.
Throughout the road trip, the father struggles to get his son to accept him for who he is. Thus it is heartbreaking when they part ways without resolving the issue. As heartbreaking as this is, a few months down the line when they meet again and the son finally accepts the father, that minor heartbreak makes this the most precious scene ever.
The reason I love Dear Dad is not just because of how it handles the issue of sexuality but also because of the way it depicts the bond between a parent and the child. This movie shows that if we truly love someone, then acceptance will eventually come, even if it takes a little while.
This acceptance is brought out in a dialogue by the son “Oh how I wish that my father was interested in women, but he isn’t” to clarify a misunderstanding that takes place.
The fact that both the parents of the son remain friends even after the divorce (due to the father’s sexuality), though not a major plot point is also worth appreciating.
This friendship can be seen when the protagonist says to his ex-wife in reference to her date “Isn’t he a little old for you?” and she replies “At least he is straight“.
Different from mainstream Bollywood movies
This movie was a breath of fresh air in a world where most Bollywood movies have a guy who sees a girl, claims to have fallen in love with her and then stalks her till she says yes.
Oh and throw an evil villain and some violence in there.
While there have been truly amazing movies like Kapoor and Sons, Pink, Dangal, and Neerja in the recent years, we need to realise that all these movies star popular faces and that is why they came into limelight.
Very often brilliant movies such as Dear Dad passed by unnoticed simply because of the lack of a popular face.
Not only do we need more movies like Dear Dad, we also need to acknowledge and to try and bring such films into the mainstream.
Image Sources: Google Images
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