Make no mistake, Munna Bhai MBBS was a great film back in the day. It was hilarious, it had romance, it had some social commentary and it was a good family flick. But having re-watched the film again, we have had to acknowledge that it hasn't aged well at all.
1. The movie portrays Dr Asthana as the bad guy for trying to protect his daughter from being married to a gunda.
Munna straight-up lies to everyone about being a doctor and his parents want him married off to a real doctor. Just try and walk a bit in Dr Asthana's shoes. Wouldn't you do the same thing?
2. Munna cheats in all his exams, be it the entrance exams or the semesters in medical college and that's shown to be cool.
Now, be honest, would you like to get treated by someone like that?
3. He practically harasses Dr Suman to get Chinki's number, even though the whole marriage thing had fallen apart.
There are layers to this harassment. Men just need to take no for an answer. It's not cute when we keep insisting. This could have gone wrong in a million different ways.
4. When Dr Suman gets him to meet her friend pretending to be Chinki, he behaves like an a**hole because she wore something backless!
You can understand that it's not what he was looking for, god, that shit is shallow and sexist AF.
5. The movie aims to humanise patients but in doing so villainises doctors and our hero violently bullies them.
In a country where doctors routinely get hounded and attacked by patients' families, the portrayal of medical professionals as cruel and cold machines is not only wrong but it also reinforces negative stereotypes.
6. To help Zaheer, Munna arranges an exotic dancer to visit him at the hospital at midnight.
Look, that's what makes him happy, then take him to a bar. There are countless other patients in a hospital, often suffering from serious ailments. A hospital is no place for exotic dancing. Also, you should ask, if Zaheer were a woman, would Munna have arranged for a male exotic dancer?
7. Munna's solution to everything is hugging. He hugs Maqsood, the sweeper and expects all his problems to disappear.
This is what we call performative activism. Hugging the old man achieves nothing. Does it bring a smile to his face? Why don't you go to an actual hospital and try that? That man clearly has been doing it for decades on peanuts for a salary. How does hugging him actually achieve anything? You could work on making his life easier, getting him a better hike, more holidays but no, hug it out to make yourself feel better.
8. While in college, Munna regularly bullies everyone and we are expected to just be happy because doctors are the 'bad guys'.
From calling them names to interrupting during class, Munna does it all. He even goes to a doctor's house to play carrom with his dad. Now, it looks cute, but he technically blackmails the poor man into appearing the exams for him, and later help him cheat.
9. The movie also tries to solve 'suicide' by a song and a dance.
This has definitely not aged well. Teenage suicide is a serious issue in this country and the movie ends up trivialising the matter by chalking it to a failed romance. That's just in poor taste. Also, songs and dances don't really help.
10. Munna causes self harm by jumping off the balcony and smashing himself through glass to make sure he gets what he wants.
I shouldn't have to spell out why that's a very bad idea and what message it gives to the millions of easily influenced fans across the country!
Looking forward to seeing you appreciate me in the comments. BRB...