So, if you are a girl, and are anything like me, you have a passion for anything 19th c. novel-ly. Scott, Dickens, the Bronte Sisters, and of course the immortal Miss Austen have been your friends and playmates since you were but a wee slip of a girl. You long for an age of refinement and courtship--or at least enjoy fantasizing about it. You buy tickets in the first week for anything period, and keep up with the BBC's output of historical dramas and classics.
But you have tired of the clichéd girls' movie night fare of Pride and Prejudice--even though you, like every other red-blooded female in the Western world, do enjoy mooning over Colin Firth from time to time, and have lapped up even the most silly riffs on the Georgian Romance Theme, like the BBC's ridiculous but pleasurable Lost in Austen.
Luckily, there exists a solution to this quandary of movie ennui: you can satisfy your desire to slip into another time, immerse yourself in the minutia of domestic life, and imagine epic romance by picking up a good Bollywood film. I recommend anything with Aishwarya Rai in it for beginners. Try Taal, on of my favorites, or the Indian version of Sense and Sensibility, Kandukonden Kandukonden (See a music video from this movie here). On Netflix instant watch right now are some other pleasurable light Bollywood films, like What's your Rashee?, and the gorgeous, though more heavy, Delhi 6.
Now, call over your like-minded girlfriends, sample some of the more spicy fragrances, like Vivienne Westwood’s Anglophilia, anything sandalwoody, or, if you can get your hands on them, Indian Attars, make some chai in a big pot and prepare some kheer, order Indian, and plop yourselves in front of the tv, preferably with food all spread out in front of you and with a lot of cushions so you can experiment with seating Indian style. You are in for a long haul--Indian movies tend to last about three hours--but it will so totally be worth it! You'll get romance, adventure, awesome songs, lovely dancing, and beautiful people galore, and never have to leave your house. It's like a mini vacation from your normal life. And take a nice intermission and have drinks to discuss the events of the movie. then sit down again and let it all wash over you. I truly think Bollywood offers some of the mot pleasurable movie-watching ever, and its campiness and bad English translation often only adds to a charm. Try it, and see what I mean.