Movies- a reflection of our environment, characteristic of society’s new trends, steeped in the coolest words of the month, Director Gauri Shinde masterfully brings all 3 components together in her latest ‘ Dear Zindagi’
How else would a psychologist become a DD- Dimaag ka doctor and the pursuit of THE partner be explained as the journey of finding the right chair.
Mental illness has always been a taboo, sometimes I think even more than HIV. In true Indian fashion, it took a Deepika Padukone recently to bring the matter to the forefront, and now its SRK and Alia Bhatt who are helping add style and cool quotient to the otherwise stigma.
The funny thing about the Dimaag ka Doctor is that in life, we all ‘need’ and actually should ‘visit’ every once in a while. Like the customary eye test, the standard blood tests etc why should our dimaag not get the routine makeover?
The brain- a reservoir of feelings, emotions, thoughts, wishes is well guarded by our personal watchman- the Ego and while we think we can handle it all, there are many hints our bodies give us to tell us otherwise… And that’s what I love about Dear Zindagi. It takes a bout of sleepless nights, a physical symptom, for Alia Bhatt aka ‘Kaira’, to gather the courage to go to SRK aka Jehangir Khan, a therapist.
The setting of the film is perfect- a young woman cinematographer trying to make her way in the big bad world of movies, constantly in and out of relationships topped with a strained relationship with the parents having to move out of her Mumbai apartment because she is ‘single’.
Reality depicted in reel did you say? Yes.
As Kaira, moves to Goa for a break, the director takes a leaf from every parent’s book and so start the interrogations
‘Are you Lebanese ?’ asks Uncle
‘Oho! Lebanese nahi Lesbian !’ chides the Aunty followed by the usual suspect
‘Why don’t you settle down ? ‘
The interrogation dinner is enough to send Kaira running off to stay with her friend away from the family madness.
Cut to sleepless nights and the entry of the DD ( Dimmag ka Doctor) SRK.
ShahRukh’s casual demeanor , cool clothing, super hot beard and most importantly toned down over-acting makes him not only a delight to watch, but also makes one wish for a therapist like him who can help you with the small things in life.
As the film continues to dwell into Kaira’s past, her innermost fears and how it has affected her life, Dr Khan not only helps her de-clutter her life, but also makes her fall in love.
In my personal case, over the last couple of years my partner and I seem to have automatically become each other’s therapist. Long drives that started as exactly that, long drives, have now become our dimmag ka doctor sessions- a space where neither judges, scolds or tries to offer solutions to the other on problems or those ‘life’ questions that keep popping up. It’s a time that we use to bare our soul, not to the other but actually to ourself. And the fact that it’s done out of the house, actually makes us more vulnerable to open up but less vulnerable to feeling hurt.
In the end, the film reminds us yet again, if we don’t learn to ‘ Love you Zindagi’ it’s going to be the most miserable journey you have ever been on!