Monday, October 25, 2010


My last post about Kaliyug in general and Shashi Kapoor in particular got so many people talking that I realized there is little more to us than Bollywood and cricket. So who am I to question our national character? And why shouldn’t I delve a tad deeper into what keeps us entertained both on and off screen.

So here’s my take on movies, magic and mush….yup I am talking love stories here. The kinds that make you smile to yourself and reach for the popcorn. Or wipe a hurried tear and reach for more popcorn. The funny thing is no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t come up with too many recent blockbusters that relied solely on the power of mush. Heck, new age Bollywood was even making films called I Hate Luv Stories. The mush masala that kept the dream machine humming through the 70s, 80s and 90s are now moving to a different beat. Is it me or is it me? Is my generation that last one to believe in syrupy sweet scripts? Is Gen Y just too kewl to be in love anymore? After all love stories, at least the real ones, can get messy and tear-stained. And very often they do. Is the 20-something generation shying away from love in their search for laughter….hmmmm point to ponder.

Meanwhile I have put together a list of my favourite love stories on screen. This is an entirely subjective list so please feel free to agree or disagree…..

Bollywood Top 10 Love Stories
1.Silsila: Rekha, Amitabh and Jaya make up the ultimate triangle. Cracking chemistry
2.Umrao Jaan: Rekha as the heartbroken courtesan is unforgettable. Great music, great lyrics, great ambience.
3. Kabhie Kabhie: Love and longing across two generations. Amitabh, Shashi and Rakhee sizzle in this classic though the Rishi-Neetu-Naseem triangle is a bit tiresome
4.Wake Up Sid: Now this is new age romance…cool and non-conformist like Ranbir Kapoor’s mismatched socks
5.Doosra Admi: Great love triangle with Rakhee playing the older seductress with élan. A mature take on puppy love
6.Lamhe: Another film that was ahead of its time…it’s perfect Mills & Boon material. And great music too.
7.Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge:This one is so well-beloved that I just had to include it. Who can forget SRK and Kajol in the mustard fields
8.Kuch Kuch Hota Hai: DDLJ meets Sleepless in Seattle, it’s a tear-jerker right through
9.Jab We Met: Great chemistry between Kareena and Shahid…funny and heart warming
10.Mughal-e-Azam: What can I say…has Bollywood ever produced anything to surpass Dilip Kumar caressing Madhubala with a feather…

Hollywood Top 10 Love Stories
1.Casablanca: Humphrey Bogart says ‘Here’s looking at you kid’ and we all reach for our hankies
2.The English Patient: Great book, great film…perfect casting and of course Ralph Fiennes
3.Sleepless in Seattle: Soppy, predictable but never a let down..this Tom Hanks, Meg Ryan classic always tugs at the heart-strings
5.You’ve Got Mail/The Shop Around the Corner: I love both versions…the hate at first sight and love later angle never gets stale
6.Breakfast At Tiffany’s: Holly Golightly and her impossibly naïve take on love and life….purrrfect.
7.Atonement: I don’t much like Keira Knightley but she shines in this one. Though I must say, at the risk of sounding predictable, that the book is better
8.Roman Holiday: Gregory Peck, Audrey Hepburn and a Vespa…this is classic romance.
9.Pretty Woman: Cinderella meets Prince Charming on Sunset Boulevard and it just gets as soppy and sweet as you can imagine
10.Notting Hill: Hugh Grant tells Julia Roberts, ‘We’ll get you cleaned up and back on the streets in a non-prostitute way’…funny, quirky and very watchable

And finally something from Tollygunj….don’t snigger…it’s home to Satyajit Ray…
1.Charulata: Madhabi and opera glasses….brilliant stuff
2.Chokher Bali: Aishwariya, angst and a great story
3.Japanese Wife: A beautiful haiku, certainly Aparna Sen’s best
4.Paroma: A feminist theme with a romantic sub-theme
5.Dadar Kirti: Period piece with good acting, good music and a literary storyline


  1. Dadar Kirti??????????????????????
    Dude....and you left out Mr and Mrs. Iyer?


  2. ok i left out a lot of great here goes...
    hazaron khwaishein aishi
    out of africa
    and yes, Mr and Mrs iyer

  3. Ok so nistula hebbar says "Mush has landed on the food channel in the form of food porn!!!the tears are for truffles!!!" is that true....hmmmmmmmmmmmm whatever will happen to popkaran

  4. A few more to add to your list...choice entirely mine. Some movies, some may not agree, but nevertheless...Yul Brynner and Deborah Kerr in The King and I, Christopher Plummer croons "I must have done something good" to Julie Andrews, the only time he smiles in the movie, The Sound of Music. Bollywood's Dev Anand romances Waheeda Rahman in Guide mouthing dream words, and all the words a woman would want to hear in the song Tere Mere Sapne, Dev Anand once again at his passionate best, strumming Yeh Raat yeh Chandni hain Kahaan while Geeta Bali sways in agony and ecstacy, as much as the palms trees do...the full moon, the sea, Hemant Kumar's voice and SD Burman's melody...and above all, the young Dev magic, ultimately romantic. Also the Amitabh-Jaya romance in Mili...short but intense.

  5. hi mops...totally agree with your choice of blog on most romantic scenes surely....but talking of scenes how can you forget the yeh raat number in khamoshi....its magical! or for that matter the ek ladki bheegi sequence in chalti ka naam gaddi....