Dipen Guhawrote on Jul 13 2009 7:43PM
In Bobby. puppy love confronts patriarchal authority. The teen lovers face parental authority's power to summon privileges of class and the support of the state via its restrictive age of consent laws. Raja (Rishi Kapoor), the only son of the wealthy Mr. Nath (Pran) and his wife Sushsma (Sonia Sahni), is sent away to a boarding school because his parents cannot spare the time for child care, and Mrs. Briganza, the governess, cannot discipline him. He returns after graduating from high school, meets and falls in love with Bobby, Mrs. Briganza's granddaughter, and wants to marry her.
Bobby's father, Jack Briganza, has unschooled manners and comes from a plebian "rum-drinking" culture that appals the class-conscious Mr.Nath. He accuses Jack of setting Raja up.The young lovers are seperated and Raja is warned that marrying Bobby before turning twenty-one violates the law. Raja defers his marriage, but when he discovers that his father is arranging his marriage to enhance his own fortune, he elopes with Bobby. Nath suspects Jack Briganza behind it despite the fact that Mrs.Briganza calls the police to trace Raja. The young lovers, speeding down the highway to their freedom, are chased by their fathers, the police, and hoodlums interested in the handsome reward on Raja's head. Raja and Bobby .Raja and Bobby are rescued from the hoodlums by their fathers, but feeling no safety with their families, they jump into the river in a joint suicide bid , Jack and Nath jump in after them, with the result that Jack rescues Raja and Nath rescues Bobby. All is well in the end : a reformed Nath accepts Bobby and Jack Briganza.
Curiously, Bobby's astonishing success was not replicated for almost two decades, when the narrative elements of young love and defiance of parental authority became established genre conventions. The 90s romance films assert the individual's rights against feudal strictures associated with vested familial interests. To this end, the film Bobby is remarkably secular.