The Hindi film industry, or as you know it Bollywood, celebrates its 104th anniversary on 3rd May 2017. The industry has come a long way from producing its first film ‘Raja Harishchandra’ in 1913 to have representation in international cinema. With each passing year, the industry is growing in status and creating new records. Starting with the pioneering efforts of Dadasaheb Phalke in ‘Raja Harishchandra’ film to Anurag Kashyap and Yash Chopra, the industry has gone from strength to strength and today arguably stands next to Hollywood in terms of popularity. Needless to say, over the years, Hindi cinema has become an integral part of our lives and as it enters another glorious year, here’s a look at 10 iconic movies that define it:
1. Mother India
Released in 1957, Mother India starring Nargis, Sunil Dutt and Rajendra Kumar became India’s first nomination at the Academy Awards (Oscars). Since then only two other movies have been able to achieve the feat.
A landmark in the history of Hindi cinema, director K. Asif’s Mughal-E-Azam is remembered for many reasons. The most expensive film of its time starring Dilip Kumar, Madhubala and Prithviraj Kapoor took more than 10 years to shoot and was the ‘highest grossing Bollywood film’ back then.
Watch best dialogues here:
To break Mughal-E-Azam’s record, Hindi cinema had to wait for the release of Sholay which not only became the highest grossing film of that time but ran over five years at the theatres. It gave some iconic characters like Gabbar (Amjad Khan), Thakur (Sanjeev Kumar), Jai (Amitabh Bachchan), Veeru (Dharmendra).
4. Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron
A cult classic ‘Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron’ directed by Kundan Shah had a talented cast of Naseeruddin Shah, Om Puri and Pankaj Kapoor among others. A satire on corruption in Indian politics and bureaucracy, the film managed to win over hearts of audiences without any big star.
5. Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge
A new chapter that defined the rules of romance in Hindi cinema, ‘Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge’ or DDLJ became a household name in no time. The film completed 1000 weeks at one of Mumbai’s oldest theatres ‘Maratha Mandir’ and gave Bollywood a new superstar in Shah Rukh Khan.
An epic sports drama that combined sports with entertainment and went on to earn an Academy Award nomination in the Best Foreign Language film category, Lagaan has a special place in the hearts of Indian audiences. ‘Lagaan’ is on Britain’s Channel 4’s list of ’50 films to see before you die.’
Watch the making of Lagaan:
7. Gangs of Wasseypur
The entry of Anurag Kashyap started a new chapter for Bollywood as the filmmaker narrowed the gap between art and commercial cinema. Gangs of Wasseypur was his masterpiece that was received well by the country. A story of revenge, it reminds you of Quentin Tarantino’s classic Kill Bill.
A serious and bold effort that was presented in a lighthearted manner, Queen was a winner in every sense. Starring Kangana Ranaut, it is the finest women-centric movie made in India. The film attempts to break the traditional psyche of how women are perceived in our society and did it with aplomb.
Watch the trailer here:
Starring Amitabh Bachchan and Tappsee Pannu in key roles, Pink was an important movie for the Indian society. A gripping story with some breathtaking performances makes it a must watch for all generations.
Bollywood has been guilty of playing with facts when it comes to biopics but Aamir Khan’s Dangal was an exception. The hard work by actors was converted into some amazing on-screen performances as Dangal went on to become the highest-grossing film of all-time.