The Ajay Devgn and Rakul Preet starrer De De Pyaar De is about an older man falling in love with a woman half his age. While Ajay plays a fifty year old, Rakul is half his age. But does age really matter when it comes to love? Well, a lot of our Bollywood celebrities like Priyanka Chopra, Saif Ali Khan and Kareena, Sanjay Dutt etc. have proved that it really doesn’t. Why should it? Age is just a number after all.
De De Pyaar De is not the first film in Bollywood, which has been made on such a subject, there are other films which have been made in the past. While some of them did work, some didn’t do that well at the box office even though the films were well made. The reason is probably because those films came before their time. Today, the audience has changed and so have mindsets.
Yash Chopra’s Lamhe, starring the late Sridevi and Anil Kapoor always remains one of my favorite Bollywood romances and most of us who grew up with reading Mills and Boons would agree. A young Anil Kapoor falls in love with an older Sridevi while she loves someone else. The tables however turn years later when Sridevi’s young daughter falls head over heels in love with a much older Anil Kapoor! It was a beautifully written script, a well made film too and one of the most progressive stories. But sadly the film didn’t do well, had it been released today, the film would have been a superhit.
Amitabh Bachchan’s Cheeni Kum, that released in 2007, was a completely fresh and new kind of romance, where an older man falls in love with a younger woman (Tabu). Even her father is younger than him! It was a beautifully made, quirky story, and it changed the way people looked at romance. Amitabh looked dapper in his ponytail look in the film The film was a huge hit. While Cheeni Kum was loved by the audience, Amitabh’s other film, Nisabdh, where he falls in love with his daughter’s friend, received a lot of flak
While an older man falling in love with a younger woman was still acceptable to some extent, in our country, an older woman falling in love with a younger man was not only looked at with raised eyebrows, but a taboo too.
When the Akshay Kumar and Rekha starrer, Khiladiyon Ka Khiladi, was released in 1996, the audience, and critics alike wrote the film off. People were not ready to accept the idea of a younger man falling in love with a much older woman. But years later, in 2009, there was another film, Wake Up Sid, which had a fresh graduate (Ranbir Kapoor), not only falling in love but also living in with an older, independent woman (Konkona Sen Sharma). The film was a huge hit, and loved by all.
In 2016, when Ranbir Kapoor romanced an older woman (Aishwarya Rai) once again, in Ae Dil Hai Mushkil, people accepted it as being pretty normal! That itself is proof enough, that the sensibilities are changing, and so are the tastes of the audience.
Ajay and Rakul’s De De Pyaar De couldn’t have come at a better time!