10 Indian Movies You Must Watch

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Greetings from India. Iím Dev, and this is my first post in Movieforums. Hereís a short list of some of my favourite Indian movies. Anyone who's interested in Indian films but hasnít watched any can start with the following films:


NAYAK (1966)

A black-and-white classic, it's about a movie star who's traveling on train in a first class compartment. He's interviewed during the trip by a female reporter. In course of the interview, the actor's past life comes to him (and to viewers) through flashback. His past life has been one of struggles and financial troubles. He rose to stardom from scratch, sacrificed theatre for the glamour of cinema, argued with veteran stars over theatrical acting vs. method acting etc. There's a dream sequence in the movie that's very surreal in style and treatment.


YAADEIN (1964)

Worldís first one-actor movie. A man returns from office to discover that his wife and daughter have left him. Heís gripped by remorse, as he feels he has wronged them. The movie depicts his feelings of remorse. The entire movie is in the form of a soliloquy.


ANDAZ (1949)

It's a movie about two guys falling for the same girl. The movie is very modern in style and treatment. However, the ending is a bit disappointing. But still itís worth a watch. Filmed on an expensive movie print, the film dazzles and glows even after all these years. It gives a glimpse of how the Indian urban lifestyle was in the late forties.


KAGAZ KE PHOOL (Paper Flowers -1959)

In this film, a successful movie producer/director loses everything after family problems start affecting his professional life and career. He goes missing for many years until he returns to his own studio as an old man, only to discover that people have forgotten him. He also finds that movie making itself has undergone a drastic change, with producers and directors compromising on artistic merit during film-making.


A WEDNESDAY (2009)

It shows a man going to the rooftop of a high-rise in Mumbai with laptop, phones, wireless comm., portable TV and all. From there, he calls up the police chief of Mumbai (Bombay) and demands the release of three dreaded terrorists. But why he demands their release is a different story altogether.


JODHA AKBAR (2008)

This movie is about the Mughal dynasty, about Emperor Akbar and his wife Jodha Bai. The Mughals who ruled India for about 300 years (before they were overtaken by the British) were descendants of the Mongols. The movie recreates the grandeur of the Mughal era - the lavish costumes, grand palaces, courtyards etc. But the movie is not just a period epic. It's a tale of assimilation between two cultures - authentic Indian culture and rich culture of the Mongol invaders.


MUGHAL-E-AZAM (The Greatest of the Mughals Ė 1960)

This movie is about the love of Mughal prince Jahangir for a court dancer named Anarkali. Jahangir was the father of emperor Shah Jahan who built the famous Taj Mahal. Jahangirís father (Emperor Akbar) disapproved of this relationship, and the movie depicts the clash between father and son set against a historic backdrop of war and political intrigue.


PAANCH (Five)


This movie is about five decadent youths in the city of Mumbai whoíre into drugs, violence and sex. These youths go on committing random acts of crime without any moral scruples. It's a great movie with an existential theme.


ARVIND DESAI KI AJEEB DASTAAN (The Strange Case of Arvind Desai- 1978)

In this movie, a rich businessmanís son (Arvind Desai) starts questioning about issues such as capitalist greed vs communist ideologies. Arvind has long discussions on politics and art with one of his Marxist friends, has an affair with his dadís secretary and sometimes visits a prostitute.


TRIKAAL (1985)

A generational saga, this movie is about a Christian family of Portuguese descent living in Goa (Goa is an Indian state that was ruled by the Portuguese for many years). It shows how a Portuguese family holds on to traditional values while assimilating Indian cultural norms during a period of transition.



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I liked the Apu Trilogy - the first one is the best, the second one, not as good, and the third one is a little better than the second.. I plan on probably watching "Charulata" (The Lonely Wife) in a while.



Greetings from India. Iím Dev, and this is my first post in Movieforums. Hereís a short list of some of my favourite Indian movies. Anyone who's interested in Indian films but hasnít watched any can start with the following films:


NAYAK (1966)

A black-and-white classic, it's about a movie star who's traveling on train in a first class compartment. He's interviewed during the trip by a female reporter. In course of the interview, the actor's past life comes to him (and to viewers) through flashback. His past life has been one of struggles and financial troubles. He rose to stardom from scratch, sacrificed theatre for the glamour of cinema, argued with veteran stars over theatrical acting vs. method acting etc. There's a dream sequence in the movie that's very surreal in style and treatment.


YAADEIN (1964)

Worldís first one-actor movie. A man returns from office to discover that his wife and daughter have left him. Heís gripped by remorse, as he feels he has wronged them. The movie depicts his feelings of remorse. The entire movie is in the form of a soliloquy.


ANDAZ (1949)

It's a movie about two guys falling for the same girl. The movie is very modern in style and treatment. However, the ending is a bit disappointing. But still itís worth a watch. Filmed on an expensive movie print, the film dazzles and glows even after all these years. It gives a glimpse of how the Indian urban lifestyle was in the late forties.


KAGAZ KE PHOOL (Paper Flowers -1959)

In this film, a successful movie producer/director loses everything after family problems start affecting his professional life and career. He goes missing for many years until he returns to his own studio as an old man, only to discover that people have forgotten him. He also finds that movie making itself has undergone a drastic change, with producers and directors compromising on artistic merit during film-making.


A WEDNESDAY (2009)

It shows a man going to the rooftop of a high-rise in Mumbai with laptop, phones, wireless comm., portable TV and all. From there, he calls up the police chief of Mumbai (Bombay) and demands the release of three dreaded terrorists. But why he demands their release is a different story altogether.


JODHA AKBAR (2008)

This movie is about the Mughal dynasty, about Emperor Akbar and his wife Jodha Bai. The Mughals who ruled India for about 300 years (before they were overtaken by the British) were descendants of the Mongols. The movie recreates the grandeur of the Mughal era - the lavish costumes, grand palaces, courtyards etc. But the movie is not just a period epic. It's a tale of assimilation between two cultures - authentic Indian culture and rich culture of the Mongol invaders.


MUGHAL-E-AZAM (The Greatest of the Mughals Ė 1960)

This movie is about the love of Mughal prince Jahangir for a court dancer named Anarkali. Jahangir was the father of emperor Shah Jahan who built the famous Taj Mahal. Jahangirís father (Emperor Akbar) disapproved of this relationship, and the movie depicts the clash between father and son set against a historic backdrop of war and political intrigue.


PAANCH (Five)


This movie is about five decadent youths in the city of Mumbai whoíre into drugs, violence and sex. These youths go on committing random acts of crime without any moral scruples. It's a great movie with an existential theme.


ARVIND DESAI KI AJEEB DASTAAN (The Strange Case of Arvind Desai- 1978)

In this movie, a rich businessmanís son (Arvind Desai) starts questioning about issues such as capitalist greed vs communist ideologies. Arvind has long discussions on politics and art with one of his Marxist friends, has an affair with his dadís secretary and sometimes visits a prostitute.


TRIKAAL (1985)

A generational saga, this movie is about a Christian family of Portuguese descent living in Goa (Goa is an Indian state that was ruled by the Portuguese for many years). It shows how a Portuguese family holds on to traditional values while assimilating Indian cultural norms during a period of transition.
Top 10 Badshah insane South Indian action movies?



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I liked the Apu Trilogy - the first one is the best, the second one, not as good, and the third one is a little better than the second.. I plan on probably watching "Charulata" (The Lonely Wife) in a while.
Right? I can't believe these are all better than Pather Panchali. I loved The Big City too.



would give these a watch someday.



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I like a lot of films on here, dope list.
__________________



I know that for years India has had a very robust and enormous film industry, and the Indian people are huge movie fans.

But it's difficult for us in the west to get access to much of Indian cinema. A quick web search shows that a film like Village Rockstars (2017) --the Indian National "Best Feature Film" award for 2018-- is available on Amazon Prime. Another award winner, Mom, sounds fascinating as well.

I wonder if our Indian friends could recommend some fairly recent Indian films which are generally considered to be of high quality?

~Doc



...I wonder if our Indian friends could recommend some fairly recent Indian films which are generally considered to be of high quality?
@ashdoc help out GulfportDoc



I know that for years India has had a very robust and enormous film industry, and the Indian people are huge movie fans.

But it's difficult for us in the west to get access to much of Indian cinema. A quick web search shows that a film like Village Rockstars (2017) --the Indian National "Best Feature Film" award for 2018-- is available on Amazon Prime. Another award winner, Mom, sounds fascinating as well.

I wonder if our Indian friends could recommend some fairly recent Indian films which are generally considered to be of high quality?

~Doc
Of the recent bunch that I enjoyed ó mostly post 2000.


Romantic
LOOTERA
It's slow but gorgeously shot and well acted. It's adapted from the famous short story 'The Last Leaf' by O. Henry.

Spy Thriller
RAAZI
Based on a true story about a young girl who helped us win a war against Pakistan in the seventies.

Thriller in general
ANDHADHUN
For me, it was the best movie of 2018. If you like Coen Brothers' movies, then you will love this one.

TALVAR
Based on the famous unresolved double murder case that happened here. Directed by the same woman who made Raazi.

A WEDNESDAY
Has been mentioned in the opening post.

JOHNNY GADDAR
An Indie-thriller.

Comedy
DELHI BELLY
A Guy Ritchie-esque dark comedy.

3 IDIOTS
Based on Chetan Bhagat's novel. A nice take on our pressure filled education system.

TAARE ZAMEEN PAR
A senitive film on dyslexia that raised so much awareness regarding the subject in this country.

Gangster
GANGS OF WASSEYPUR 1 & 2
Based on the mafia and politicians of old Bihar and Jharkhand. It spans over three generations. I remember speaking to you about Sacred games. One of the directors of that series co-wrote and directed these movies. Watch them in 2 movie format, and not the eight part series format that's available on Netflix.

SATYA
This is a nineties flick. Probably the best Indian gangster flick, written by the maker of Gangs of Wasseypur. It depicts the nineties Mumbai gangs brilliantly.

Drama
HAZAARO KHWAEISHEIN AISI
It's in English and centered around the Naxal movement.

LIPSTICK UNDER MY BURKHA
Female issue based flick.

NEWTON
Realistic take on elections that happen in deep rural regions, which are still under the Naxal threat.

Horror
TUMBBAD
It's less about jump scares and more about good story telling. It took ten years to make, because the director only wanted to shoot in real rain, which happens for only three months during the monsoon season. Gorgeously shot and the art direction is so detailed.

I have probably missed a few, but this should help you.



Of the recent bunch that I enjoyed ó mostly post 2000.
...
I have probably missed a few, but this should help you.
Well, thanks very much, WM, for taking the time to make all the suggestions! I'll make a list and see which ones are available, either in English, or with English subtitles.

Cheers!

~Doc



We did watch Raazi last night. It's available on Amazon Prime, and has English subtitles.

It's an enjoyable film whose screenplay put me in mind of some of the mystery/melodrama type films made in the U.S. in the 1950s-60s. The gorgeous Alia Bhatt's character, who is intermittently in peril of being discovered as a spy brought Hitchcockian suspense to the epic. Parenthetically she must be very adept at crying, since there had to be 8-10 scenes where she was called upon to do so..

As a historical drama, the 1971 Pakistani-Indian war was a fascinating setting. I often wondered what were the circumstances that provided the basis from which East Pakistan became Bangladesh. That particular point wasn't emphasized, but the Pakistani-Indian war with its espionage and the lead up to it's hostilities was nicely featured. Ali Bhatt's character, Sehmat Khan (a pseudonym), became an Indian decorated hero following their victory. The story is a somewhat fictionalized account from the book, Calling Sehmat by Harinder S. Sikka.

~Doc



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