2015 in: Bollywood 

Ever since I’ve been blogging on here, I’ve got tons of requests to do a full fledged Bollywood post. And I don’t know why I haven’t done anything like this, before. Hindi movies are my absolute favourite things in the world. For those of you who aren’t aware what Bollywood is, the Hindi movie Industry is collectively called ‘Bollywood’. I decided to do a review of everything our movies had to offer in 2015. I won’t be delving into the private lives of our celebrities, there’s a reason why they’re called private. We’ll be discussing only on-screen moments). Let’s go. Who needs friends and family when you can go live in a parallel universe every weekend. No really, I’d much rather be in a dark room for 3 hours than talk to people. (Akash creepy level: KRK)

1. ‘Debuts’
Given how besotted and crazed we are by movies, it isn’t a surprise that there are millions of people who set out on their paths to achieve super stardom in Bollywood. Probably this year’s biggest Debut was Sooraj Pancholi’s. Considering his tainted personal life, there was an air of mystery and intimidation surrounding him. Sadly he didn’t live up to expectations and ‘Hero’ tanked at the box office. Special mention to his co-star Athiya Shetty who also made her debut. Darling Athiya has fewer expressions than my goldfish. This year was particularly stellar for TV celebrities who made the switch to bigger pay checks. These included daily soap heart throbs Karan Singh Grover and Gurmeet Choudhary who made debuts with ‘Alone’ and ‘Khamoshiyan’ earlier this year. Karan starred in the erotic thriller ‘Hate Story 3’. While they’ve yet to achieve critical acclaim, their legions of female fans have kept them in the buzz, thanks to their aesthetics. I wish them all the very best, all hail new talent. 

2. ‘Bhaijaan impressed’
Over the past five years or so, we’ve come to expect a certain image of Salman on-screen. He’s always playing the self-righteous good guy roughing up the villains and ripping his shirt open or have Special effects do him the favour. But this year was a little different. Not very different, only a little. I was recommended Bajrangi Bhaijaan by a close friend, who knows how much I’m not a fan of his ‘brand’. So it meant something. I was pleasantly surprised after watching the movie. Yes there was drama, action, unnecessary violence and lots of bruises. But it had a message- an important one. The medley of ‘seeti-bajao’ histrionics along with the delivery of a comminuqué made it one of the most endearing movies of the year. 

How can I have any post without mentioning YouTube? I mean, you guys know me by now. 2015 made our Bollywood celebrities a little more accessible. If they weren’t a part of our living rooms, bedrooms, television screens and our dinner conversations, they’d now be on our laptops and iPads as well. Web-series like ‘A Man’s World’, ‘Bang Baaja Baarat’ and ‘Permanent Roommates’ aired on a weekly basis. What made these webisodes more relatable was the absence of censoring- of cuss words and more importantly of ideas. I’m hoping to see more of these, they’re a clear departure from stereotypical issues. 

4. ‘Femme Fatales’
The common perspective that people share about Bollywood is that it is coordinated song-and-dance and protagonists getting cozy behind a quivering flower. This isn’t 1950, dear Americans. This year was supportive of female artists. My favourite of the lot was Piku, for more than one reason. (Read: Deepika Padukone). It was honest, relatable (no I don’t have constipation) and raw. It was fundamental and brilliant, both at the same time. Kalki Koechlin’s Margherita with a Straw was her best movie, till date. She played a young woman suffering from Cerebral Palsy who after earning a scholarship at NYU, embarks on a journey of self-discovery. Kangana Ranaut starred in the sequel of ‘Tanu weds Manu’ where she played a double role of two women with polar-opposite personalities. Few others included NH-7 and Angry Indian Goddesses, both of which I am to watch. It’s great to see our movies bring the essence of gender equality to the forefront. 

5. ‘Shahid Kapoor’
Now I know I promised no talking about personal lives but this is just such a positive, happy moment I can’t help myself y’all. (Surprise, I have a heart). Shahid Kapoor married the drop-dead gorgeous Mira Rajput in a traditional ceremony in Delhi. Now Mira is no ordinary girl. She’s a graduate from Lady Shri Ram College for Women with a degree in English. She’s not some ditzy blonde who’ll end up being a washed up interior designer star-wife. Sorry, Gauri

6. ‘Bajirao Mastani vs Dilwale’
Ever since Sanjay Bhansali and Rohit Shetty announced the release dates of their respective films, one couldn’t ignore the clash. It was engraved in stone, come December 18th, the King would face the Prince. Sports cars would blow up, melodies would be meted out, millions would be spent on a two-minute song, Priyanka Chopra would steal the show and Varun Dhawan would once again make a fool of himself on-screen. Yes, the stage was set. The target audience for the two films was very distinct, and I honestly don’t think the box office collections of either were affected by the clash. Someone who liked Dilwale would not like Bajirao, and vice versa. I’m personally a ‘Bajirao’ person. Nevertheless, it was one of the highest talking points of the year and both films have made more than some of us will earn our whole lives

So that was my review of Bollywood in 2015. There are so many exciting movies to watch in 2016. There’s Gangajal, Wazir, Airlift… Trailers have been released and I’m drooling already. Comment below what you felt the best Bollywood moment of the year was! Or if I missed something. Please realise that this was a light hearted post and nothing personal against any of the celebrities mentioned. It’s all in good spirit. 
I’ll be back tomorrow with another review. You can check my last review where I put my loner binge-watching television knowledge to good use: https://akashakumar.wordpress.com/2015/12/22/2015-in-television/

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