At first viewing, the video above, a song called ‘Hum To Hain Aandhi’ from Bhoothnath, features a school fight in a sight most reminiscent of West Side Story, but with kids and, obviously, in Hindi. There is little need to go into detail about the film, as this post takes the video above as it’s context and subject matter. More details of the film can be found Here.

When one watches the film closer it is possible to see that the video, in all its parts, is symbolic of Bollywood but viewed at a different scale. The meaning of this symbolism will be discussed below. Firstly, the dress of the actors could easily be the dress of any recent Bollywood actor/actress, whether appearing in a film or not.

Secondly, the dance moves are not transfigured for children, they are simply standardised Bollywood moves performed by children. Thirdly, the music and lyrics are in some ways out of place for a children’s film. The song’s title can be translated as “I am a Sand Storm”. The song also has lyrics, powerfully sung, such as “I am a sand storm, I am a rain storm”. While the music is not out of place of any recent Bollywood film. Which leads to the fourth point, which is the setting and costume changes. The setting is urban, and in many ways divorced from what is happening within the film at the time, an element seen many times within Bollywood. In this way so are the costume changes, of which there are several. It is not until the song ‘gets going’ that the scenes switch to that of the school playground.

It is in these ways that ‘Hum To Hain Aandhi’ is symbolic of Bollywood. It does not reference or imply a relationship with any particular film or actor, but instead with Bollywood as a whole. One could watch this video and learn much about contemporary Bollywood songs. The children are what make this point even more powerful. The fact that it is children not simply pretending to be Bollywood actors but acting along the same lines. The children cause the song to be ‘cute’ and ‘adorable’.

What this video becomes therefore, is satire of the highest kind, in two ways. The first is that it takes itself entirely seriously. The second is that through the videos existence it is possible to laugh at mainstream Bollywood songs and point to the kinds of theatrics and particular tropes presented to the film watcher. Tropes that are invariably not picked up on.

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