The ten most adored Bollywood films
They may or may not be the biggest, best or blockbusters of their time. Nonetheless, some films acquire enduring popularity among faithful fans with their seemingly irresistible content and connection.
Here's how: can watch it repeatedly, can quote the dialogues in one's sleep, know every single character inside out, will stop at nothing to dig miniscule trivia associated with the film, forms unofficial clubs of like-minded enthusiasts that debate and devour the same. Whether it's that unexplained X-factor or pure cinematic fervor, there's no denying these films their overwhelming fan following.
On that note, here's a compilation of ten such adored flicks, in no particular order that movie buffs find innumerable excuses to root for. Hang on though. Considering there, like, a million movies out there, restricting the number to a mere ten is ridiculously tough. And so it's imperative to include an honorary mention of runner-ups like Don, Jaani Dushman, Purana Mandir, Gunda, Kabhi Haan Kabhi Naa, Paatal Bhairavi and Disco Dancer.
Oh yes, this could go on forever. So if you don't find your pick on the list, hit the message board in full force, will ya?
Andaz Apna Apna
Why did Andaz Apna Apna receive a mediocre reception at the box-office is one of the greatest unsolved mysteries of life.
Practically everyone you bump into is a huge fan of this Rajkumar Santoshi-helmed romp starring the two Khans -- Aamir and Salman along with Raveena Tandon, Karisma Kapoor, Paresh Rawal and Shakti Kapoor in probably his career best role.
Despite its low brow production values and nutty storyline, the film relies on pure comic timing and infectious spontaneity of its loony cast to make this one of the most fun films of all times.
Image: A scene from Andaz Apna Apna
Gabbar, Jai, Veeru, Thakur, Basanti, Dhanno, Jailor and more. Not many can boast of these many memorable screen characters as Ramesh Sippy's Sholay.
Nor is any script as quotable and memorized as this one. The coolest thing about Sholay is that you can enjoy it on any medium: visual, audio or paper.
And like good wine, Sippy's love song to western spaghetti classics has aged magnificently with time.
Image: A scene from Sholay
Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron
Satires are always a tricky genre for it's not easy to generate humour out of a stark reality.
Props to Kundan Shah for achieving this so marvelously without dishonoring either in the ever-so-brilliant Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron. This NFDC-financed comedy with a gifted cast like Naseeruddin Shah, Om Puri, Pankaj Kapoor, Ravi Baswani, Satish Kaushik and Satish Shah was never a major BO draw but it sure set the standards of what a perfect spoof ought to be.
Truly, Mahabharata was never this entertaining before or will be ever again.
Image: A scene from Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron
Whether Miss Chamko managed to sell those multitudes of detergent packets, we don't know. What we do is that she is one of the most endearing Hindi film heroines to hit the realm of feel-good cinema.
No wonder both the leading man Farookh Shaikh at his adorable best and his good-for-nothing cronies (played by Ravi Baswani and Rakesh Bedi) fall head-over-heels for her sparkling charms.
Perhaps it's this very relatable and pleasant quality of Sai Paranjape's 1981 rom-com that lends it endless appeal.
Image: A scene from Chasme Buddoor
While on happy-go-lucky movies, Hrishikesh Mukerjee's Golmaal is up there. The master filmmaker's ability to blend bright wit into mundane crisis often resulted in awe-inspiring cinema.
Here too, he employs day-to-day challenges of working class, fun-loving youth, represented by Amol Palekar in a dual role, up against a memorable eccentric, portrayed marvelously by Utpal Dutt -- resulting in rib-tickling comedy.
Too bad it has to share its name with a rather garish, garrulous franchise.
Image: A scene from Golmaal
Several opine that the reason Swades did well only moderately, when it could have attained Lagaan's stature, is because of its 194 minutes running time. That hasn't stopped admirers from dubbing it as one of the most significant films of these times.
Ashutosh Gowarikar's modern-day take on patriotism involves an NRI engineer who comes to India and experiences it at grass-root level resulting in a metamorphosis of ideals and mind-set.
There is much idealism, honesty and dignity in Swades. And a large chunk of it is conveyed through Shah Rukh Khan in one of his more, if not the most, compelling performances.
Image: A scene from Swades
Ram Gopal Varma's exploration of the Mumbai underworld in Satya is considered one of the finest examples of filmmaking of that genre.
Instead of simply concentrating on the graphic side of crime, the drama delves into the psyche and personality of those engaged with the wrong side of law to draw a more authentic picture of the dark underbelly.
Adding to the potency of its hard-hitting content are its rousing technical qualities camerawork, background, editing and a breakthrough performance by Manoj Bajpai.
Image: A scene from Satya
There's something poetic in the unrelenting and brutal ambiance of Vidhu Vinod Chopra's Parinda. And yet it's all so terribly visceral it's hard to stay unmoved.
At a time when pleasing the audience was the norm, Chopra dared to make them uncomfortable even if that meant a seriously gruesome end for two of the film's key characters.
Stark yet stylish, Chopra's iconic take on mafia showcased stars like Anil Kapoor, Jackie Shroff, Madhuri Dixit and Nana Patekar in a refreshingly uninhibited skin.
Image: A scene from Parinda
Dil Chahta Hai
Everyone loves to identify themselves with a character in a movie. Farhan Akhtar's Dil Chahta Hai lets you do that big time with its three distinct characterizations of Akash, Sid and Sameer.
This super trendy coming-of-age comedy/drama about three close friends resonates perfectly with the generation it was targeted at. The highs and lows of friendship and relationships is an eventuality everyone experiences and FA with his crispy narrative and urban humour nailed it just as well.
Not to forget all the cool hairstyles and wardrobe that opened a whole new door for men's fashion.
Image: A scene from Dil Chahta Hai
Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge
Is there any popularity list DDLJ isn't on? It's probably one of the most romantic, most successful, most long-running, most award-winning, most loved films of the last 16 years.
And even after accumulating so much adulation for such an extended time, Aditya Chopra's maiden venture shows no signs of slowing down.
There've been numerous tributes in the form of movies, filmmakers and references but Raj and Simran's grand fairy tale continues to intrigue, impress and inspire.
Image: A scene from Dilwale Dulhamiya Le Jayenge