After Delhi embraced the Kiss of Love campaign to try and remove the taboo attached to kissing, we find out what lengths #Bollywood has gone to hide the smooch.
Remember the days when mommy would make you skip the end of Titanic and your cousin would later tell you that it was because the actors were going to K.I.S.S? Or the time when you wondered why movie after movie in #Bollywood had the flower fluttering scene? Till not long ago, kissing in front of an audience used to be a very big deal.
But now, its years later, you are a grown-up, and not only has our cinema embraced on-screen kissing, in real life too, kissing in public seems to have finally arrived.
Following the lead of Kochi’s Kiss of Love campaign, students from Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad as well as Kolkata are expressing their right to kiss publicly without the moral police telling them to feel ‘shame’.
As we are beginning to bid goodbye to the taboo attached with kissing openly – on-screen as well as off-screen – if you ever feel like looking back and laughing at the prudes, Bollywood gives you enough fodder.
Here’s a list of some of the most ‘ingenious’ ways in which kissing has been suggested but averted in the movies.
Cloaking it, literally – Aashiqui and Aashiqui 2
Mahesh Bhatt might be known for his ‘boldness’ in a Saaransh or a Murder or a Raaz, but for Aashiqui, the filmmaker chose to cloak the kissing scene, literally. The under-the-jacket kissing scene originally done by Rahul Roy and Anu Aggarwal in the 1990 Aashiqui and replicated by Shraddha Kapoor and Aditya Roy Kapoor in the sequel is a rare example of the ‘almost kissing’ scene in recent Bollywood movies.
One could even see it as an extension of the revolving umbrella scene in older movies like Raj Kapoor’s Shree 420, where the drenched actors looking into each other eyes in the rain suggested the kiss. Aishwarya Rai’s Umrao Jaan ditches the external kiss-cover, as her long hair serves the purpose of concealing the ‘intimacy’.
Decoding the kiss: Abhimaan
In this 1973 movie, when we are shown the marital bliss of the sureela couple, we see Amitabh Bachchan spelling it out for Jaya Bachchan “Agar tumhe darr lage na, tum meri taraf dekh lena, aur main aise karunga” (puts a finger on his lower lip and makes eyes at her). “Matlab?” she innocently asks. And he answers, “Iska matlab maine tumhe pappi di (that would mean I am kissing you).”
Just for the fun of getting his bride to blush, he does the ishaara at public gatherings and even while they are performing on the stage, in the movie and so, the actress as well the audience can decode his suggestion, but the rest of the characters in the movie remain ignorant about the gesture
Fluttering flowers – Mughal-e-Azam
Even the classic Mughal-E-Azam, which told the love story of Salim and Anarkali, relied on this trope for its makeout scenes. Fluttering flowers, pecking birds and shaking bushes have been Bollywood’s visual innuendo for kissing in innumerable movies.
The said movie even has the daasis’ fans cover the royal romance. From Farooque Sheikh to Shashi Kapoor and Deepti Naval to Rekha, most Bollywood actors of the 70s had to rely on flowers and bushes for their kissing scenes.