When it comes to portraying Indian history and lineage, the art industry rarely ever seems to get it right. Whether it may be books or movies based on the rich culture, they are more fiction than fact. While one does not expect the piece of fiction to be entirely true to history, and claiming to make a historical novel requires some degree of license in itself. But what is not expected is a far-off disconnect from the reality.
Today, many novels and films are based on stories set in the Mughal era in India. These movies talk about womenfolk sitting at dining tables, attending courts, talking to unrelated men freely. What the authors forget to make a research about is the highly stigmatic Purdah Law prevalent at that time.
No doubt about the storyline and the well-developed characters of the story.But what is this complete liberty to be showing the characters to eat anything and everything? Sometimes, things like these fall flat on the face when the people are described to be eating lemons, olives and other food items whose basic essence is European in itself.
Nobody expects little intricate details for the makers to remember. But isn’t a historical movie about the behavior, culture, and knowledge of the people at that time of history in essence? Additionally, when writing fiction, it is always these small details that make a big impact.
Same is the vase with Indian film industry also. Although no one doubts it has produced some marvelous flicks in the recent times. But the writers and directors always seem to merge the gaps between myths and realities.
The directors need to remember that folklores are just tales passed down from generation to generation and cannot be accounted for facts. This is where much Indian historical fiction falters.
The main reason for these issues is because as Indians, we like to watch blood, gore, larger-than-life romances, and magnificent structures. A book or movie based on solid complete research makes for a dry narrative with no song and dance.
This is probably the reason why History was always the least favorite subject among our school textbooks.