Cinema holds the power to shape the narratives make people sensitive about a variety of subjects. A proper treatment of something as important as representation of LGBTQIA community in Indian cinema is a rarity. You'd often find people from the community used as a matter of joke or not being given any depth or appropriate treatment in Bollywood. However, in the recent years, things have taken a slight shift as there has been movies which have a decent and just representation of the community.
As we are celebrating the pride month, here are a few of those films -
Film Badhaai Do is all about two gay people, one female and one love, who navigate through their individual relationships while being tied with each other through a lavender marriage. Shardul, a gay male, and Sumi, a lesbian woman, are the main characters of the movie. The plot focuses on how their family members will deal with the fallout of their tumultuous relationship.
Chandigarh Kare Aashiqui
Ayushmann Khurrana and Vaani Kapoor were seen in the main role in this. Manu (Ayushmann) meets and falls in love with Manvi (Vaani). Everything goes well unless he discovers that the women he is in love with is actually a transwoman. The plot focuses on Ayushmann's and his family's reaction to discovering the truth.
Shubh Mangal Zyada Saavdhan
Hitesh Kewalya's film Shubh Mangal Zyada Saavdhan contained an LGBT love story. Two lads urge their families to embrace gay marriage in this movie. With lots of laughter and entertainment, this movie shows the complications gay couple feel in their relationship.
Bomgay,' was released in 1996. The movie is based on gay poetry by R. Raj Rao. The poem is made up of six stories that show the twisted and secretive nature of LGBT identity in a metropolitan nation. This movie is a masterpiece in its own right and is a must watch.
The movie Fire, which came out in 1996, was the subject of a lot of controversy at the time. Namita Das and Shabana Azmi are in the lead role in the film which represents the story of two women who fell in love. Many people protested against this story about promoting homosexual relationships. If you have not seen it yet, do watch it.
Ajeeb Dastaan Hai Yeh, Bombay Talkies
The film followed a busy couple in Bombay, one of whom is secretly gay. It is also about a man who is trying to navigate life after coming out as gay. Karan Johar's film was lauded for taking an original approach to modern relationships.
The film 'Aligarh' (2016), beautifully presents the harsh reality of the culture and society, where a person is not allowed to choose his/her life partner. 'Aligarh,' based on a true tale, tells the narrative of Dr. Shrinivas Ramchandra Siras, a professor who was the target of a sting operation to determine his sexual orientation. Silas, who is rejected by his college and society, is eventually convinced to sue his university by a journalist. The film drew praise for its accurate portrayal.
Ek Ladki ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga
Sweety Choudhary, played by Sonam Kapoor, is the main character of the 2019 movie, Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga. She loves a girl, but she is afraid of society and her father, whether they will accept their relationship or not. That is why she agrees to marry a boy. Later, Sweety decides to stand up for her love for her family.
Margarita With A Straw
'Margarita with a Straw' (2014) was about a spunky girl who lives life to the fullest even with her disability. The story of the film depicts a same-sex love story, giving Indian audiences a taste of how love is also for those who are born with a disability.
Released in April 2022, this movie depicts the story of a budding author who explores his sexuality. Things take a turn when his sister falls for the guy who living in their house as a paying guest. The movie, apart from beautiful portrayal of homosexual relationship, was also applauded for amazing cinematography.