Today is International Female Orgasm Day, and as silly as it sounds, it's an important take on the issue. This day did not just come about as a campaign idea for some condom company, it focused on the idea of female sexuality and how important it is.
Female orgasms(the hush hush of sexual pleasure) are one of the most liberating expressions of female sexuality, just as it is for men. Sex has been viewed as a male experience for the longest time, and now women have had enough of it.
Women are talking about their sexual needs and wants out in the open, making their voices heard. Amid the male gaze and the lack of attention to female sexual health, these voices are a beginning of a sexual revolution.
Mainstream media plays a vital role in conveying these voices, and recently the Indian film industry has done its due diligence. From Dirty Picture to Lust Stories, female characters have explored their sexuality in a more liberated sense.
Bollywood and the censorship board has shied away from this exploration for decades, but now the scene has had its share of development.
While these movies still keep in mind the male gaze, the scenes also empower women to be more confident in their sexuality. So, let's take a look at these movies and their iconic scenes.
Lipstick Under My Burkha
The infamously controversial movie had its share of censorship trouble but made it through without compromising its take on female sexuality. Ratna Pathak, who played Usha in the movie, captured the sexual needs of an elderly woman in their true essence. Usha also portrays the experience of a female orgasm in its bare reality. Her affair with a younger man lived through strictly phone sex, encapsulated the longing and need for her to express her sexual desire.
The scenes are done in a very tasteful and fastidious manner, with very little space for male gaze-y undertones.
Veere Di Wedding
With the classic girl gang storyline, the movie wasn't a new concept but it did deal with a lot of issues that Bollywood prefers to hide under the covers. With a scene that talks about "charam sukh" to a scene that shows this "charam sukh" the movie encapsulates a fresh perspective on female sexuality.
Moving away from the taboo ideology associated with the female orgasm, it shows four friends openly talking about them and teasing each other about it.
Swara Bhaskar who plays Sakshi, visualized in a sexually frustrated scene is shown calming herself down with the help of a vibrator, achieving the ever so wanted orgasm she deserves. She unabashedly walks through the entire movie, giving importance to her sexual desires and accepting them as normal.
Vidya Balan took to the character of Silk Smitha in the most elegant manner. Though the movie was hyper-sexualized, there was no scope for sleaziness. The character she played was known for her unashamed expression of sexuality and Balan lived up to that standard.
The scene where Reshma, played by Balan, reaches her pleasure point was a very realistic representation of what most female orgasms are like. It wasn't overdone or distasteful, with just the right amount of oohs and aahs.
This anthology of four stories focused on female sexual relationships throughout. All four stories highlighted the sexual tendencies of women around the world. But one that truly stuck out was the story directed by Karan Johar.
The female orgasm was the main storyline in his cut. Neha Dhupia and Kiara Advani both brought light to the lack of importance of female satisfaction during sex. A vibrator is one of the main characters in the story, the lack of satisfaction Megha (Kiara Advani) faces in her marriage is made up for by this vibrator.
Though Megha's climax takes place at an unfortunate family gathering, the scene is truly powerful in its own sense. And when confronted by Paras (Vicky Kaushal) she does not feel ashamed about the act in itself, though she does regret its location and time.
Watch https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PbqbD9IhWaU to see a more detailed review of the movie.
What We Think
While the industry is lacking quality content, using the same washed up plot lines and concepts, once in a blue moon we get a movie that deserves a lot of appreciation.
Female sexuality is a taboo topic in India, and only through normalizing the idea can we move past it. Mainstream media has the obligation as a social platform to help the cause and shed some light on the issue.