Brown Like What? Challenging South Asian Representations in Film and Music | Chicago Reader

Brown Like What? Challenging South Asian Representations in Film and Music

British playwright Parv Bancil skewers the mainstream fad for Bollywood, bindis, and other elements of Indian culture in this half-hour video documentary Goodness Ungracious Me! and Goodness Gracious Me! (2002), whose title tweaks a popular BBC sketch-comedy program that makes light of British Asian social cliches. Barely disguising his contempt, Bancil interviews a mix of Asians and Anglos as they joyfully exit a performance of Andrew Lloyd Webber's Bollywood Dreams; the Asians celebrate the show as proof of their assimilation while the Anglos fetishize its exoticism. Also on the program is Brown Like Dat (34 min.), a clunky video documentary by Raeshem Nijhon that examines the emergence of Southeast Asian hip-hop in North America.

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