Sunday, January 12, 2014

Kitney Aadmi The?

...Not many - you say, when you go to the theatre to watch an off-beat film.  Barfi!, Taare Zameen Par, Talaash, Lagaan, Chak-de India, Bhaag Milkha Bhaag...are a handful names that come to our minds when we think of big banners achieving success with hatke cinema. But most of the other unconventional ones have come and gone with the blink of an eye because they were not hyped as much.  

However, these are those flicks that take Indian cinema from meaningless gaana bajana to portraying life as it is. For every 100-crore flick that makes you think twice about our talent pool, there are hundreds of extraordinary stories that reaffirm our faith in Bollywood. While some big movies manage to take our breath away, quite a few low key ones make us yearn for more like them.  

So one of these winter weekends, curl up in your blanket and watch one of these precious gems from a huge treasure trove that make Hindi cinema what it is:   

Table No. 21

A couple is on a vacation and needs to answer questions or carry certain tasks to earn 21 crores in prize money. Mind you, this entire if-you-lie-you-die game show is not meaningless for it carries a suspense in the end and a strong message at that. I am exceedingly clever when it comes to guessing the mystery – but even I failed to do so!

This Rajeev Khandelwal – Paresh Rawal thriller will keep you at the edge of your seat. Just watch it, won’t you?

Club 60

This Farooque Sheikh-Sarika starrer was released in the December of 2013. Little did we know that we will lose him in the same month. Although I sat to watch it in his memory, the movie’s simplicity made me fall in love with it.

It is a story of an old couple who lose their only son and learn to live life again. In the process they meet several people who help them. These veteran actors (Raghubir Yadav, Tinu Anand, Satish Shah) add humour to this story of love and loss and in subtle ways make you realise that no problem is big enough to make you lose your life over it.

Club 60 is a must watch to learn the art of growing old; to learn the art of living life to the fullest and; to learn the art of surviving your ordeals.

15 Park Avenue

Konkona Sen Sharma and Rahul Bose have acted in some hauntingly beautiful movies that make their mark and stay in our hearts forever. 15 Park Avenue, directed by Aparna Sen and released in 2005, is one such movie. 

The movie is about 27-year old Meethi who is schizophrenic and believes she has a husband and 5 children who live at 15 Park Avenue in Kolkota. Her character is so endearing that you want to take care of her just like her intellectual elder sister (Shabana Azmi) who herself is dealing with her relationship problems. 

The story gently explore the thin line between reality and delusion. It is not about a patient or her journey, the movie is about the world that exists and the one we imagine. Mithi’s world is as real as ours, her truth is as correct as ours. She perceives our world as gibberish; we find her’s insane.
Who is right? – The movie doesn’t answer that. It leaves us thinking and that makes it so extraordinary.


A rural woman loses her husband. Another, from a far off land, has to find her in order to save her own. This story of love, betrayal, friendship, forgiveness and redemption is beautifully directed by Nagesh Kuknoor in the deserts of Rajasthan with Ayesha Takia and Gul Panag as it's leading ladies.

The two songs which remain my all time favourite – Ye Hosla and Imaan ka Asar – form the crux of the story. Watch this movie to learn what courage really means. And how it can turn your life around.


How can a list of films be complete if it doesn’t touch a story that revolves around religion and how extremism and fanaticism can create havoc in someone else’s life.

Dr. Aamir Ali is a doctor who arrives in Bombay from London. Bikers hand him a cell phone and he receives a call informing him that his family is being held hostage. These terrorists give Ali five hours to plant a bomb on a bus, or his family will be executed. They show him that their people are suffering with abject poverty and this act will be beneficial to his community.

Aamir’s gripping and gruesome tale makes you rethink about the ruthless discrimination that we consciously or unconsciously do in our everyday life. It doesn’t scream religion or patriotism like we have seen before. However, the underlying message is much stronger.

Just like all other movies that I have mentioned. They are all five starrers!

This post is a part of the Miss Lovely Activity in association with BlogAdda.

Miss Lovely, an off-beat film directed by Ashim Ahluwalia is set in the lower depths of Bombay’s “C” grade film industry. It follows the devastating story of two brothers who produce sex horror films in the mid – 1980s. A sordid tale of betrayal and doomed love, the film dives into the lower depths of the Bollywood underground, an audacious cinema with baroque cinemascope compositions, lurid art direction, wild background soundtracks, and gut-wrenching melodrama. Miss Lovely is scheduled for commercial release on 17 January 2014. (Blogadda)


  1. I loved all the other movies especially DOR...and now I am waiting for Miss Lovely.
    But I absolutely hated Table No 21

    1. You did? I thought it was really gripping.

  2. Well written...I am yet to watch club 60 but ur post inspires me to watch it now.

    1. I read a blog post about the movie a few days back and got inspired. It's a very simple and sweet tale and can be viewed when you have some free time.

  3. I downloaded Table No 21 eons ago, but haven't watched it yet! Will do it soon now. I have heard a lot about 'Dor' too, but yet to watch it!

    Thank you for the list Nisha. Cal hates watching Hindi movies, maybe with this list I can change his mind!

    1. He hates hindi movies and you took him for Dhoom?? Even the fairly patient Bollywood fan in me could not fathom the courage to go for that one!!
      Aamir and Table no. 21 are quite gripping...start with these. Best of luck!

  4. I watched table no:21 at the edge of my seat...I tried to guess the climax in many ways..and it was a surprise ! I loved that movie... however it dint do as much business as Son of Sardar did, the latter being such a huge bore and an abuse to our senses in every way. I am yet to watch all the other movies in this list. Thanks for the awesome list you have there.

    1. Oh yes. The suspense was totally unexpected and unique. It should have done more business than Dhoom 3!! Hype, banner and star power works more in India than the actual story. However, things are changing a bit and we should support the good movies to encourage the producers.

  5. Unfortunately I have just watched Table no21. It was good and the climax was thrillingly enlightening. Other movies I don't know much about them but 15 Park Avenue seems nice. I will give it a try.
    BTW nice collection of movies :)

    1. Thankyou, Namrata. I saw Table no. 21 one night when my husband was out playing cricket! It was totally random. It is sad that such movies don't make it to the top while some totally nonsensical ones make 100's of crores.

  6. Table no. 21 is just awesome specially for the social message that i conveys.
    Nice post, I must say.

  7. i haven't seen any of these :(


Your sweetness makes my day. Gentle criticism will be taken in the right spirit too :)