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Five female protagonists leading the way on streaming platforms

“Let’s go to the movies this weekend” has a different ring to it these days. All one has to do, is grab a bucket of popcorn, or order in dinner, and settle down in the living room. The explosion of the audience for streaming movies has caused a shift in viewing experiences. The public is interested to watch a wide variety of movies, in different languages and genres.

Some of the movies in 2022, were fronted by extremely capable, tremendously talented female artists. This is a trend that one hopes continues; the sheer mix of content and themes, both for the audience and the actors is fantastic.

Here is a list of a few such movies currently streaming, cutting across language and themes:

‘Mili’ – Netflix
Remake of a Malayalam movie, the movie takes the audience through a terrifying night, spent by Mili, played by Janhvi Kapoor, in the freezer room of her place of work. Locked in by mistake, she goes through a horrific five hours, trying to survive at -18 °C, while her family, launches a search for her all over the city, with the help of the police. Janhvi Kapoor, incidentally also played the titular role, in a comedy caper, ‘Good Luck, Jerry’.

‘Jaya Jaya Jaya Jaya Hey’ – Hostar
This Malayalam family drama, uses comedy very cleverly, to expose the patriarchal mindset of Indian society. Jaya, an intelligent young girl, is forced to discontinue her studies and get into a marriage that is far from perfect. When her husband raises his hand on her, she is compelled to help herself as no one, including her own family supports her. Darshana Rejendran plays Jaya, the protagonist who fights back in her own way against the unfair societal norms.

‘Qala’ – Netflix
Qala, is a psychological drama starring the very talented Tripti Dimri and Swastika Mukherjee. The movie explores the intense, bitter, relationship between a mother and daughter, that leads to pain and ruin of many lives. Qala, a young singer, always lived under the shadow of her domineering mother Urmila, also a singer. Things reach a head, when Urmila mentors an orphan, putting down Qala, who then embarks on a path of self-destruction and unhappiness.

‘Yashoda’ – Prime Video
An action thriller, ‘Yashoda’ is a Telugu language movie starring Samantha in the lead role. Yashoda, agrees to become a surrogate mother, due to compelling personal reasons. She moves into Eva, a state-of-the-art surrogacy centre where she befriends some of the surrogate mothers and spends time with them. All of them find out that each of them are poor, in need of money. As time goes on, Yashoda makes a disturbing discovery about the centre. Her battle to survive and get out of a horrifying trap forms the crux of the story.

‘Double XL’ – Netflix
A light hearted comic film, ‘Double XL’, looks at one of the serious issues facing young women today – body shaming, stereotypical, societal pressures due to obesity. Saira Khanna (Sonakshi Sinha) and Rajshri Trivedi (Huma Qureshi) play the protagonists as they navigate through situations that constantly question their worth and self-esteem. A feel-good movie, it addresses some troubling questions with humour as a tool.

Some of these movies give food for thought, some of them entertain and most of all, they present the female perspective. The audience gets to watch a wide variety of movies, they get to discover new variations of female actors through the streaming platforms, in the comfort of their homes.

By Tejusvini Varadachari