Why the feminist uproar against Shahid Kapoor’s Kabir Singh does not make sense 

The Bollywood superstar Shahid Kapoor has impressed the millions of hearts again with his extraordinary talent in his latest released Bollywood film ‘Kabir Singh’ in June 2019. The movie casts Shahid Kapoor in the lead role of a young, possessive and a short-tempered surgeon who turns into a deeply flawed character on losing his love. This is a remake of a Telugu movie Arjun Reddy by the same director Sandeep Vanga.

Because this film is unlike those stereotype love stories and the emotional family dramas, it has to go through the discussion mode where the critics are more dominant than the praises.


The movie critics are highlighting that the lead role lacks rationale and reason and represents a bad youth icon. The pointing fingers are not just on the storyline but on the characters portrayed in the film too claiming that such films are deteriorating the society’s ethics and culture by glamorising misogyny and toxic masculinity

It cannot be denied that films play a vital role in depicting human lives, characters, and behaviour; “But to such an extent where thoughts start moving with the movie settings and the screen characters”? Real life is so liquid that it floats with the Reel life in just one movie watch?

These questions were raised when there were statements published in a few social media sites and online news channels relating to the movie critics. One such statement said, “Dear Men, Please Don’t let Kabir Singh Convince You that Women Like Dominating and Possessive Lovers”. 


The discussion from good to bad drastically changed to the movie being titled an “anti-feminist”, with the publishing of such and similar statements across the social media sites.

Actors are talented, prolific and provocative to their core and therefore when they are in their given roles, perform brilliantly and that’s what is praised by the viewers and movie lovers and the same was justified with the movie Kabir Singh too. 

Few popular online reviews sites were targeted to find out if the movie really has negative impacts on the public and the process started with one of the most popular review sites IMDb which was found to have a super hit score for Kabir Singh and has more than 90% claps with promotion phrase as Must Watch.

Another most trusted and reliable source ‘Google Users reviews’ has 94% likes for the film and that is enough to shout out loud “Don’t Miss to Watch”! 

Global and very frequently used online movie booking website Book My Show reflected 88% likes for Kabir Singh which is the highest score of 2019 for the Bollywood movies. 

Apart from the trusted and most reliable movie reviews websites, if you incline towards the other websites or online news channels, you will get the different aspect of the movie. Other than highlighting the movie’s critics, the storyline and the characters in the movies are being titled as anti-feminist whereas there were no remarks about calling the film an ‘anti-feminist’ by the audience.

So who is feeling it that way? The media or the “woke” millennials?? Are these group of people trying to satisfy their political needs and trying to get attention from society?? 

It is a proven fact that Feminism has become the hottest slogan in advertising across the nation and because feminism and empowerment have gained so much popularity that any ongoing hit discussion if gets related to feminism, will definitely get more steps in.


Feminism as a product of capitalism


This is exactly what has happened with Shahid Kapoor’s Kabir Singh. We have to accept that when films show the kind side of terrorists doesn’t support terrorism and so when the male chauvinist character is portrayed by the lead role doesn’t mean anti-feminism is being promoted. Making a feminist issue out of every single character played on TV or cinema is not just restricting art but also ruining entertainment. 

Just because the male character in the movie has been assigned to play a dominant role doesn’t prove that the cinema industry and the Bollywood superstar Shahid has intentions to support anti-feminism similar to when the film “Jab We Met” had female dominant role had nothing to do with feminism. So it is completely justified when said feminist uproar against Shahid Kapoor’s Kabir Singh does not make sense.


About Surabhi Pandey 284 Articles
A former TV Presenter at Doordarshan Delhi​, Surabhi is the author of 'Nascent Wings' and 'Saturated Agitation'. She is a freelance journalist focused on Lifestyle and Social commentaries. She has been writing in this space for six years. Her work has appeared in numerous media outlets, including the Times of India, YP SG, Lifestyle Collective, Youth Ki Awaaz and Re:ad Poetry among others. She also writes Tech articles that have appeared on Tech Collective, Kr Asia, SBO.SG, SYNC PR, Entrepreneur and e27. She is the founder of The Vent Machine.

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