Stop Glorifying Rape: Times When 80s And 90s Hit South Indian Movies Pampered Rape Culture!

Times are changing now!

Sakalakala Vallavan (1982)




Kamal Haasan and Ambika’s 1982 blockbuster Sakalakala Vallavan had all the points to make it a box office hit. A dramatic script, popular star cast and let’s not forget a ‘much-needed’ rape seen (read sarcasm)! NOT! To bring out the protectiveness and the family savior character of the protagonist, the filmmaker brought in a rape seen where Kamal Haasan’s onscreen sister is raped by their landlord’s spoilt son. This leads to the main man making a plan to avenge the crime committed against his beloved sister. And what does he do? He gets his sister married to the rapist and he marries the rapist’s arrogant sister! Phew! You’ll be surprised how confusing this plot is. However, it made it to the ‘hit list’ and established Kamal Haasan as the commercially bankable star of Kollywood. Could the glorification of rape be avoided in this one?

Nattamai (1994)




Taking the favourite sequence of most of the filmmakers forward to the 90s, director K.S Ravikumar made sure the victim married the rapist. The movie starring Sarathkumar, Khushboo and Meena, was a huge blockbuster. However, everyone clapped their hand at the brilliant justice of the Panchayat head who decides to get the victim married to her rapist. She’s obviously grateful to him for saving her “honour” and for the rest of her life, she’s physically abused by her rapist husband. Talk about making the cut!


Naan Sigappu Manithan (1985)




A huge clap for the arrival of ‘Robinhood’ Rajinikanth on the silver screen. The blockbuster Naan Sigappu Manithan was all that the audiences needed for an entertaining film. However, Director S.A Chandrasekhar thought why not give the villain a chance to rape, go scoot free and then rape again, so the victim commits suicide. Then arrives the good old Robinhood brother who takes a revenge and teaches the villain a lesson. There couldn’t be another verdict given to the rape victim’s character in the film but suicide! Unhealthy and a dangerous trend!

There used to be multiple films made during the 80s and 90s back then – we are seeing a gradual change but we require much more. We need to see a woman defending herself when men attack her sexually, we need to see women take these upwards to the Court and succeed – we need more such inspiring stories for women in real life to stay confident and motivated.

Women need to stand up for others and for themselves for their powerful voice is stronger than the low-life society and the mindsets of the people within. If a woman targets something, there is no stopping her. SO, to all those women fighting any injustice in your lives, stay strong and keep your head held high – do not let anyone tell you otherwise.

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