Bollywood actress Kirti Kulhari’s latest release is a film called Shaadisthan, in which she plays an unapologetic woman who does not follow societal norms blindly. The movie depicts the meeting of two very different ideologies – one representing freedom of choice and the other following traditions. Kirti says that the film is called Shaadisthan because it criticises the undue importance given to marriages in India, something that the actress has felt in her own life as well.
“One of the main points of the film is the fact that we are a land of weddings. They happen in other countries too, but weddings are like a festival in India. The kind of tamasha that happens around a wedding – bet it love marriage or arranged – it is such an unnecessary deal and it is given so much undue importance in our country. Marriages are overrated, and I have realised this in my life. In my head, I had also made a big deal out of marriage that it is an essential part of success in life,” says the actress, who announced her separation from husband Saahil Sehgal in April 2021.
“It’s about all these ideas around marriage which prevail in our society, that’s why our film is called Shaadisthan. I really think it’s time to step back and take a look at marriage individually, from your own perspective, rather than just carrying the burden of ‘this is how it’s supposed to be’ decided by the society,” adds Kirti.
In the film, the actress plays the lead vocalist of a band that travels from Mumbai to a small town in Rajasthan. She is a free-spirited, empowered woman who doesn’t seek validation from the outside world. The narrative brings to light how unconventionality doesn’t equate to being morally wrong.
Kirti further explains, “What also is very interesting is the dialogue that happens in the film. These two very contrasting worlds come together, one is of Sasha, and the other of Nivedita, who’s representing a regular housewife who probably got married at the age of 18, and that’s the world she comes from. In between, you have the character of Arshi, who is being pushed into a marriage. This happens with a lot of men also, so the issue is not gender-based. The topic here is simple, are you given the freedom to make your own choices?”
Although the trip shows them going from Mumbai to Ajmer, Kirti insists the issues raised in the film are not restricted to rural India only. “You’ll be surprised how people living in big cities can also have a certain mindset. It’s not related to how educated you are or which strata you come from. So we are questioning the mindset. While we are showing a state like Rajasthan, which is also where I come from, and my director Raj Singh Chaudhary comes from, but the problem is not restricted to that state. It’s a problem of whole India,” she clarifies.
Shaadisthan is streaming now on Disney+ Hotstar.
Source: News 18