Basmati Blues: One more Hollywood movie to feed the India stereotype
Hollywood never fails to discriminate India and the Indian culture. From the late 90s to the current era, the stereotypical portrayal of India continues. The trailer for Basmati Blues - starring Academy Award winner Brie Larson, has releases and Twitter users aren’t taking to the typical portrayal of India lightly. The 150-second trailer is at the receiving end of massive criticism for telling the story through the lens of a white savior, who saves the downtrodden farmers in India.
In the movie, Brie Larson plays an American scientist who works for a company which produces genetically modified rice. She is sent to India to convince farmers to buy this rice but soon realizes that the rice is sterilized, and then embarks on a mission to end the woes of these farmers. There's also the subplot of a romance with a local with a put-on accent in the narrative.
The film was shot many years ago but is only slated to open in India later this month. However, the stereotypical portrayal of India and a white American playing savior to the helpless villagers was too much to digest for scores of Indians.
With the trailer having led to many wrong interpretations of India, one of the producers of the film has released a statement following the cascade of criticism.
"We have heard a number of voices that have understandably reacted to a trailer that is not representative of the film as a whole. Unfortunately, the international trailer has given the wrong impression of the film's message and heart. This movie is not about an American going abroad to solve India's problems. At its heart, this film is about two people who reach across cultures, fight against corporate greed, and find love. Basmati Blues is an ensemble musical romantic comedy. The film explores our responsibility for our actions and for each other, and attempts to do it in a disarming way, using music, comedy, and romance," said producer Monique Caulfield to Refinery 29.
Given that the trailer has taken a beating, only time will tell whether Hollywood has taken a biased call on this movie or not.