Best films of 2006

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Here are my Top 5 films of 2006. Also, checkout the Top 10 films of the year !

1. Omkara :

Starring Ajay Devgan, Saif Ali Khan, Vivek Oberoi and Konkona SenSharma among others, this is a very engrossing adaptation of The Bard’s Othello. Vishal Bhardwaj provides the music, co-writes the dialogues and screenplay and directs, and does each task beautifully.

Set in rustic Uttar Pradesh, this is a tale of local gangleader Omi Shukla, and his two right hand men Keshu Firangi and Langda Tyagi, and how their lives are changed by love and jealousy. The characters are etched beautifully, the screenplay is taut and the direction superb. The entire cast (Kareena plays Omi’s love interest Dolly, and Bipasha adds pizazz as nautanki wali Billo Chamanbahar) gives a superlative performance, but Saif shines the brightest as jealousy-ridden Tyagi. The find of the film is actor Deepak Dobriyal who plays the part of Rajju, Dolly’s fiance.

The film has good songs and background music, and Bharadwaj squeezes in 2 catchy item numbers filmed on Bipasha. Pretty fast-paced in the first half Omkara slows down post-intermission, with less of the action and more of the subtle mind machinations. The film has humor and poignant moments interlaced with the action, and had me mesmerized from beginning to end.

2. Rang de basanti :

RDB is best described as a modern day patriotic parable. This film takes a hard look at patriotism, what it means to us and whether it exists at all. What little there is, is ignited in the heart’s of our protagonists and Rakeysh Mehra’s second directorial venture takes us through this awakening. How it happens is pretty radical, but it makes for interesting cinema, and a lot of thought afterwards.

DJ (Aamir Khan), Sukhi (Joshi), Karan (Siddharth) , Aslam (Kapoor) and Sonia (Soha Ali Khan) are 5 Delhi University graduates, hesitating to get out into the real world. Their directionless lives gravitate towards a common goal when a British film-maker comes into their midst. Then they must do what is good and right, and this war like all others, is not pretty.

This film is happy-go-lucky yet earnest. The director portrays well the helplessness of India’s youth in the face of blatant corruption, and lawlessness. Not only do we hear sleeping patriotism rumbling, we also get to hear it and see it; it gets thrown in our faces. In DJ’s sobs “A hundred like me could die, and it would make no difference . . .”, we weep.

Great acting, and excellent direction help this film garner that 5 star rating.

3. Khosla ka ghosla :

Dibakar Banerjee directs his first film like a pro. Although this film is more of a drama than a comedy (which is what I was expecting), it does lace a serious subject with humor.

Kamal Kishore Khosla (Kher) is the typical mild-mannered, service-class patriarch, with 2 sons and a daughter. Problems beset him when he buys a plot of land and it is usurped by notorious land-grabber Khurana (Boman Irani). Unable to get the land back though legal help (police, NGOs etc.), Khosla’s sons decide to take an alternative approach . . .

Kher as Khosla is superb as always but the real scene stealer is Boman Irani who delivers a great performance playing a nouveau-rich, corrupt, land-shark. Wearing typical, “shiny” clothing, a thick gold chain, and slicked-back hair, Irani exudes kamina-pan. Also of mention are Ranvir Shourie (Bunty), who is the quintessential Delhi boy, and Parvin Dabbas, who underplays his character wonder-fully. Raspy-voiced Tara Sharma does good, as does Vinay Pathak.

KKG stands tall on it’s 3 legs, a strong script, great screenplay, and an out-standing cast. Based on true-life situations (land-grabbing) this film tugs at the heart, because Khosla so eloquently represents the common, middle-class man, helpless in the face of a corrupt system.

4. Kabhi alvida na kehna :

I have never been a fan of Karan Johar, because his films seem unreal and his ultra-chic characters seem to inhabit a world other than my own. KANK is the exception though, and actually gets to the meat of the matter. It deals with marital infidelity and tackles the difficult question : does “happily ever after” actually exist ?
Dev Saran (Khan) is a US soccer star, married to fashion executive Rhea (Zinta). Dev’s mom Kamaljit (Kirron Kher) is a caterer of sorts, who’s catering Rishi and Maya’s wedding. Rishi (Abhishek Bachchan) loves Maya. Maya (Rani Mukerji) isn’t so sure, and post-marriage when she meets Dev, she finds a kindred soul. As their respective married lives deteriorate, Dev and Maya have an affair . . .

This film is a bonafide weepie. While some characters are sketched well (Rishi), it takes imagination to believe the others (Maya, Dev).The actors do fairly well, and Amitabh and Kiron Kher, provide able support.

The story is a bit shaky. One disbelieves the motivation for estrangement but hangs in there, because some moments are magically shot, some dialogues blissfully meaningful and much of the emotion permeates through.

5. Pyar ke side-effects :

A nice, differently told tale. Not what you would not expect of a Mallika Sherawat film – it’s not brash, loud-mouthy or showing excessive cleavage. It’s soft, sweet, with an under-lying love theme.

What it’s about, is avoiding marriage. The topic seems like it’s transposed straight from Hollywood; live-in couples who shake in their boots thinking of impending marriage. For Sid Bose (Rahul Bose) atleast, that’s true. For his girl-friend Trisha (Mallika), who’s proposed to him, it’s either the marriage mandap, or the highway. Sid takes the highway. And regrets it . . .

The characters are interesting and quirky; the hero Sid is a DJ, and has a room-mate Nanoo (Ranvir Shourie) who’s averse to bathing. The heroine Trisha is unconventional – she’s taller than her boyfriend and makes more money than him. Vivek Chaddha (Arora) Trisha’s ex-fiance is very successful, multi-talented and annoyingly nice.

This is a happy-go-lucky film, and breezes by you. It’s funny without being slap-sticky or trying too hard. You don’t have to have a high IQ to understand it. And it’s pleasant – no icky villains, or bloody gore or unnecessary violence. It’s also a lot of fun, and worth hoots of laughter.

Other watchable films of 2006 in no particular order, are :

Jaan-e-man
Bas ek pal
Woh Lamhe
Don
Ahista Ahista
Anthony kaun hai ?
Yun hota to kya hota ?
Krrish
Corporate
Fanaa
Being Cyrus

Also see Worst Films of 2006. See what happened in 2007 – The Top 10 films of 2007 !

Tags : Best films of 2006, Best hindi movies, Good hindi movies, Top 10 movies

This entry was posted in 2006, Best hindi movies, bollywood, recommended, Top 10. Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to Best films of 2006

  1. The Exinator says:

    omkara ranked above rang de is not a thing to be very happy about. omkara is great but doesnt even come close to surpassing the excellence of rang de. bad judgement out there!

  2. AMODINI says:

    Exinator,
    You’re as welcome to your judgement as I’m to my mine. Although I loved RDB, I do think that Omkara deserved the #1 spot, in every way. You can ofcourse disagree.

  3. Anonymous says:

    wtf???? where is munnabhai??

  4. AMODINI says:

    Anon,
    Munnabhai makes the Top 10 (see the complete list here), not the Top 5.

  5. Anonymous says:

    I dont agree. Munnabhai is definitely number one. See how it has influnced the indian politicians…now we have munna bahen aka Mamta Banerjee..Its glorious new days for politics in India..(ty borat)

  6. గిరి says:

    Amodini,
    Here’s something i wrote about hindi movie reviewers. Take a look when you find time.

    Thanks!

  7. AMODINI says:

    Giri,
    I do agree with your post – there are few unbiased reviewers in mainstream journalism.

  8. Anonymous says:

    why do you call it Indian films just say Hindi films

  9. – Jaan-e-man
    – Anthony kaun hai ?
    – Being Cyrus

    Best films of 2006 ?? U got to be kidding. Hope you were drunk when you watched them.

    Agree roughly with your Top 5.

    Nice Blog.

  10. AMODINI says:

    The guy next door,
    Please note that I do not classify Jaan-e-man etc. as the best films of 2006, I say
    (in the post) that they are “watchable”.

  11. Anonymous says:

    looks like you havent seen dor. in my opinion it shud be in top 5. also munnabhai shud be in top 5 instead of kank/pkse. the top 3 are fine.
    thanks.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Come on people, you can disagree without casting aspersions on someone else’s judgment! We are all different, so we are all free to disagree on what we like! Nice list, reviewer!

  13. AMODINI says:

    Anon_Dor,
    Dor makes the Top 10 list not the Top 5. Please read that (a link is on my home page) before you comment.

    Anon_agreeable,
    Thanks for your support! I do like to hear opposing views, but I wish people would be more specific than “wtf”, “are you drunk” etc. That is not a reason – with all due respect, that is just juvenile.

  14. DJ says:

    RDB shoudve been number 1.

Comments are closed.