Can you be fair Filmfare?

Katrina – I don’t care which award function this is. I just have to move my hips.

In the last decade, the number of award functions for honoring shoddy Bollywood movies and catering to star fantasies of holding any inane trophy has reached an alarming crescendo. You flip one channel and there is an award function going on where SRK is doing a gig. Flip again and lo! There he is again. So much that we have stopped caring which award function we are watching. Some actress is moving her hips wildly (dancing) with a hundred sweaty half-naked men around her. Someone is getting a weird looking trophy shaped like a sex toy and is misty eyed. If you sum it up, everyone in the industry gets at least one award each year. Everyone is happy. The supply in unfortunately and alarmingly greater than the deservers.

I don’t have a problem with all the needless awards. It gives the actors a relief from the obtuse films they are doing. It’s a mammoth PR activity for all the Toms, Dicks and Harrys who are organizing them. The nation gets to see stars making fun of each other and achieve nirvana in the process. And we all get the proof of how good an actor Amitabh Bachchan is by seeing his expressionless face every time Rekha appears on the stage. Again and again and again.

But I have a problem with a perticular award which regrettably is also the oldest one. Filmfare.

Back in the 90s when I started getting a beard and getting interested in Bollywood at the same time, Filmfare was the only award functioning in all its glory. All the actors would fall over each other every year to get one trophy. It was considered an achievement. No wonder they were called the Indian Oscars. And it was during the 90s, when the problem started. Suddenly mediocrity was in. Sometimes the nominations were baffling.

Sample this:

And then this:

Vyajanthimala – after she heard that Katrina was nominated for Filmfare award for Best actress.

Do you see the corruption, the decay that has seeped in? I do not have a problem with Ranbir Kapoor winning the award. He deserved it but the nominations were truly WTF! Ajay Devgan, Salman Khan and SRK had no business being in the 2012 list. The movies for which they were nominated were big blockbuster craps and their acting in them was equally garish. Similarly for 1996, I could not understand what Govinda and Salman were doing in the nominations. How could India’s oldest award fall to such apathy? How could Filmfare, which nominated Om Puri for Ardha Satya could possibly nominate Salman Khan for Bodyguard? If this is not playing to the tunes of stardom, then I don’t know what is!

Looking at the nomination list might give you a feeling that most of them are just fillers because nothing better is available. Nothing can be far from the truth. Dhobi Ghat, Yeh Saali Zindagi, Memories in March, Shor in the City, I Am, Shaitan, I Am Kalam, That Girl in Yellow Boots, Saheb Biwi Aur Gangster were the movies which deserved a wider appreciation but were royally mistreated. Some of them were given a few nominations here and there but a majority of them were sidelined.

Being the oldest and the most respected award comes with a responsibility – to promote talent, to promote directors who dare to be different and do not turn into money making machines. Filmfare would have taken up this responsibility. Instead they use “Critics” award category so that the stars could be kept happy. And that is how Dabangg got the best movie award in 2011 instead of Udaan which was given the “Critics” awards. It was like saying – Look! We know Udaan is much superior but sorry we prefer giving awards to movies in which the hero rips off his shirt by expanding his muscles. So, better luck next time! There are numerous examples from the last decade where mediocre and puke-worthy films and performances have been nominated.

Yes, common man votes for these awards. Its 50% people’s choice and 50% Jury’s choice and that is how it has been since the 1950s. But the whole idea of a movie award is to give recognition to the best movies of the year, movies which had some substance in them, movies which were created for the love of the art and not just for churning cash. If the votes coming in each year are not at par and are actually a threat to good cinema, would it not be a good idea to abolish the practice and let only the jury decide?

I stopped watching telecast of Filmfare awards ten years back. I want to see Filmfare Awards honour movies that matter, to recognise performances instead of stars, to recognise art instead of commercial success.

I hope one day I will be able to watch the ceremony without flinching.

[images from 1,2,3]

Vicky Donor – Movie Review

A few days back I posted this on my Facebook wall – “How is one supposed to leave his brain behind while watching a movie? This is one art I have tried to master numerous times and failed miserably.”

Everyone thought I might have seen Housefull 2.

Well, I am glad that I went to see Vicky Donor despite all my apprehensions because I laughed, not because I had paid 200 bucks for the ticket and had no other option. And the feeling was running throughout the crowd sitting with me. Everyone was enjoying the movie as if they were thankful that they were not forcing themselves to laugh. I heard a lot of claps and whistles too which are quite rare nowadays.

The movie tells the story of an unemployed youth Vicky (played by Ayushmann Khurrana) who is chased by doctor Baldev Chaddha (played by Annu Kapoor) who has a fertility clinic and is desperately in need of a super good sperm donor. He accidentally meets Vicky and convinces him to donate his sperms. What happens next and how ironical Vicky’s own life turns out to be is the story.

I have always underlined the fact that the most important actor in a movie is its story. The issues raised in this movie was a serious one. It was about how our society looks down upon sperm donors. How people have misconception about the whole process and what it entails. Even though the topic was a serious one, at no point the movie turns into a documentary. It never misses its funny undertone. Of course there are a few glitches but you won’t get much time to think over them.

There are so many small nuances in a movie which elevates the whole product and this movie is filled with them. The scenes between Vicky’s mother and grandmother are the soul of this movie and extremely hilarious. Annu Kapoor is perfect as Baldev Chaddha and I especially liked the sperm hanging in his car (I am still laughing when I am writing this). Vicky’s love angle played by Yami Gautam brings with her the side-splitting clashes between her Bong family and Vicky’s loud Punjabi family. It’s not only the actors who bring life to the movie but the dialogues too, which set the impeccable mood of the movie.

The movie turns a bit serious in the second half but it doesn’t drag and the climax will touch your heart. Ayushmann and Yami Gautam are consummate performers and are really good, well supported by the rest of the cast.

This was an extremely enjoyable movie for me. And I say this about Bollywood movies as much as you have seen Manmohan Singh open his mouth. Which is not very often. Go and enjoy yourself.

Rating – 4/5

Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu & Dinner table discussions

Who could have thought that Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu will spark off dazzling dinner table debates at home? I saw the movie with mom, dad, sis and Geet (yeah! Polly has been rechristened Geet. It was long overdue). Although the movie was above average, it broke many boundaries around how girls are expected to behave in our society. The movie projected the female protagonist as someone who had 6 past relationships, who had a great capacity for beer, who likes her personal space, is not worried that she is 27 and not married and can talk freely of sex and can rate a guy’s and her own butt.

*spoiler ahead*

I loved the fact that even though the guy acted like a typical guy and took she-is-roaming-with-me-and-introducing-me-to-her-family as she-loves-me, the girl stood her ground and did not buckle under the pressure. She wanted him as a friend and that’s that. They still annul their marriage. And she does not care that he is super rich.

*spoiler ends*

We have seen similar movies before – Salaam Namaste, Mere Brother Ki Dulhan, Kya Kehna, Jab We Met and many others where the female leads are strong. Similarly Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu made the female protagonist much powerful than her male counterpart which is very rare in Bollywood movies. It gave her the right to decide in the end.

Now, before I indulge you with our dinner table debates, I must tell you that dad is quite cool with guys and girls befriending each other and going out for movies and parties. He has never stopped me or my sister from enjoying ourselves, although they are more cautious with sis. They are also comfortable with the whole girlfriend-boyfriend-affair-shaffair scenarios. Of course, dad and mom say things like it’s against our culture and stuff but they hardly believe it themselves. They just have to say it to maintain the Indian-culture façade (the same way you mechanically brush your teeth when you wake up) so that we don’t mistake them to be dangerously liberal.

The whole debate was about Dad having a problem with couples staying together without marriage. Okay, I know this doesn’t go with what happened in the movie but he was commenting about Kareena Kapoor and Saif Ali Khan. He could not understand Bipasha and John also who were together since the Big bang and then separated. He might have a point here but then I reminded him that everyone in question were adults and we do not have any right to question what they do in their personal lives. You know where this is going right?

Dad thinks that we live in a society and we have to live by its rules. Why do you have to live with a guy for 5 years and then jump partners after you get bored with him (he meant – after you had sex with him)? There is nothing sacrosanct in the whole affair.

I told him (in less obvious terms) that maintaining your virginity before marriage does not make the whole affair sacrosanct. That is a bit outdated. Secondly, everyone look out for new partners if things do not work out between couples. You don’t have to turn into a nun after your first breakup. Thirdly, our society is the most nosey and hypocrite society in this world. We are fine with girl infanticide, child labor, rapes, corruption, riots, dowry and so many other evils but we find it very objectionable when two consenting adults (who have the right to choose our Prime Minister) live together. It’s actually none of our business. *mom, sis and Geet nodded vigorously*

And this went on and on. It was funny because although dad saw my point in the end, my parents find it very hard to believe that our society has changed so much. I did not tell them that a lot of people have sex with their partners before they get married. I also did not tell them that Geet and I saw a college going couple kissing each other for 1 ½ hours as we watched Source Code in the theatre. It might be too much for them.

I can understand where he is coming from. He was brought up by a disciplinarian who locked up his daughter in the toilet if he found her talking to a boy. My parents were not very liberal with me and my sis initially. They had their apprehensions. Giving their son certain freedom might lead to their daughter asking something similar. But they loosened up and thankfully so. They still raise their eyebrows at sis at times, but she is a maverick. And I am outside their radar ever since I married Geet.

Frankly speaking, I myself would not have been very comfortable about a live-in but that certainly does not mean that I would pass judgment on anyone choosing it. It is also important to understand that movies like Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu explore just one end of the spectrum. India is too diverse in its thoughts and opinions that accepting what happened in the movie as a norm would be foolish. Also, we have to understand that only a small percentage of our generation (especially urban) has moved ahead and understood that the nose is to smell the roses and not to poke in someone’s affairs. The rest of the present generation and a majority of the older one is tied to its belief system. They live in a matrix of society, wired into its complicated circuit.

But yes, whether we like it or not, there is a change and it’s happening right under our nose.

Rockstar Review

After raising my expectations to the tip of Qutab Minar, I finally plunked myself in a smelly multiplex to watch Rockstar. I don’t know if it was the multiplex or someone’s shoe but I desperately wanted the oxygen masks to drop from the ceiling of the hall. Finally, the attendants had to spray the nauseating jasmine room freshener to make everyone breath properly.

“Deja Vu”, I said after the movie finished, remembering something similar which happened when I watched Satya a year after its release. I had such high expectations from Satya that I found it very average and couldn’t understand what the hu-ha was all about.

Rockstar fared a little better. I liked it in parts but had major problems otherwise.

*Few spoilers ahead*

Lets start with the female lead Nargis. She makes Katrina Kaif look like Meryl Streep. Somehow, her expressions never reached her eyes. Even though she was capable of making a total of like 3 expressions, her eyes remained blissfully ignorant of the awful splutter of emotions on her face. Her best scene was when she was in a coma.

I found the screenplay shoddy at a few places. Imtiaz Ali wanted to show the relationship between the lead pair but he did that at the expense of mutilating the rest of the cast. So many threads which could have made the story more rich and the characters more believable were snipped off to show the lead pair taking a thousand bike rides. Jordan’s family was one-dimensional and hardly got 30 seconds of screen time. Shammi Kapoor’s role could have been more. Much more. Jordan’s introduction scene to Heer’s mother was snipped so badly that I thought someone fast forwarded the movie. The relationship between Jordan and the female reporter was terribly castrated and vague. Heer’s husband’s frustration was annoyingly underplayed.

The second half sagged like an old man’s skin for quite a while. Somehow, I was tired of seeing the couple going to dance bars and prostitutes and strip clubs. And why did they have to do it twice? Whatever happened to bungee jumping and paragliding as adventures instead of saying hello to a guy pissing on a wall?

Coming to the positives, I liked the story. I liked the fact that there was a story. Somehow, the boy taking the girl out before her wedding so that she could have some fun before the mundane married life takes over, looked clichéd as we have already seen that in “Mere Brother ki Dulhan”, but the Kashmir backdrop made it a treat to watch. Cinematography was great. Ranbir did really well. He moved from one end of his character’s graph to another with smoothness. It was his movie all the way. The songs were a nice mix. Somehow, I couldn’t understand a few of them but it’s Ok considering the fact that A.R.Rehman gave the music. It will grow on me, I am sure.

Overall not bad at all, considering the horse shit Shahrukh and Salman are throwing at us these days. The movie definitely had its moments. Don’t bother if you liked Bodyguard.

Rating – 3.5/5

The Bisexual Tag

Ever since this tag has hit the blogging circuit, people are going crazy. You can see the samples here, here, here, here, phew!! here and here. Its actually not a “Bisexual” Tag, but I have turned it into one. What’s the harm in exploiting the situation to its fullest? 😉

So, for this tag, I am supposed to turn into a woman and list all the men who might make me drool all over my keyboard. Believe me, this was as simple as Rakhi Sawant getting married to Tom Cruise! Urghhh! Just the thought sends shivers up my spine!

Tom cruise rakhi

Anyways, so when I am supposed to undergo the blasphemous transformation(in my mind, that is), why not list all the women and men in the world whom I find absolutely good looking? I was supposed to list 5 of them, but I really can’t make such a short list. So here is the long list. Feast on it! 😛

WOMEN

Audrey Hepburn

AUDREY HEPBURN

I first saw her in Roman Holiday and that is when I fell in love with her. She is THE star. She has worked in the biggest blockbusters of her times and had the magic, the aura required for a great actress. Watch Breakfast at Tiffany’s, My Fair Lady and Sabrina and you will know.

Madhuri Dixit

Madhuri Dixit

I don’t remember any other actress who had been so popular and respected in the  1990s and this decade as her. She is what I call an Electric Beauty. The smile, the “ada”, the dance…I went completely bonkers when I saw Devdas. I saw the movie thrice in the theatre just for her. Just to see her dance to “Maar Daala” and “Kaahe Chede”. Uff!!! Maar Daala!

Julia Roberts

Julia Roberts

My Best Friend’s wedding has been an all time favorite followed by Pretty Woman and Erin Brokovich. Julia has this carefree attitude which makes her beautiful. She has this dazzling smile and a very cute throaty laughter.

Aishwarya Rai

Aishwarya Rai

Aishwarya Rai is undoubtedly the most beautiful Indian Actress ever. Whatever people say about her acting skills, I have always felt that she is pretty good. She has definitely improved. I also don’t understand what’s plastic about her. She comes across as a very genuine person.

Penelope Cruz

Penelope Cruz

The Sultry beauty. I haven’t seen much of her movies except Vanilla Sky, Gothika and Vicky Cristina Barcelona. She was particularly good in the last one for which she picked the Oscar this year.

Madhubala

madhubala

The Eternal beauty of the Black and White era. Here is an interesting fact about her from Wiki : In the early 1950s as Madhubala became one of the most sought-after actresses in India, she also attracted interest from Hollywood. She appeared in many American magazines such asTheatre Arts. In their August 1952 issue, Madhubala was featured in an extensive article with a full page photo. The piece was entitled: The Biggest Star in the World (And She’s Not in Beverly Hills). It presented the actress as a mysterious and ethereal woman of mythical beauty with a legion of fans.

Meryl Streep

Meryl Streep

An Enigmatic beauty. She is one actress who has fully explored a wide spectrum of roles and I specially liked her in Sophie’s Choice, Out of Africa, The Bridges of Madison County and Doubt. From wiki : Streep has received 15 Academy Award nominations and 23 Golden Globe nominations (winning six), more than any other person in film history.

Jennifer Aniston

Jennifer Aniston

She is my favorite F.R.I.E.N.D.S character. She is a woman whom I can define as cute and sexy at the same time. From wiki : When F.R.I.E.N.D.S was aired, her hairstyle at the time, which became known as the “Rachel”, was widely copied.Aniston received a salary of one million dollars per episode for the last two seasons ofFriends, as well as five Emmy nominations. According to the Guinness World Book of Records (2005), Aniston (along with her female costars) became the highest paid TV actress of all time with her $1 million-per-episode paycheck for the tenth season of Friends.

Sarah Jessica Parker

Sarah Jessica Parker

I love her eyes and her voice. She skyrocketed to fame with her role of Carrie Bradshaw in Sex and the City. I saw her for the first time in a movie named The Family Stone( This is one movie which can be definitely made into a Bollywood blockbuster).

Megan Fox

Megan Fox

She looks like a beautiful wax doll and has this amazing figure. 🙂 From wiki : Fox’s breakout role was playing Mikaela Banes, Shia Labeouf‘s character’s love interest in the 2007 blockbuster film Transformers, a role for which Fox won and was nominated for various Teen Choice Awards.

Katrina Kaif

Katrina Kaif

Our Indian competition to the Hollywood babes. 🙂 No matter how bad her acting crying skills are, she is a show stealer. ‘Teri Oor’ was one song which extracted a collective sigh from the male fraternity. Watching her dance in front of the Pyramids of Egypt clad in a saree was too much for us!

Cate Blanchett

Cate Blanchett

She is the Best Actress in Hollywood right now. A beautiful woman and a charming personality.  She rose to fame with Shekhar Kapur’s Elizabeth, followed by great movies like The Aviator, Babel, Notes on a Scandal, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.

MEN

Now comes the difficult part. I had to litrally scratch them out!

Brad Pitt

brad pitt

An extremely extremely handsome man. I started liking him as an actor after Troy and Babel. I think he was extraordinary in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.

Hrithik Roshan

Hrithik Roshan

One of the most handsome Indian Actors, Hrithik’s debut will always be remembered in the history of Indian Cinema. He is the only actor besides Rishi Kapoor who took the Best Actor and the Best Debut trophy in the same year. Jodhaa Akbar could have turned into a disaster if he would not have played the lead.

Enrique Iglesias

Enrique Iglesias

He has the perfectly lean body. Not too muscular, not too pulpy, just perfect. His face has a certain innocence which is quite well exploited in all his songs.  Of all his song videos, I think Rhythm Divine is the best.

Shah Rukh Khan

Shah Rukh Khan

Yeah! I know quite a lot of you don’t like him because of his a-a-a-acting skills but that can’t take away the charisma from the man. I have always believed that 20 years down the line, our generation will be known as the Shah Rukh Era generation, very similar to how we refer to our parent’s generation as the Amitabh Bachchan era generation. Undoubtedly, he has given the biggest blockbusters in the past 20 years and he can do wonders with the right role. Examples : Swades, Chak De India and Dil Se.

Tom Cruise

tom cruise

Another guy with the right mix of personality and good looks. I specially liked him in Top Gun, Rain Man, Mission: Impossible, Jerry Maguire and Minority Report.

Mel Gibson

Mel Gibson

What eyes! And what smile! A fantastic director who gave us movies like Braveheart, The Passion of the Christ and Apocalypto.

Shahid Kapoor

Shahid Kapoor

He is amongst a very few talented actors we have in our industry right now. Jab We Met was definitely his breakthrough movie. I really wish he had won some awards that year. Do you know that he was a background dancer in the song – ‘Kahi aag lage’ in Taal?

Chris Evans

Chris Evans

Chris is best known for his work in the movie Fantastic Four as the Human Torch for which he was also nominated in the Teen Choice Award. I handsome upcoming actor.

Akshay Kumar

Akshay Kumar

Its almost 20 years now and this man has no sign of fatigue. Started as an action hero, he has given some huge hits in the past few years. A very handsome man with a croocked smile. 🙂

Amit Sharma

What!?! Stop laughing!! Haven’t you heard of the phrase – Love thyself!? How can I expect someone else to like me if I don’t like myself? 😛

Thats it folks! Clean up your keyboards now!

The Animation Mania

Anastasia!

That was the name of the girl who opened the door. Of course, Mickey and Donald and Tom and Jerry have always been there, but Anastasia was the one who made me fall in love with Animation movies. She still remains my first love. 🙂

anastasiafinal_fantasy

Then I saw something drastically different. It completely bowled me over. I was surprised beyond imagination that someone can do something like that in an animation movies. The movie was Final Fantasy:The spirits within. Although the movie was a flop, I consider it a classic. *All classics are flop*

I was so fascinated by the world of animation that there was a time when I was on the verge of taking up a 1.5 years animation course. I had the forms. I just had to fill them but then something else happened and I drifted away. The Animation industry had not turned into the huge Goliath which it is now. I was not sure whether it could accommodate me. Its funny how we are asked to take decisions of our life at an age when we don’t have the experience to take them. Anyways…

Over the last few years we have seen a huge boom in the industry which has swelled to $100 billion+ market. Earlier, the only well established animation studio used to be Walt Disney Animation Studio which gave us some masterpieces like The Jungle Book, Beauty and the Beast, The Lion King, Tarzan, Alladin, The Little Mermaid and so many others, but in the past decade there has been a boom in the Animation market.

the jungle bookbeauty and the beastthe lion kingtarzanAladdinThe_Little_Mermaid

There is Dreamworks, which has been busy churning hits one after another. Antz was the first Dreamwork movie I saw. I still think that the huge shoe scene was the best one in the movie. Shrek has been the most successful series of the studio with a total gross of $2 billion+ right now. I believe that “The donkey” has played a huge part in the success. Then there is Madagascar(another big success), Kung Fu Panda, Wallace and Gromit:The Curse of the Were Rabbit, Flushed Away, Bee Movie, Shark Tale and the recently released Monsters vs Aliens(the first movie to be directly created in the 3D format).

antzshrekmadagascarKung Fu Pandawallace and GromitFlushed Awaybee movieshark talemonster vs alien

Pixar is one studio which stands apart from the rest, largely because of the kind of movies they have churned out. Each movie is not just to entertain but it sets a benchmark in animation. And the best part is that the benchmark goes higher and higher with each release. The studio started with Toy Story in 1995 and followed up with incredible movies like A Bug’s Life, Toy Story 2, Monsters, Inc., Finding Nemo, The Incredibles, Cars, Ratatouille, WALL-E and the latest Up. Impressive! Isn’t it? Walt Disney bought Pixar in 2006.

toy storya-bugs-lifeMonster Incfinding nemoThe IncrediblesCarsRatatouilleWall Eup

There are other studios like Blue Sky which gave us Ice Age and Horton hears a Who!, Animal Logic which came up with Happy Feet(and which has produced special effects in the biggest Hollywood blockbusters), Image Movers Digital(again bought by Disney) which gave us The Polar Express, Monster House and Beowulf.

ice-agehorton_hears_a_whoHappy feetThe Polar expressMonster houseBeowulf

Besides all the Big Budget Animation movies, there have been some others which don’t have the “cutting edge” technology, but have been equally mesmerising. Spirited Away(This movie holds the record of the highest grossing movie in Japan), Persepolis(the story of a small girl set during the Iranian Revolution), Corpse Bride and Animatrix(9 short stories set in the fictional world of The Matrix), to name a few. After all, the story matters!

spirited awaypersepoliscorpse_brideAnimatrix

I believe that animation movies are the epitome of Human creativity and imagination. They bring so many things to life and they will always make you smile. You can see fish dancing in water with mermaids, you can see a rat preparing an exiquisite dish in a restaurant, you can see cars talk to each other, you can see people flying on magic carpets, an Ogre falling in love with a princess, you can see the place where all the monsters are kept…the list is endless because human imagination is endless. Its a proof that we have in us to make beautiful things.

Animation Movies are a never ending love for me. I don’t understand people who don’t like them(although I haven’t met any such person). 🙂

What about all of you? Have you seen all the movies I have listed here? Did I miss a very good movie?

And now I leave you with the images from the movie which started it all.

A to Z of Bollywood Movies

When I did the A to Z of movies tag, I was accused of being an “Angrez” because none of the movies which I listed were from Bollywood. Well, I did that deliberately! 😛 I have watched more Bollywood movies than anyone can imagine!! Secondly, I must admit that this is the cruelest tag I have ever come across. Most of the time, I felt like Sophie who was asked to choose between her two children. How could I choose between DDLJ and Dil Chahta hai or between Mirch Masala and Mera Naam Joker? 😦 Here goes the list and for more details on the movies, click the movie name.

A : Abhimaan(1973)

A classic in every sense. For me, its impossible to choose a favourite song from the movie. All of them are masterpieces. Brilliant performances by Amitabh and Jaya Bachchan. I have heard that Jaya Bachchhan studied Lata Mangeshkar very closely for the role. There is one scene in the song “teri bindiya re”, where Bindu enters the party and stares at the couple. You could actually see the pain in her eyes.

In the same league : Anand, Angoor, Aradhana, Anokhi raat, Aandhi, Aakrosh, Alaap, A Wednesday.

B : Bandini(1963)

The best of Bimal Roy. A beautiful original story and amazing performances by Nutan, Ashok Kumar and Dharmendra. And can anyone forget “Mera gora ang laile” and “O re manjhi”? And those of you who don’t know, “Mera gora ang” was the first song penned by Gulzar. 

In the same league : Bawarchi, Black, Bobby, Buddha mil gaya.

C : Chupke Chupke(1975)

One of the best comedies India has ever produced. The forte of the movie was its simplicity. There is so much one can write about this movie. The songs, the performances and the beautiful story. Remember that Keshto Mukharjee scene? Or the way Dharmendra says “Jijaji”? And the “T-O” to hota hai to “G-O” gu kyun nahi hota scene? Or the title song and “ab ke baras saawan main”? A lovely evergreen movie. 

In the same league : Chameli ki shadiChoti Choti Baatain, Chashme buddoor, Chak De India.

D : Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge(1995)

This alphabet was quite tough as there are many noteworthy movies starting with this one, but then the heart won over the head. 🙂 I don’t remember the number of times I have seen this one. What I really liked about the story was that although Raj and Simram never said anything to each other when they part ways after the Euro tour, still the guy had the courage and conviction to come after her to India. Pyar ho to aisa! A movie which never fails to warm my heart.

In the same league : Damini, Deewar, Devdas, Dil Chahta Hai, Dil Se, Don, Do beegha zameen.

E : Ek Duje Ke Liye(1981)

When Raj kapoor saw the movie, he told the Director, K. Balachander that the end left him disturbed. The director told him that if this is the case then he has achieved his goal. The movie had a kind of innocence and yes, it was disturbing. While watching the movie you want everything to fall in place at the end but the climax leaves you in a state of rude shock. And the songs were just perfect. All of them.

In the same league : Eshwar.

F : Fiza(2000)

The movie flopped but I consider it a well made movie. There were some very touching scenes in the movie like the one just before the interval where Fiza meets her brother and the climax. Great songs, a good script and some heart warming performances by the lead actors. 

G : Garam Hawa(1973)

One of the most sensitive movies made on the plight and dilemma of the Muslims left in India after the partition. The movie gave Balraj Sahni his last major role in a Hindi Movie and started the career of Farooq Shaikh. 

In the same league : Ghayal, Guddi, Godmother, Guide.

H : Hum aapke hain kaun(2004)

Recently I saw the movie again with a group of friends and enjoyed it. I still can’t get over Madhuri walking down  the stairs in that purple saree. 🙂 It was a historical movie for Indian cinema and the kind of records it set are unmatched. There were stories about people travelling long distances and watching it hundred of times! The Euphoria was unbelievable.

A close second : Hum dil de chuke sanam, Hum hain Raahi Pyar ke, Hum Tum, Hum Dono.

I : Ittefaq(1969)

One of the greatest thriller ever produced by Indian cinema. It was a movie ahead of its time and was a sharp deviation from what Yash Chopra normally directed. Rajesh Khanna was seen in a role very different from what people were used to. Making a movie without songs was also something unheard of back then. If you haven’t watched it yet, please do. 

In the same league : Iqbal, Ijaazat.

J : Jaane bhi do yaaro(1983)

The unparalleled dark satire. If someone asks me about my faintest childhood memories of watching a movie, then its watching this movie in a theatre with my parents. There are so many scenes which I will count as my favourites, but the best one was the Mahabharat scene at the end. 

In the same league : Jaane tu ya jaane na, Jab we met, Jis desh main ganga behti hai, Jewel theif, Jodha Akbar, Julie, Junoon, Jo Jeeta wohi Sikandar.

K : Khoobsurat(1980)

I don’t think that anyone except Rekha could have done that role. The forte of the movie was its simplicity, well that was typical Hrishikesh Mukherjee. I love this guy for what he did to Indian cinema. Some of the very few successful Bollywood movie where the Heroine was the Hero.

In the same league : Kaagaz ke phool, Kabhi Kabhi, Kabuliwala, Kalyug, Khamoshi, Khosla ka ghoslaKoshish, Kranti, Kuch Kuch hota hai.

L : Lagaan(2001)

Its a modern day classic. The third Bollywood movie to enter the Oscars and maybe the only movie where the audience completely forgot that they are not watching an actual match. People cheered in exactly the same manner in which they would have cheered in an actual match. THAT is the magic of cinema, that is how the lines between the reel and real gets blurred. 

A close second : Lekin, Lamhe, Lok Parlok.

M : Mirch Masala(1985)

This movie has been an all time favourite. If you haven’t seen it then run and grab it. After watching the movie, what remains with you is the climax. Its so sudden and powerful that you will end up having a bewildered laugh. A brilliant cast which included almost every actor from the parallel cinema of the 80s except Shabana Azmi. A must watch!

In the same league : Maachis, Madhumati, Mr and Mrs Iyer, Maine pyar kiya, Main Zinda Hoon, Majboor, Mammo, Manthan, Maqbool, Makdee, Masoom, Mera Saaya, Mr. India, Mother India, Mera Naam Joker.

N : Naya Daur(1957)

A very socially relevant film of its time and a huge success. And what beautiful songs!!! Did you know that Madhubala was supposed to play the role which finally went to Vyajanthi Mala? This is another movie which had a nail biting climax. This is the second movie after Mughal-E-azam which has been colorized and released again.

In the same league : Naya din nayi raat, Neel Kamal.

O : Omkara(2006)

Surprisingly, the movie was a bigger hit outside India. The colourful language kept the family audiences away. The “Ch” swearword was frequently used(even by Konkana) and was a bit of shocker initially for me too. Thank God I did not see it with my parents. The movie was an interpretation of Othello by director Vishal Bhardwaj. And whenever my mom watched the song “Beedi jalai le”, she goes – “No one but Bipasha could have done this!” 🙂

P : Pyaasa(1957)

What should I say about this movie? Its a masterpiece with evergreen songs! Jane kya tune kahi, Jaane woh kaise log the and Hum aapki aankho main are my absolute favourites. And who can forget “Sar jo tera chakraye”. 🙂

A close second : Padosan, Parichay, Prem Rog, Paying Guest.

Q : Qayamat se Qayamat tak(1988 )

The movie which gave us Aamir Khan. Come to think of it, there are too many Aamir Khan movies in this list! I love the tension which the movie creates. You want things to be all right and start believing that, when the climax just stunnes you. Another well made love story with 100% unadulterated evergreen songs.

R : Rang De Basanti(2006)

This was one of the best movies which came in this decade. Its a movie which made everyone “aware” and “awake” and had a visible influence on the youngsters. For me, its one of the very few movies which made me cry. 🙂 There is a scene where the belongings of Ajay(Madhavan) are brought home and his mother opens the door. Then there is another one where DJ breaks down in front of Su after the protest at India Gate. These two scenes always make me cry without fail. 🙂 I consider it a movie which made me more responsible.

A close second : Raincoat, Ram aur Shyam.

S : Sholay(1975)

In the present, can you even think about a movie which can run on a theatre for 5 years? To say anything about Sholay will be quite inappropriate. Its the best masala movie India had ever produced. And its the only movie which had so many memorable charecters. “Yun Ki” my favourite will be Basanti because hamain zyada bolne wale log bahut pasand hain. 😉

In the same league : Saaransh, Sahib bibi aur ghulam, Seeta aur geeta, Satte pe satta, Shatranj ke khiladiSree 420, Silsila, Sparsh.

T : Taare zameen par(2007)

This movie was a huge gamble. It broke all the norms of a typical bollywood movie and still worked. It gave us a ray of hope that yes, Bollywood has not gone completely bonkers. The movie raised a question mark not only on how we treat special children but how we treat children in general. There is a line in the movie which goes something like this – “Agar race jitne ka itna hi shauk hai to breed race horses dammit! bacche kyun paida karte ho?” Perfect!

A close second : Teesri manzil, Tere ghar ke saamne.

U : Upkaar(1967)

I consider it Manoj “Bharat” Kumar’s best movie. Its a cult classic which highlighted the difference in values of the Indian and western society. And, yes, we still hear “Mere Desh Ki Dharti” on 15 August blaring from the loudspeakers! 

A close second : Umrao Jaan.

V : Veer Zaara(2004)

The eternal love story! I loved this movie and saw it twice on the theatre. Everything from the  songs to the story to the performances was beautiful. I loved Kirron Kher’s and Divya Dutta’s role and also the small cameos by Amitabh Bachchhan and Hema Malini. The best scene was when Saamiya goes to Veer’s village and finds Zaara there, teaching girls. And there is another one where Veer reads the poem in the court. 

A close second : Vaastav, Vidhataa.

W : Waqt(1965)

The third Yash Chopra movie in the list. Its a story of a family separated and reunited by destiny. A multi-starrer and a huge hit of 1965, this movie too had all the typical Bollywood masala. I was very young when I saw this one and the earthquake scene really shook me up! 🙂 And, yes, “Aye meri zohra jabeen” is still played during marriages when the oldies want to dance. 

A close second : Woh saat din.

Y : Yuva(2004)

I could never understand why this movie didn’t work!!! Somehow Mani Ratnam’s movies don’t work in Hindi. “Dil se” was a masterpiece and even “Guru” was great but somehow they were never a big commercial success. Yuva had a very good storyline and some fabulous performances and sometimes I could never understand how movies like “Singh Is King” work and movies like “Yuva” don’t. 😐 

A close second : Yaarana, YalgaarYehi hai Zindagi.

Z : Zubeidaa(2001)

The movie had a very novel fee to it. I loved the way the story unfolded in flashbacks. Rekha’s role was the best in the movie while this is easily Karishma’s best movie of her career. When you watch the movie, you will realise that how a good background score can completely raise a movie to an entirely different level. A must watch.

A close second : Zanjeer.

That’s it!! And if you have not seen the 120 movies I have mentioned above, then you are not a true blue Bollywood movie buff!!! 

Best of Bollywood in 2008

My blog is fast turning into a Movie Blog! One of my new year resolutions will be to write less BC posts. Maybe 1 in two months. Anyways, here I present the list of noteworthy movies of 2008, taking forward the tradition I started last year by providing the readers with the Best of Bollywood in 2007. If you see last year’s list, you will be surprised by the number of low budget movies which have made it to the list this year and the stark variety of movies which Bollywood churned out. 

Also, I must point that this is a very personal list and is not in sync with the box office collection of various movies of 2008. If the movie was a huuuge hit and you don’t find it in the list, then that movie might be in the Average list down below. So, without much ado, here is the (alphabetical) list.

awednesday-2008aamir-1bachna-ae-haseenodasvidaniya1jodha-akbarmaharathimithya2mumbai-meri-jaanrockonoyeluckyluckyoyejaane-tu-ya-jaane-na-wallpaper

A Wednesday

Undoubtedly, the best movie which came out in 2008. The underdog which surprised everyone. Least publicized and without any big stars(just the veterans), this movie somehow restored my faith in the floundering standards which Bollywood displays now and then. A hardhitting script and well defined performances were enough to increase the momentum of the mouth of word publicity and making this movie a hit. I still get goosebumps when I remember the outburst of Nasser’s character in the climax.

Aamir

Another small budget movie which worked because of mouth of word publicity. Its an example of the fact that if a movie is good, it will always work. And, yes, it also underlines the fact that you can apply logic to Bollywood movies. Both Aamir and A Wednesday dealt with the issues of the plight of a common man and that was one more reason for their acceptance. My favourite scene will be the one in which Aamir tells the caller that the is a Muslim and a successful doctor, because he wanted to be and he worked hard for it. 

Bachna ae haseeno

Ranbeer Kapoor returned after the Blue Film – Saawariya. Now, don’t be a pervert. You know what I mean! 😛 Again a no expectation movie which worked because of its sweet and naive storyline, beautiful locations, melodious songs and the starcast. This movie reminded me of Jab We Met. I went to see both of them with an expectation that I might have to walk out by interval but they turned out to be something else. 

Dasvidaniya

Rumoured to be inspired from “The Bucket List”, this movie had another one of Vinay Pathak’s from the heart performance. This guy seems to be completely unstoppable. Vinay is definitely one of the best things that could have happened to Bollywood. 

Jaane Tu..Ya jaane na

Another dazzling debut after a long time(and an equally bad follow up, but lets not go into the murky waters). Imran Khan and his loony gang sucked in all the college going crowd who instantly connected with the movie. This movie will also go down in history for the mass hysteria created by the songs. Even my father knew about “Pappu can’t dance saala” and “Kabhi Kabhi Aditi”, which is a great achievement for Abbas Tyrewala. 

Jodha Akbar

A well deserving superhit of this year. Leaving aside the debates on the historical accuracies, the movie was a visual treat. The movie was made with a lot of detailing and love and it showed. The songs were beautiful and Aishwarya looked like a goddess. Hrithik and Ash share a beautiful chemistry and I found the movie very romantic. The song “Khwaja” was absolutely mesmerising. 

Maharathi

Paresh Rawal’s Marathi play which is playing from the past 21 years finally came to the big screen. The second half was a little slow but that’s all right when you get to see Paresh, Nasseruddin Shah and Boman Irani together. A different movie and a must watch.

Mithya

Don revisited but with an offbeat twist. I enjoyed the movie immensely mainly because of the assembled cast and the excellent portrayal of a small time actor by Ranvir Shorey, who is forced to impersonate an underworld don. Another zero expectation movie which turned into a pleasant surprise. Must watch.

Mumbai Meri Jaan

Based on the Mumbai train blasts and its aftermaths, this was one of the most relevant movies last year which stood out because of the performances by the lead actors. A very courageous debut of  Nishikant Kamat as the director who defied all the rules set by the masala movies and this is easily one of the best movie of 2008. A movie which made the audience stand up at the end and clap.

Oye Lucky Lucky Oye

A funky, popcorn flick with a difference. Abhay Deol is fast emerging as the obvious choice for offbeat movies and such roles do suit him. Dibakar Banerjee is a gifted director. His Khosla Ka Ghosla is a movie I have seen n number of times. And what is it with Paresh Rawal? He is rising like a Phoenix. Its high time that the so called mainstream directors understand his talent and give him roles matching his calibre.

Rock On

Another surprise hit! No one was expecting much from this movie but it caught the fancy of the young generation. The songs were instant hits and Magik was lapped up by the audience. I personally liked Prachi’s and Purab’s performances. A believable script and a complete entertaining package.

Average but Hits

rabghajini1dostanasarkar-raj-wallpapersinghiskingrace

Don’t kill me but I am aware that the movies I am listing below are the biggest hits of 2008, but I found them pretty average partly because of the masala element or stupid scripts or crude performances or some other reasons. This is just my personal opinion.

Rab ne bana di jodi

Negatives – A stupid script, over the top performance by Shahrukh as Raj. Positives – Good initial 30 minutes, Shahrukh as Surinder.

Ghajani

Negatives – A very flawed script, irritating background score. Positives – Asin.

Sarkar Raj

Negatives – Slow pace, wierd camera angles. Positives – Performances.

Dostana

Negatives – John’s butt, stupid script. Positives – Good songs, locations, a few good scenes.

Singh is King

Negatives – Another stupid script, crude comedy. Positives – an okay-ish first half, a few songs.

Race

Negatives – Too many dizzying twists and turns made the movie look like a soap opera. Positives – Songs, locations and some good performances.

p.s. BC means Bollywood Centric. What were you thinking? 😛

p.p.s Lets reduce that two months limit to one. 😛

The A to Z of movies

Another tag!!! 😀 And as interesting as the previous one! Lallopallo and Poonam tagged me to list an alphabetical list of my favorite films, one for each letter of the alphabet. I am doing this tag purely for Hollywood movies because including Bollywood movies here would be like comparing apples and oranges. I might do the tag again separately for Bollywood movies. 😉 If you want to know more about the movies listed below, just click on the movie name. Here goes the list :

A : As good as it gets(1997)

An obsessive-compulsive, misanthrope novelist, his favourite waitress and his gay neighbour take a trip to Baltimore which change their lives. A flawless witty script and equally flawless performances by the lead actors makes it one of the most memorable movies I have seen. Jack Nicholson and Helen Hunt landed up with the Best Actor and Actress Oscars for their performance in this movie. A close second : Annie Hall.

B : Before Sunrise(1995)

One of the most romantic movies I have ever seen. Jesse, a young American, and Céline, a young French woman, meet on a train and decide to get down at Vienna. They spend the rest of the night walking down the streets and knowing each other. Come to think of it, the movie is nothing more than two people walking and talking, but its mesmerising none the less. A close second : Babel.

C : Chocolat(2000)

Vianne, a young mother, arrive in a small French village with her daughter and opens up a chocolaterie. The effect of this new addition to the village on the local people and the scheming, angry Mayor which is further fuelled by the appearance of Gypsies is the story of this excellent movie. The movie was nominated for several awards including 5 Oscars. A close second : Cast away.

D : Driving Miss Daisy(1989)

Winner of 4 Oscars out of the 9 for which it was nominated, Driving Miss Daisy is the story of a a Jewish lady(Miss Daisy) and her Old nigger driver(Hoke). The movie explores the relationship between the two characters amidst the racist and prejudiced background of the American society. Jessica Tandy became the oldest actress to win the Oscar for Best actress at the age of 80 for her portrayal of Miss Daisy. A close second : Dr. Zhivago.

E : Eternal Sunshine of the spotless mind(2004)

One of the very rare Jim Carrey movies which I liked. Emotionally withdrawn Joel and Clementine meet up in a train and strike a relationship. What they don’t realize is that they are former lovers who have fallen apart in their relationship earlier and had their memory erased. A beautifully created movie with some excellent visuals and a great story which won the Academy Award for the Best Original Screenplay. A close second : Erin Brokovich.

F : Fiddler on the Roof(1971)

The movie follows the story of Topol,  a Jewish milkman in the village of Anatevka in Czarist Russia in 1905. As times change, Topol gropes through the fact that his daughters want to get married with the men of their choice and not the one chosen by the matchmakers. The movie had some memorable songs like “Matchmaker”, “Do you love me” and “If I were a rich man”. A brilliant and delightful movie to make you smile. A close second : Forrest Gump & Fargo

G : Gosford Park(2001)

The movie is set in 1932 in an English country house where a group of wealthy Britisher and American gather for a shooting weekend. Its a murder mystery which creates the drama and tension between the characters above the stairs and below(the servants). It was nominated for 7 Oscars including the Best Picture. A close second : Good Will Hunting.

H : Hotel Rwanda(2004)

One of the most powerful and hardhitting movies of our times. It is the story of the hotelier Paul Rusesabagina during the Rwandan Genocide of 1994 in which an estimated 1,000,000 people were killed by extremist militants. Paul saved many people by giving them shelter in a hotel. A must watch. A close second : Harry Potter and the prizoner of Azkaban

I : It’s a wonderful life(1946)

The film takes place in the fictional town of Bedford Falls shortly after World War II where George Bailey, a man who is on the verge of committing suicide on Christmas Eve is saved by his guardian angel, Clarence who is sent to help him in his hour of need. Its a feel good movie and makes you realize that things could have been worse. A close second : Into the wild.

J : Jurassic Park(1993)

Steven Spielberg gave us the thrills of our life with this movie. I still cannot forget the euphoria this movie generated across the globe. A masterpiece in its own right. A close second : Juno.

K : Kramer Vs Kramer(1979)

Dustin Hoffman and Meryl Streep came together in this courtroom drama which tells the tale of a couple getting divorced and the impact it had on their only son. The movie won the Oscar for Best Movie and inspired our very own Akele Hum Akele Tum. 

L : Lost in Translation(2003)

The movie follows the story of an aging actor Bob Harris and Charlotte(who is the wife of a celebrated photographer) who meet in the city of Tokyo. Both of them find a companion in each other when they are struggling with the cultural shock of being in an alien city. A close second : Life is Beautiful.

M : Moonstruck(1987)

I fell in love with Cher when I saw this movie. Absolutely hilarious and romantic, this movie got Cher her well deserved Oscar for the Best actress. I loved the way she says – “Snap out of it!!” and “Where is the ring?”. A movie I can watch a thousand times over. The movie was nominated for 6 Oscars. A close second : My sassy girl

N : Notes on a Scandal(2006)

A chilling performance by Judi Dench as an old History teacher(Barbara) in a school who is drawn towards another new teacher(Sheba) and befriends her. Barbara when realises that Sheba is in love with a student, ends up tormenting and blackmailing her. Great performances by Cate Blanchett and Judi Dench. 

O : Out of Africa(1985)

A 1985 film based loosely on the autobiographical book by Isak Dinesen published in 1937.  The movie depicts the events during 1914–1931 concerning European settlers and the native people in Kenya. The movie went on to receive 28 Movie awards including 7 Oscars. A close second : One Flew over the Cuckoo’s nest.

P : Pan’s Labyrinth(2006)

A 2006 Spanish fantasy film which depicts the story of Ofelia during 1944 Spanish civil war, who meet many strange and magical creatures to complete her tasks given by the Faun to save her pregnant mother. One of the most enchanting fantasy movies I have ever seen. The movie was nominated for 6 Oscars. A must watch. A close second : Pretty Woman.

Q : Queen, The(2006)

The movie encompasses the upheavals in the British Royal family and the public reactions after Princess Diana’s death in the car crash in Paris. It all happened when Tony Blair was just elected and the movie depicts how he convinced the Queen to give in to what the public was demanding and the transformation the Queen went through during the tragedy. 

R : Roman Holiday(1953)

The first Audrey Hepburn movie I saw. She was the epitome of beauty and completely did justice to the princess’s role thus earning the Oscar that year. The rebel princess, a reporter after a sensational news and the comedy which follows. Does that ring a bell? A close second : Rainman.

S : Sophie’s choice(1982)

A 1982 drama film that tells the story of a beautiful Polish immigrant, Sophie, and her tempestuous lover who share a boarding house with a young writer in Brooklyn. The movie is famous for the scene in which Sophie is asked to choose between her two children. The film got Meryl Streep an Oscar for her touching portrayal of Sophie. A close second : Schindler’s List.

T : The Shawshank Redemption(1994)

This movie based on a Stephan King novel follows the story of a young banker named Andy who spends two decades in the Shawshank state prison and his friendship with Red. A great movie by all standards. The movie was nominated for 7 Oscars and heads the IMDB’s Top 250 films. A must watch. A close second : The Silence of the lambs.

U : Unforgiven(1992)

A Western directed by Clint Eastwood which tells the story of  William Munny, an aging and retired gunslinger living in a desolated land with his two children and who takes up a  job years after he had given up killing people and turned to farming. A dark movie that deals with the uglier aspects of violence and the myth of the Old West. The movie was nominated for 9 Oscars out of which it won 4. 

V : Vanilla Sky(2001)

One of the most puzzling moves I have seen in recent times. The ending itself has four interpretations. Despite all that, I liked the plot because for the first one hour, you won’t understand a single thing. Everything starts making sense in the second half when the climax again throws you off track. I love this movie because of the roller coaster ride it provided. A close second : V for Vendetta.

W : When Harry met Sally(1989)

A romantic comedy based on chance encounters between the lead pair and exploring the question “Can men and women ever just be friends?” You can still find people who are obsessed with the film and yes, our own HumTum is based on this movie. And how can anyone forget the “I’ll have what she is having” scene. 

X : X men(2000)

Of all the movies in the X Men series, I think the first one was the best. Its a fight between the good mutants and the bad ones but like all superhero movies, its a visual treat.

Y : Y Tu Mama Tambien(2001)

Its a 2001 Mexican film in Spanish about two teenage boys who take a road trip with a woman in her 20s and what follows. The film has the present day Mexico as its background and has some explicit sexual sequences. It is the closest you can take cinema to reality. 

Z : Zodiac(2006)

A psychological thriller based on the true events associated with a serial killer named Zodiac who was active in Northern California in the 1960s. Zodiac has never been captured.

So, this marks the end of the meme. I would like to tag Priyank, Reema, Smita, Liju and Nikhil to do this tag.

The Chosen One

Before you jump to the conclusion that its a personal(*yawn*) rant post or a post-Matrix burst out or a spiritual healing session, then relax. Its just about apun ka Bollywood. So sit back and enjoy the ride. 🙂 

I have been quite surprised by this recurring phenomenon in Movies. Have you ever noticed that when ever a new pair is introduced in Bollywood, one of them goes ahead and reach the heights of stardom while the other one is lost into oblivion? What decides this tilt of fate cannot be pointed out and this phenomenon happens irrespective of whether the launchpad was a success or a failure. Only one out of the pair is the chosen one.

You haven’t noticed it? Let me give you some examples then.

1. Kajol & Kamal Sada”nah”

Who got Lucky – Kajol. The year was 1992 when Rahul Rawail directed Bekhudi was released. The movie was one big flop but it triggered the movie career of two budding actors. Kajol went ahead to sign Baazigar while we all know what happened to Kamal Sadana. He appeared in a few other movies like Rang before he vanished from the big screen. Kajol in the other hand went ahead and made history in the Indian Cinema. With an exception of a few girls who don’t like any actress, I haven’t come across any Indian who don’t like Kajol. She is one of the very few actresses who have given hits even after getting married. So, Kamal was lucky for Kajol but Kajol ended up being jinxed for the poor guy. 🙂

 

2. Manisha Koirala & Vivek “Miss”ran

Who got Lucky – Manisha. Subhash Ghai’s Magnum Opus Saudagar, introduced two new stars – Manisha and Vivek Mushran. The movie which was adorned with Raj Kumar, Dilip Kumar and some great music(remember ILU ILU? Doesn’t it sound really stupid now? 🙂 ), was a huge blockbuster. After a few years, Vivek ended up with Fruti and Sonpari on the idiot box while Manisha went ahead and did some awesome movies like 1942 A Love Story, Bombay, Akele Hum Akele Tum, Khamoshi, Gupt and Dil se.

 

3. Ajay Devgan & Mad”who?”

Who got lucky – Ajay. Phool aur Kaante, directed by Sandesh Kohli, was released in 1991. It was an instant hit and was noted for its melodious music(remember Dheere Dheere pyar ko?) by Nadeem Shravan. Ajay Devgan went ahead with a movie career which is still going very strong and is filled with numerous awards and honours. His last notable movie this year was Halla Bol. He married Kajol in 1999. Madhoo on the other hand gave one flop after another and was extinguished after some time. Her last two notable roles after the blockbuster launchpad were Roja and Diljale.

 

4. Akshay Khanna & Anjala Z”aver(i)-age”

Who got lucky – Akshay. Himalaya Putra(released in 1997) was the perfect gift from Vinod Khanna to his son, which went terribly bad. The movie, directed by Pankaj Parashar failed at the box office. Akshay’s second movie was Border which was a blockbuster and gave him the well needed respite. After that there was no looking back and Akshay worked in some big blockbusters like Taal, Dil Chahta Hai, Humraaz and Race. Although his career have had a lot many ups and downs, he is considered as the most talented actor in the present lot. Anjala, well, err, I don’t remember her last movie. 😐 Last I remember, her “worth remembering” role was in Pyar Kiya to Darna Kya in which she was seen in a supporting role.

 

5. Karishma Kapoor and Har-“ishhhh”

Who got lucky – Karishma. Karishma Kapoor was introduced along with newcomer Harish in the 1991 movie Prem Qaidi. The movie didn’t work and Karishma was criticized for her looks. She looked repulsive with those disheveled hair and bushy eyebrows which she shed(the eyebrows that is) 5 years later in Raja Hindustani which incidentally moved her in the big league of stars. And what a star! Numerable nominations, awards and huge blockbusters came her way. She was known for her comedy movies with Govinda as well as the offbeat movies like Fiza and Zubeidaa. Harish on the other hand ended up burdened up with a string of flops and was seen as a sidekick in a few Govinda starrers like Aunty No. 1 and Coolie No. 1 before he vanished.

 

6. Salman Khan and “Bhag-gai-stree”(Bhagyashree)

Who got lucky – Salman. Although Maine Pyar Kiya was not Salman’s first movie as an actor. He had acted earlier in Biwi Ho to Aisi(a Rekha and Farooq Shaikh starrer) but MPK was his first movie as a hero. The movie came at a time when love stories were out of fashion and defined the way Hindi movies were made in the next decade. The movie was blessed with evergreen songs which all of us still listen to even after 20 years. I don’t think I need to elaborate on Salman but Bhagyashree, well, her career nosedived like a helicopter out of fuel. She started promoting her husband as a hero and did some insignificant movies with him, carrying the “Himalayan” albatross around her neck and was last seen in some Sari advertisement.

 

7. Hrithik Roshan and A”miss”a

Who got lucky – Hrithik. The launch with every actor dreams of, Rakesh Roshan gave it to his son on a platter. Kaho Na Pyar Hai was the biggest blockbuster of 2000 and introduced Amisha Patel starring opposite to Hrithik. Initially Kareena Kapoor was supposed to play the role and shooting too had started when she was suddenly dropped. Amisha gave another blockbuster(Gadar) next year but her career is on a decline since then. She was last seen in cameo roles in Bhool Bhulaiyaa and Thoda Pyaar Thoda Magic. Hrithik on the other hand, has been churning blockbusters after an initial turbulence which followed his debut. He is the only actor after Rishi Kapoor who won the Filmfare for the Best Actor in his Debut Movie.

I cannot think of any more examples right now, but there must be many more. Of course there are exceptions to this rule. There are pairs which have been successful, like Aamir KhanJuhi Chawla(who were introduced in Qayamat se Qayamat tak) and Rishi KapoorDimple Kapadia(introduced in Bobby) and there are pairs like Anu Agarwal-Rahul Roy(introduced in Ashiqui) in which both the actors failed, but most of the pairs go the “Chosen one” way.

I wonder what will happen to this pair?