Domestic violenceIndia: Netflix audiences jump on "Darlings"
Starring Bollywood actress Alia Bhatt, Shefali Shah and Vijay Varma in the lead roles, Darlings is the story of a young Muslim couple in love – and violence and revenge. The film opens with the lovers – Badrunissa (Bhatt) and Hamza (Varma) – deciding to get married, but theirs is not a happily-ever-after story.
Three years into the marriage, the couple have made a home in a lower middle-class housing tenement, but Badrunissa is sleeping with the enemy. He's the classic abuser, who batters her every night and says sorry in the morning. His justification for hitting – and her acceptance of it – is love. "Yes, I'm a bastard, but I hit you only because I love you," he says.
And she is a victim who lives in denial, believing that he'll come around if only she can make him stop drinking or if she has a child to cement their relationship.
But when the savagery continues and he finally crosses a line, rage takes over and halfway through the film, the tables are turned – the abused, with a lot of help from her mother Shamshunissa (played by Shefali Shah), becomes the abuser.
My last interview for #GulfNews is with #Bollywood's 'Little Miss Sunshine' @aliaa08 as she talks about her @NetflixIndia film #Darlings and why the film - which she also produces - shocked her at every turn #AliaBhatt (PS: they have fixed the typo) https://t.co/P06YepumXw
— Bindu Rai (@BinduRai) August 17, 2022