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 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.
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.
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 shadi, Choti Choti Baatain, Chashme buddoor, Chak De India.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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 ghosla, Koshish, Kranti, Kuch Kuch hota hai.
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.
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.
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.
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!” 🙂
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.
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.
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.
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 khiladi, Sree 420, Silsila, Sparsh.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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, Yalgaar, Yehi hai Zindagi.
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!!!