PINK: “no, means no”

I just finished watching the movie Pink, starring Amitabh Bachan. I loved it, found it beautiful. It is amazing and poignant, and makes clear, defined points about what sexual assault and society, and what a woman’s rights are. 

The movie begins with three girls entering their home, interspersed with shots of three boys taking their friend, who has a head injury, to the hospital. The boys speculate about what they will do to these girls. 

This opening shot in itself was so very strong. It was the aftermath of something. We don’t know what yet, but these girls are somber, and worried. 

Soon after, the harassing starts. Their landlord gets told to evict them. Minal, the main person in this conflict, gets threatening phone calls.

Andrea gets sent a threatening message when out with her friend, the boys chase her in their car. 

Falak calls the boys, asking to reason with them. 

When Rajvir, the boy with the injury, continually calls Minal terrible names, Falak snaps, telling the boys that she won’t deal with it any more. 

The girls then file a complaint. 

You can feel the sense of hopelessness radiating off of them, it’s heartbreaking. 

Then, walking home one night, Minal gets kidnapped. These same boys violate her, and tell her that’s there is more to come.

This scene is almost unbearable to watch because it’s so raw. 

When Mr. Deepak Sehgal, played by Amitabh Bachan, sees the kidnapping and tries to report it, there’s no sense of urgency or fear from police. 

Minal returns, fearful and dead eyed. 

Then, she is arrested. 

The boys had filed a complaint against her, saying it was an attempt to murder that she hit him, and as much as Falak and Andrea try, there’s nothing they can do. 

I won’t spoil much more, except to pull out some specific details. 

There’s multiple times when the opposing lawyer attacks the three women’s characters, repeatedly insisting that they calculated this to solicit, that women dressed like that who are drinking are not good women. 

And the response they give?

So? What does that mean? That women who are friendly, drink, or wear western clothes must be wanting sex?

Later, Falak snaps as the opposition lawyer backs her into a corner. She ‘admits’ to taking money for sex. But, she continues, Minal changed her mind. She said no. And he kept going. Is this allowed, by the law?

And in doing so, she broke the opposition’s main argument. What doesn’t it matter, if they took money, or if they were drunk? She said no. It was in self defense that she hit him with a bottle. 

“These boys must realize that no means no. A woman who says no could be an acquaintance, a friend, a girlfriend, a sex worker, or even your own wife. No means no and when someone says No, you stop.”

(quote is translated from Hindi)

I think this movie was amazing in its message, and I love it for that. But I also love the gorgeous cinematography, the realism of the portrayal of Indian rape culture, and the beautiful music. 

(This is the song I listened to from it while writing this. It’s phenomenal, highly recommend it.)

Also, if anyone was concerned like I was, the movie is very sad in the beginning but is not hopeless or depressing all the way though. Would definitely not watch with anyone under 16. If someone who anxiety or past experiences with sexual harassment, it could be not great for them either. 

This movie is in Hindi, but subtitles are pretty great. 

It’s about two hours long, and you can find it on Netflix.

These kinds of darker more serious movies usually arent my type but I seriously loved this movie. 

The acting is also incredible, with an Indian screen legend costaring with actors new to big movies. 

Highly highly recommend it. 

If some of you do watch it, or have already seen it, please come and tell me what you thought of it!


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