I Would Not Choose to Watch Films Like ‘RRR’ and ‘Pushpa,’ States Naseeruddin Shah

During a recent episode of the “Be A Man, Yaar!” podcast hosted by Nikhil Taneja, the renowned Indian actor Naseeruddin Shah made a guest appearance and shared some thought-provoking insights that sparked conversations among viewers and fans.

When Nikhil inquired about his views on the growing fascination of audiences with hyper-masculine portrayals in cinema, citing films like “Kabir Singh,” Naseeruddin Shah expressed his perspective. He believed that the heightened emphasis on masculinity in films was a response to the increasing insecurity among men in society. He then cited examples from the film industry, mentioning the 2022 movie “RRR” and 2021’s “Pushpa: The Rise – Part 1,” explaining that he found it challenging to watch these two highly popular and critically acclaimed films due to their extreme portrayal of masculinity.

He stated, “I couldn’t watch ‘RRR’ and ‘Pushpa.’ However, I did watch Mani Ratnam’s ‘Ponniyin Selvan’ because he is a distinguished filmmaker with no hidden agenda. I cannot comprehend what people find in these films. I personally would not choose to watch them.” While he offered a negative assessment of “RRR” and “Pushpa: The Rise – Part 1,” he praised filmmaker Mani Ratnam’s historical action-drama “Ponniyin Selvan,” which explored similar themes but, according to Naseeruddin, approached masculinity more thoughtfully and skillfully.

In February 2023, the actor commended South Indian films, including those from the Tamil, Kannada, Malayalam, and Telugu film industries, for their greater creativity and honesty in storytelling compared to many Hindi films released each year, as reported by Hindustan Times. He added that while South Indian films might occasionally fall short in terms of style, they consistently excel in character development and storytelling.

“RRR,” directed by SS Rajamouli, received a Golden Globe Award nomination in the Best Foreign Language Film category and won the Golden Globe Award for Best Original Song for “Naatu Naatu.” “Pushpa: The Rise – Part 1,” helmed by Sukumar and featuring Allu Arjun in the lead role, emerged as a significant box-office success, grossing over INR 3.65 billion, according to The Times of India. Similarly, “RRR” achieved blockbuster status by amassing over INR 11 billion in worldwide earnings.

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