We’ve seen a number of father-daughter relationships on screen, but they’re not always relatable. From fathers who keep teaching their daughters about Parampara, Pratishta and what not to daughters who are far from reality – there’s an emotional distance that we mostly see in Bollywood movies. But with changing narratives, we’re also coming across subtle and honest portrayals, that feel good to watch.
Films and shows are now trying to show the relationship as something too pure for the world.
1. Champak & Tarika – Angrezi Medium
Irrfan’s character Champak, comes from a specifically molded family, that has been rigid in its perspective towards women. But, he turns out to be doting father to his daughter, Tarika. Like any father and daughter, there are gaps in their relationship, but that doesn’t dismiss the constant bond of friendship that they build. Champak relies on Tarika for keeping an emotional balance, while Tarika finds her entire family in her father.
2. Jayant & Amrita – Thappad
With Thappad, Bollywood gave us a father we wish to see more often on-screen. Jayant was a breath of fresh air, among the ever-so-angry Bollywood fathers. He was a constant cheerleader to Amrita and made sure that he didn’t impose his opinions on her. He gave her the space that every child deserves – all of it while also standing up for her decisions. Their relationship was something new, yet honest to look at.
3. Brij Bhushan & Rinki – Panchayat
We’ve fallen in love with Panchayat for a lot of reasons, and the relationships portrayed in the web-series is one. Brij Bhushan AKA Pradhan ji is a regular desi father that we might come across in our own lives. But, his relationship with Rinki is different from what we might expect from him. From their inside jokes to Brij Bhushan taking a stand for her – they’re a delight to watch on-screen.
4. Narrotam & Bitti – Bareilly Ki Barfi
Bareilly Ki Barfi took a fresh approach in portraying a father-daughter relationship in mainstream Hindi cinema. Narrotam and Bitti are not the regular kind – they smoke together while venting about life and it’s problems. Narrotam makes Bitti feel less like a misfit, in a society that keeps trying to prove otherwise. Unlike other on-screen fathers, his ultimate dream is not to marry off his daughter. On the other hand, Bitti knows how to keep the balance while being both a dotting daughter and a friend to her father.
5. Mohinder Brar & Maanvi – Chandigarh Kare Aashiqui
The film, while touching an important subject, also kept intact the emotional importance of a parent-child bond. Maanvi’s father stands up as an ally, even when her entire family is against her transition. He makes sure that his daughter knows that nothing can influence how he feels for her. And, while Maanvi is constantly fighting her battles, she doesn’t expect her father to act as a shield. Instead, she releases his guilt of not being able to do enough.
6. Bhashkor & Piku – Piku
Bhashkor and Piku do not always agree on things, and Piku acts as a support system who keeps it together for the both of them. Bhashkor is shown as a firm and rigid father, but he also realizes somewhere that his daughter is an individual. He’s quite literally the opposite of sanskari Bollywood fathers – in his feminist methods and parenting. And, their bond is perhaps the most honest portrayal of the emotions that build-up from a generation gap.
7. Yash & Supriya – Mai
While Mai was mostly about a mother’s fight for her daughter. But, we also witnessed a subtle and pure father-daughter duo in Yash and Supriya. Yash is shown as a father who’s there for his daughter, but in doing so he doesn’t consume her space to be herself. Surpiya not only opens up to her father about her relationship, but also discusses the issues that she had been dealing with. Their bond isn’t shown with a lot of screen-time, but it comes off naturally with how Yash describes his daughter.
8. Rani & Her father – Queen
The film started off with the regular portrayal of a father who finds a match for his daughter, dreaming of walking her down the aisle. But, we see a development in his character, where he wants Rani to do what’s best for her. Understandably, he’s shown worried about Rani living alone in a different country, but he tries not to burden her with his emotions. Their relationship grows to from an understanding that we’ve not always seen in films.
9. Bipin & Alia, Isha – Shaandaar
Bipin is shown as a constant support of both his daughters, Isha and Alia. While the family isn’t always sympathetic to their emotions, he knows how to cheer them up. He not only appreciates and loves Alia immensely, but also takes a stand when it’s needed. For instance, he knew that Isha deserved someone better than a guy who constantly shames her for her body. When it comes to Alia and Isha, they’re shown having a more honest relationship with their father than anyone else in the family.
10. Shruti & Her Father – Band Baaja Baaraat
Shruti’s father portrayed by Vinod Verma, was different and yet not a preachy character. He gave Shruti enough space to explore what she liked and didn’t force her into a path. He was also respectful of her relationships, and didn’t make her feel any less if they didn’t work out. Their relationship had the perfect balance of concern and space, which was refreshing to watch at the time.
Deep down, we all fell in love with these portrayals and plots.