The first 15 years of this century can be considered as the renaissance era of the modern Bollywood. Hindi cinema reached its peak back in the 1970’s and early 1980’s followed by an extended lull through the 90’s because of recycled story-lines, underwhelming direction and uninspired - over the top acting. With the dawn of Y2K, Bollywood was injected with new blood and ideology that rejuvenated the industry with fresh narratives and better stylistic approach to movie making.
When the world turned the page on last century, Amitabh Bachchan did the same on his cinematic portfolio. The pretentious young guy roles gave way to his older and more sensible characters. Aamir Khan revolutionized the art of acting in early 2000’s and brought the intensity of Daniel Day Lewis’ method acting to the streets of Bollywood. Shah Rukh Khan also reached the peak of his super stardom during the same era. That being said, I call this era ‘The Post Farhan Akhtar’ era of Bollywood. The movies during this period slowly started to embrace the youth culture in India and the movies became more informed and smart. This doesn’t mean that Bollywood had no good movies before 2000 or every movie after 2000 was great. There has been a fair share of ‘horrible to WTF’ big screen moments since 2000. Trust me, I discuss them in depth! I will talk about the newer actors and their impact on Bollywood as we move along.
I went through every movie from every year (almost) between 2000 & 2015 and ranked them based on my memory of the past, intensive internet research and the public perception. The article will be controversial and act as a great starting point or reference for several Bollywood debates and hot takes in the future. The graded system incorporated for the article was based on tier system. All the movies were segregated into their respective tier and a certain score was awarded to each. The highest cumulative score for a certain year took the top billing while the vice versa took a nose dive into the deeper end of the ocean.
NO. 16: YEAR 2002
Best Movie of the Year: Devdas (This was the best movie of 2002? Really?!)
Worst Movie of the Year: Jaani Dushman: Ek Anokhi Kahani( More like, one WTF kahani)
Breakout Star: Vivek Oberoi (Company & Saathiya)- He was suppose to be the “future” / Sunidhi Chauhan - Devdas
In the cinematic universe, 2002 was really dark mate. Saathiya was a great rewatchable movie but it was the remake of Tamil blockbuster - Alaipayuthey. Devdas was utter overacting by Shah Rukh Khan. The only thing the movie established was the fact that Shah Rukh Khan has never been drunk before and has no idea on how alcoholics actually act in real life. Sneaky shout out to Dhotis in a big spot.
16 December was released in 2002, the movie was so bad that it was good. 16 December without a doubt has the nuttiest bollywood plot-line of all time. Spy action thrlller are three of my favorite words and the movie had them all. The end of the movie has Milind Suman and Danny Denzongpa ( Is he the sexiest 60+ year old Indian dude? embrace the debate) decoding a voice enabled nuclear bomb in 2001!
Tid-Bit: Shah Rukh and Salman were seen together for the last time in Hum Tumhare Hai Sanam besides special appearances in future movies.
NO. 15: YEAR 2000
Best Movie of the Year: Mohabbatein (Uday Chopra is the gift that keeps giving).
Worst Movie of the Year: Tera Jadoo Chal Gaya/ Dhaai Akshar Prem Ke (Can’t decide which one was worse. Abhishek Bachchan was on a bender!).
Breakout Star: Hrithik Roshan and his dancing from Kaho Naa Pyaar Hai.
The millennium was not off to a great start. The hangover of 1990’s was not flushed off the system yet. Kaho Naa Pyar Hai evolved the art of actors committing to the idea of dancing in movies. Abhishek Bachchan and Kareena Kapoor debuted in Refugee. Sadly, Bachchan Jr never recovered from the aftermath of his acting chops in Refugee. Hera Pheri did bring the idea of story driven comedy to the forefront. Akhshay Kumar lit up the the screen with laughs beside comedy cult man Paresh Rawal. Real life troublemaker Sanjay Dutt’s Kurukshetra was one of the last action-drama with the vibes from past century. Yes! Mela was released in the year 2000 and Aamir khan still has sleepless nights from his decision to make it and sing - ‘Y2K zamana aa gaya’. Everyone who is reading this and screaming that ‘Hey Ram’ was better than all these movies in 2000, please calm your titties.
Tid-Bit: Released in 2000, Bichhoo starring Bobby Deol and Rani Mukerji is a wikipedia must read. One of the great ‘you kidding me bro’ story-lines of all time.
NO. 14: YEAR 2015
Best Movie of the Year: Detective Byomkesh Bakshi.
Worst Movie of the Year: Prem Ratan Dhan Payo (Sooraj Barjatiya’s mind works like some teenage girl who watches Hum Saath Saath Hai on repeat).
Breakout Star: Meghna Gulzar - Director (Talvar).
2015 was the year of above average movies sprinkled over a full platter of bad movies. For every Piku we had a Katti Batti and for every Bajirao Mastani we got a Dilwale. Salman Khan reunited with Sooraj Barjatiya to make a movie where there is a prince, a princess and a guy who works as an actor and looks just like the prince. At the same time, this exact lookalike is in love with the princess and then crazier things happen. Wow.
Have you ever been really deep in thought? have you ever been dazed and sleepless for days? have you ever been on a drug bender? if any or all of them is true then you will know what it takes to come up with the script of Roy (starring Jacqueline Fernandez, Arjun Rampal and Ranbir Kapoor).
Tid-Bit: Badlapur proved how good and underrated Varun Dhawan is.
NO. 13: YEAR 2003
Best Movie of the Year: Munna Bhai M.B.B.S
Worst Movie of the Year: Can’t decide between Chura Liya Hai Tumne and Main Prem ki Diwani Hoon.
Breakout Star: Priyanka Chopra - Andaaz.
I remember watching Kal Ho Naa Ho with my mother and sobbing like a baby. I was barely not a baby at that time too. The Preity Zinta glasses from the movie were all the rage back then. Koi…Mil Gaya was the highest grossing movie of the year which rejuvenated Hrithik Roshan’s dwindling acting career because of movies like Aap Mujhe Achche lagne lage, Mujhse Dosti Koroge!, Main Prem ki Diwani Hoon. 15 years later, Koi… Mil Gaya has not aged well as a movie and I can barely sit through fifteen minutes of it but Hrithik’s role was demanding and he delivered. Hungama was a great low budget comedy with Paresh Rawal absolutely killing it.
Pantaloons produced Chura Liya Hai Tumne which saw the debut of Zayed Khan and Esha Deol. Good thing that they decided to stick with apparel industry after this shitstorm. Zayed Khan was my dark horse for future super-stardom but that didn’t happen!
Tere Naam was Salman Khan’s welcome to ‘Bhaidom’. It was the inaugural testament in the church of Salman Bhai. The impact of Salman’s Tere Naam hairstyle in Indian pop culture is undeniable and the story of India in early 2000’s will be incomplete without it.
Tid-Bit: Jhankar Beats had the best songs and Shahid Kapoor was as overrated back then as he is now.
NO. 12: YEAR 2014
Best Movie of the Year: Queen.
Worst Movie of the Year: Action Jackson - Ajay Devgn playing a double role in a mind boggling and intertwined cinematic brain fart with music by Himesh Reshammiya.
Breakout Star: Kriti Sanon - This is one big article to show my infatuation with Kriti Sanon!
2014 had a bunch of average to good movies but none were transcendent. PK delivered as another informed and philosophically grounded movie from Rajkumar Hirani. If people need a reminder, watch Aamir’s performance to reaffirm how good he has been this century! Haider was Vishal Bharadwaj’s version of Hamlet and it lingered in the space of good to great.
2 States successfully made the most Bollywood movie of all time starring people named Kapoor and Bhatt. Salman Khan gave us Kick because ‘Bhai’ and Shah Rukh made Happy New Year…..why?! Shout out to Akshay Kumar for remaking A.R. Murugadoss’s extremely entertaining Thuppakki into a Bollywood blockbuster (Holiday).
Tid-Bit: Youngistaan starring Jackie Bhagnani made it to the Oscars nominations. Thank you, Rahul Gandhi.
NO. 11: YEAR 2001
Best Movie of the Year: Dil Chahta Hai - Majestueux (Majestic).
Worst Movie of the Year: Yaadein/ One 2 Ka 4 - That is some Level A doozy.
Breakout Star: Farhan Akhtar - Inject more Farhan Akhtar into my veins.
I have called Dil Chahta Hai the most influential movie in Bollywood since Sholay and that is not a hyperbole. It changed the landscape of the industry and inspired way too many people for it to not be recognized as the Tendulkar of Bollywood movies.
If we only took three best movies from every year then 2001 would be tough to beat with Dil Chahta Hai, Lagaan and Gadar: Ek Prem Katha leading off while Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham starts from the bench. Within a span of two months, Aamir Khan starred as the lead in Dil Chahta Hai and Lagaan. That was the greatest heat check by any actor ever. The timing of the movie aligned perfectly with the resurgent Indian Cricket Team coming out of match fixing scandal of the 90’s. I vividly remember the first time I saw Lakha dive to make the catch - sensationnel (sensational in French).
I appreciate Poo from Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham more and more as years pass, she is Regina George (Mean Girls) with a better character arc. Amitabh Bachchan and Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra’s Aks brought the artsy-indie cinematic vision to mainstream Bollywood. Was Aks ahead of its time?
Tid-Bit: Anil Kapoor’s Nayak should have ended at the interval mark and it would have become the most compelling movie of last decade. Did anyone watch Asoka? I did. SMH.
NO. 10: YEAR 2010
Best Movie of the Year: Band Baaja Baaraat.
Worst Movie of the Year: Kites - Could have been a 15 minute movie and no one would have batted an eye.
Breakout Star: Ranveer Singh - The greatest gift to humanity since salt.
Band Baaja Baaraat was too good of a movie to not win the Filmfare. Ranveer Singh and Anushka Sharma’s chemistry was pure fire. Band Baaja Baaraat is the perfect rewatchable movie. I have watched I hate Luv Stories four times in a theater and I didn’t even like the movie. I pretend to like it just to justify all the money I have spent on it. Rajneeti and Udaan were cool but a bit too long. Ranbir Kapoor getting slapped at the police station while his father is dead and brother in jail will give you the chill every single time.
Aisha is more Jane Austenesque than Jane Austen. There has never been a role more tailor made for Sonam Kapoor than Aisha. She was engaging and endearing. It was less of a film and more of a documentary on pre nuptial India. The greatness of Aisha is that it will age well and stand the test of time.
The Dabangg franchise is still looming large on humanity while Kajol ran laps around every other actor in My Name is Khan.
Every other movie from 2010 worth talking about that I am not going to write about List -
Ishqiya - Vidya Balan as a seductress, sure.
Udaan - What’s wrong with the Ronit Roy character?!
Housefull -one morning I got up and watched the movie with all my roommates, the only good thing about the movie is that I will forever remember that moment. Did I watch Housefull or was it Desi Boyz?
Guzaarish - Hrithik is in love and shit happens. Sanjay Leela Bhansali, Hrithik and Aishwarya Rai. Even thinking about this movie makes me sad.
Badmaash Company and Chance Pe Dance - Shahid Kapoor back at it with the worst movies.
NO. 9: YEAR 2011
Best Movie of the Year: Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara (ZNMD).
Worst Movie of the Year: Thank You - This movie was so bad that it should have a movie about the movie.
Break out Star: Bagwati - Deep cut bro!
I have watched ZNMD more than 100 times and it is beautiful. Every dialogue is coherent and every scene glorious.
Farhan Akhtar came back to the directors chair with Don 2. It was not the greatest action thriller but thoroughly entertaining. Delhi Belly and its tasteful poop jokes were the peak of Imran Khan’s shortlived Bollywood career. Vijay Raaz’s Chawanprash scene is a rewatchable gold.
Ranbir Kapoor portrayed the lonely and tormented life of a Rockstar (He did get drunk on minimal booze and did no drugs!). Imtiaz Ali and his storytelling conjugated with the sense of voyage as an honest character gives his movies a whole new dimension. Ali is one of the cornerstone director of this era.
It is sad that Shah Rukh Khan lost the desire to act in good movies and started concentrating on making mass friendly yet less impactful movies. I am not against making movies which are fun but what will be the impact of Shah Rukh and Salman Khan 50 year from now? This rant was directed towards Ra.One and Bodyguard.
Every other movie from 2011 worth talking about that I am not going to write about list -
Singham - Ajay Devgn makes a good cop. Stop making more reiterations.
Tanu Weds Manu - Kangna Ranaut is phenomenal.
7 Khoon Maaf - Priyanka Chopra - More the merrier.
Desi Boyz - Rishabh? which movie were we watching one Saturday morning? Desi Boyz or Housefull?
Mausam - Man, Shahid Kapoor makes one disaster every year. Pretending to be the‘Top Gun Tom Cruise’ is peak what the actual fuck.
NO. 8: YEAR 2013
Best Movie of the Year: Special 26/ Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani.
Worst Movie of the Year: Himmatwala/ Grand Masti - Tushar Kapoor gives me hope.
Break out Star: None.
Bhaag Milkha Bhaag has its flaws but the cinematography of Binod Pradhan and acting of Farhan Akhtar is breathtaking. Neeraj Pandey’s Special 26 is a story driven, end to end thriller deserving more applause than it did. Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani had a lot of plot holes from Bunny’s college applications to flawed immigration policies but the film delivers a hattrick of love, friendship and the definition of happiness. What is important in life? Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani gives perspective.
Lootera showed the other side of Ranveer Singh’s acting chops with a beautifully subdued Sonakshi Sinha. Amit Trivedi’s music completed the cinematic experience. The movie will make you cry and smile, all at the same time. Lootera is an automatic nomination for cult status.
Every year has that one movie which you can watch at anytime of the day to cheer you up or laugh out loud. Go Goa Gone is that movie! Synthetic Cocaine Zombies, hindi speaking Russians and a bunch of messed up crazy people is comedy magic. Still waiting for that sequel, dude. John Abraham takes on great projects but his acting like my writing sells everything short of their true potential. In 2013, Madras Cafe could have been great with Ranveer Singh but settled for good anyway.
Ram Leela sent Deepika Padukone on a medieval period queen centric spree. Queue up Bajirao Mastani and Padmaavat to get the trifecta.
Every other movie from 2013 worth talking about that I am not going to write about list -
Table No. 21 - Copied from all kinds of bad Hollywood movie I love to watch.
Chennai Express - Rohit Shetty makes another movie. I love Shah Rukh Khan, so I expect more from the actor.
Dhoom 3 - Copy of Christopher Nolan’s Prestige. Somehow didn’t get copied properly.
Krissh 3 - The movies numbering still gives me sleepless nights.
Aashique 2 - To Bradley Cooper - We did it better, mate.
Race 2 - Way too many movies with Numbers in their name!
R… Rajkumar - Shahid Kapoor. I hate to pile on buddy but.. SMH.
NO. 7: YEAR 2009
Best Movie of the Year: 3 Idiots/ Love Aaj Kal.
Worst Movie of the Year: Kambakkht Ishq (Another nominee for ‘It is so bad that it might be good’).
Break out Star: Omi Vaidya (Chatur).
If you are an engineer,3 Idiots will hit you hard. The movie is light hearted with exceptional acting from everyone involved. Above all, the story comes with a lot of wisdom. Boman Irani is Rajkumar Hirani’s Michael Caine and no one is complaining. This movie has aged really well or India has not changed at all. Special shoutout to Sharman Joshi because he deserves it.
Which movie do you remember every actor from? Saif Ali Khan is Love Aaj Kal to me. Saif Ali Khan is the best Khan of Bollywood and I did not hesitate. He is way to cool for all your other Khans. Imitiaz Ali connects two different time period and two opposite ends of the world through his deep seated desire to explore and seek the ultimate freedom of finding intimacy. Love Aaj Kal is the definite romantic movie of this time. In Love Aaj Kal, Deepika Padukone played the role only she could have in 2009.
Whenever Wanted is playing on TV, I will stop whatever I am doing and watch it. This is my favorite movie to watch with my father. He loves it. The movie is right amount of over the top. Salman Khan is the undercover cop in a Mumbai gang and everything else is a celebration of Bhai at his very best. Bollywood Hall of Fame dialogue - “Ek baar jo maine commitment kardi, uske baad toh mai khudki bhi nahi sunta”.
Wake up Sid is the coming of age story India needed. The relationship between Ranbir Kapoor & Supriya Pathak is one of the simplest yet powerful portrayal of a mother and son relationship. Ayan Mukerji is the bossman of the rom-com, existential crisis/ realization of inner self genre. I wonder what Ranbir’s character Sid will be doing now. Will he be an Instagram influencer?
Kaminey had some great acting from Shahid Kapoor and Priyanka Chopra. Vishal Bhardwaj’s music is at par with any Bollywood composition. Dev D was another Anurag Kashyap banger. The movie has the indie feel to the classic Devdas.
Every other movie from 2009 worth talking about that I am not going to write about list -
Paa - Amitabh and Abhishek pulling on all the heart strings.
Kurbaan - Saif + Kareena = *Fire emoji Fire emoji Fire emoji*.
Chandi Chowk to China and 8*10 Tasveer - Added to Kambakkht Ishq, bad year for Seedhe Saadhe Akshay.
Delhi 6 and Blue - Only memorable thing was AR Rehman’s music.
What’s your Rashee? - Taurus. I was in high school and totally made out with this girl in the most awkward teenager way possible.
NO. 6: YEAR 2004
Best Movie of the Year: Swades.
Worst Movie of the Year: Kyun! Ho gaya Na…/ Rudraksh (you know what is common between the two? Sunil Shetty).
Break out star: John Abraham - Even though he debuted in 2003 with Jism. Dhoom was his welcome to the party moment.
Swades is an unbelievably well made movie. Shah Rukh’s portrayal was natural and real. Ashutosh Gowariker came back with Swades after Lagaan, that’s some flex bro. Wish Gowariker had done some more editing to bring down the run time. The film and all the ingrained goodness makes me all kinds of gooey from within.
This was the year of a lot of good movies but not out of the world all timers. Khakee was a cop-terrorists sabotage drama with WWE level heel turns. Aishwarya Rai went full Lita on us. Lakshya was good but overrated.
Main Hoon Naa had cool action sequences. What’s not to like? Shah Rukh caught terrorists driving a car with a Rickshaw. Sushmita Sen is the greatest. I did fancy Amrita Rao when I was 12!
Mujhse Shaadi Korogi is 2004’s ultimate rewatchable. Salman, Akshay Kumar, Priyanka and Amrish Puri hit every comedy note with perfection. Akshay Kumar is that one dick friend everyone has and you can’t live without (shoutout to Keval).
Dhoom has everything. Robbery - check, Bikes and cars - check, Bike chase - check. more robbery - check, bromance - check. The movie was probably inspired by The Fast and The Furious franchise & Point Break and I appreciate every minute of it. John Abraham is the coolest anti hero in the history of Bollywood. Dhoom…Dhoom…Dhoom. Did you sing the background score instead of simply reading it?
If you’re a 90’s kid, you remember Murder and you remember Mallika Sherawat. The story of Indian cinema can not be written without Murder and that means something. Veer Zaara has been forgotten in the shuffle but it was a classic romantic drama. If I am stuck in a sticky situation, get me Rani Mukerji to represent in the court. Yash Chopra came back to direct! Damn son.
Every other movie from 2004 worth talking about that I am not going to write about list -
Yuva - What happened to Vivek Oberoi?
Hum Tum - Peak Rani Mukerji.
Aitraaz - Does the poster have Priyanka Chopra licking Akshay Kumar’s chest hair? Has Nick Jonas seen it?
Ab tak Chappan - Nana Patekar - Good, No nonsense Cop - Great, guns and fake color blood montages - Awesome.
Aan: Men at Work - My father’s favorite movie. Shoutout to Shatrughan Sinha (No relation)
Krishna Cottage - Ekta Kapoor, stick to TV.
NO. 5: YEAR 2005
Best Movie of the Year: Black - Did Amitabh make beanies a thing?
Worst Movie of the Year: Kisna: The Warrior Poet.
Break out star: Vidya Balan.
Black was a cinematic masterpiece and an award winning machine. Amitabh did the movie for free but won every possible award to make up for it. Bhansali might not be the best director around but he surely knows how to make his movies look beautiful. Rani Mukerji cemented herself as the best actress of the era with her portrayal of a blind and deaf woman.
Parineeta makes me want to live in Darjeeling and Doars. Kolkata from 1960 is where I want to go back to. Saif slowly moved away from the comedy image while establishing himself as a substantial player in Bollywood. His act in Parineeta went a long way in doing the same. India was riding the cricket fandom high and Iqbal benefited from its great timing. The coming of age movie about a deaf and mute boy (played by Shreyas Talpade) aspiring to wear the national team jersey was heartwarming and inspirational. Bunty aur Bubli saw Amitabh and Abhishek together on screen for the first time as the con and the cop. The selling of Taj Mahal was stupid but funny.
Garam Masala has few of the funniest scenes in Bollywood lore. Akshay Kumar, John Abraham and Paresh Rawal ran rampant in this inappropriate comedy. When you look back through the prism of 2019, did the movie age well? probably not but sometimes comedy is not politically correct. Aashiq Banaya Aapne was another of the puberty inducing affair from Emraan Hashmi.
Other notable movies from 2005 -
Paheli - It is still a Paheli to me!
Bluffmaster! - Is this movie underrated? Is Ritesh Deshmukh underrated?
Waqt - As Bollywood as it gets.
Socha Na Tha - Imitiaz Ali’s debut movie has aged better than most.
Dus - I love action thrillers. As bad as Dus was, I enjoy it everytime.
Mangal Pandey - One of the very few mis-steps from Aamir Khan in the early 00’s.
Sarkar - Wish Ram Gopal Verma never remade Godfather. Abhishek playing the role of Al Pacino makes me sad.
NO. 4: YEAR 2008
Best Movie of the Year: A Wednesday!
Worst Movie of the Year: Love Story 2050/ Drona (Protector of cosmic energy on a Horse).
Break out star: Neeraj Pandey - Director (A Wednesday).
Naseeruddin Shah and Anupam Kher in A Wednesday! was as good as De Niro and Al Pacino in Heat. The movie had a fanatic pace and every scene seamlessly led to the next one. The movie got its remake in multiple languages and countries. Ghajini took the story of Christopher Nolan’s Memento and tatted Aamir Khan up. Aamir took the abs game to the next level as a 40+ year old man.
Jaane Tu… Ya Jaane Na touted Imran Khan as the future of Bollywood alongside Ranbir Kapoor but the hope fizzled out soon. Imran Khan is now the biggest one hit wonder of this century. For what it is worth, Jaane Tu is a fun film to play in the back while you are scrolling through Instagram on your phone. Hrithik Roshan played Akbar in Jodha Akbar. He played Akbar better than Akbar himself. Kaho Na Pyar Hai put his career on a fast track, Dhoom 2 brought him up to the upper echelon but Jodha Akbar was his peak, a true demigod. Aishwarya Ria’s career has been a roller coaster. Her highs have been really high while her lows have been abysmal. The role of Jodha and Paro (Devdas) does stand out as parts tailormade for Aishwarya Rai. Her mesmerizing beauty often overshadows her outstanding acting performances.
Priyanka Chopra won every award for her role in Fashion, and rightfully so. Fashion was dark, bold and entrenched in feminist principle. The movie was so good and real that it was a little scary. Race had so many twists and turns that my brain is still recovering from it. I love Saif Ali Khan as proven over and over in this article and this movie is so much fun. Some of the sexual jokes and innuendos definitely did not age well.
Other notable movies from 2008 -
Rock on!! - A feel good story. Could have been better.
Dostana - Priyanka Chopra is a legit superstar.
Bachna Ae Haseeno - Outrageous plot holes.
Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi - Another feel good movie from Shah Rukh Khan.
Kidnap - The movie had so much potential. Aah shame!
1920 - Bollywood needs good horror movies.
NO. 3: YEAR 2007
Best Movie of the Year: Taare Zameen Par.
Worst Movie of the Year: Ram Gopal Verma ki Aag (Way to ruin it dude).
Break out star: Deepika Padukone - We got double the Deepika in Om Shanti Om.
This was the year of movies where you ended up with happy tears in the end. Taare Zameen Par was Aamir Khan’s directorial debut and he did do the most Aamir Khan thing and knock it out of the park. The movie was a long form commentary on Indian schooling system, lack of education and understanding of childhood mental disabilities. It was not a perfect movie but nonetheless a great movie.
Chak De India is the pinnacle of sports movie making in India. Chak de will be the closure in Shah Rukh Khan’s hall of fame reel. The movie was perfectly paced with multiple character developments and ample of rewatchable moments. Things that keep me awake: Komal Chautala was the best player in the team and Kabir Khan did not use her to the maximum potential. Chautala should have played in the midfield instead of inner. The team had a lot of designed wing play but didn’t feel like they had enough speed to execute them. Formulaic underdog sports movie always work.
There is no human who has watched Jab We Met and not liked it. I have not met one and if you have met someone then the person is lying. Om Shanti Om was a whole lot of sattire on Bollywood melodrama. I am all for that.
People often forget the great acting and story telling in Life in a… Metro. Sharman Joshi put forth an absolute banger of a performance along with Kangana Ranaut. Pritam’s music (stolen or not stolen) does add an extra dimension to the city vibe of the movie. Every couple in the movie had the music specific to their relationship and character. Life in a… Metro is an underrated gem.
Other notable movies from 2007-
Namastey London - The renaissance of Akshay Kumar started here. This was apex Himesh!
Bheja Fry - Low Budget goodness with Independent movie vibes.
Shootout at Lokhandwala - You can watch this movie anytime. A gunfight for the ages. It is on Netflix, no excuses.
MP3 - Mera Pehla Pehla Pyar was teenage goals. It is an innocent movie. I haven’t seen it in so long but I do have great memories.
Partner - Govinda, enough said.
NO. 2: YEAR 2012
Best Movie of the Year: Gangs of Wasseypur
Worst Movie of the Year: Kya Super Cool Hai Hum - The movie doesn’t have jokes, it is a joke.
Break out star: Nawazuddin Siddiqui
Holy fuck! what a revolutionary year of Hindi cinema. Gangs of Wasseypur (GOW) is the greatest gangster movie ever made. These days, writing comprises a lot of embroidery but some are not hyperbolic enough. GOW was a violent, terrifying and intense work of art by Anurag Kashyap. The man was in a zone while writing, directing and producing the two part phenomenon. If India sent Gangs of Wasseypur instead of Barfi! for the foreign film nomination at Oscar. The movie would have won the award. Roger Ebert gave it a 4/4. Brad Pitt got so mesmerized after watching Gangs of Wasseypur that he publicly asked Anurag Kashyap to consider him in his next movie. Gangs of Wasseypur should be flaunted as the gold standard of Bollywood everywhere across the world!
I love Kahaani. I love detective thrillers. It is the genre that topples every other genre. Kahaani has no lull moment and every scene builds up to the climax. Vidya Balan gives her all and it shows. India deserves more of the well thought out movies like Kahaani. My grudge with the big Khan powerhouses is that they could make the industry a place with better product but they don’t. CIty of Kolkata and its vibrance add a whole new element to the movie. No other city exudes more character than Kolkata.
Barfi! was shot in Darjeeling and there is no hill station more alluring, appealing and exquisite than the queen of the Hills. Priyanka Chopra and Ranbir’s brilliant acting did make the movie shine brighter. The story showcased that the greatest love stories are often the simplest ones. My roommate (Binayaga with a V and K) did get a poster of Illeana D’Cruz after this movie. The line up of Gangs of Wasseypur 1 - 2, Kahaani and Barfi! should be enough to take 2012 to the apex mountain but these were just the core of the cake. The icings are yet to be discussed.
Vicky Donor was a great comedy with a lot of heart. Ayushman Khurana made a convincing debut as the next door neighbor, rom-com hero. English Vinglish saw the return of Sridevi to the big screen. It will make you laugh, cry and smile.
Talaash indulges in noir thriller genre. The first half of the movie is riveting and gripping. The supernatural aspect of the movie makes it different and brings freshness to Bollywood’s body of work. Oh My God! was the hindi remake of The Man who sued God. Paresh Rawal was impeccable as a helpless man in this satire comedy. It was a smart movie which connects with every human in one way or the other.
Other notable movies from 2012 -
Agneepath - Rishi Kapoor for the win.
Jab Tak Hai Jaan - Yash Chopra’s last project before his death was a emotionally grounded even though it was a bit too long.
Ek Main aur Ek Tu - An underrated rom-com.
Student of the Year - Thank you for Alia Bhatt, sorry for everything else.
Teri Meri Kahaani - Shahid Kapoor is back at it with the trash can.
NO. 1: YEAR 2006
Best Movie of the Year: Rang De Basanti
Worst Movie of the Year: Jaan-E-Maan/ Tom Dick and Harry
Break out star: Kangana Ranaut (Gangster)
Now we are in all time movie year territory. 2006 has more good movies than bad movies! Rang De Basanti is arguably the greatest Hindi cinema of all time. Every actor fits perfectly to their role. The first time I watched the ending of the movie, I cried so much that my parents got scared that I might fall sick. The story brings you in, the characters make you a part of their family. The positivity and righteousness inspires you to do better and find a purpose. This is the most significant coming of age story ever told, I truly believe that.
Lage Raho Munnai Bhai was another socially conscious movie spreading peace and love. Sanjay Dutt plays the role to perfection. The role of Munna Bhai has no casting what ifs. Rajkumar Hirani hits a homerun with the Munna Bhai franchise. Omkara was Vishal Bharadwaj’s take on Shakespeare’s Othello. Vishal Bharadwaj adapted the story, directed it, did the music and the background score. Saif Ali Khan as Langda Tyagi stole the show. Was this Ajay Devgn’s peak?
Khosla Ka Ghosla had a minimal budget compared to all the other movies mentioned but it packed the punch of a mega production. Anupam Kher and Boman Irani did deliver compelling performances but the lead character of the movie was its story. It is a comedy, it is a drama and it has its own thrill. Khosla ka Ghosla is simply brilliant. Chup Chup ke was another smaller movie with heartfelt performances from Kareena and Shahid Kapoor. It is a situational comedy that has aged well. Dhoom 2 had Hrithik Roshan go full Hrithik on all of us. It had robbery, hi tech gadgets, complicated dance moves, foreign destinations and a whole lot of swag. I still believe Dhoom was better than Dhoom 2.
Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna was the final episode of Karan Johar’s relationship based filmography. It tackled the desire to find love beyond marriage and the act of infidelity as a part of the narration of a bigger story of finding true love. The idea can be better understood in today’s world and concept will probably age like fine wine. Farhan Akhtar came up with the modern take on Amitabh Bachchan’s 1978 Don. The finale of the movie is good sh*t. Don’s ending is comparable to the ending of Sixth Sense.
Other notable movies from 2006 -
Gangster - Amazing music.
Vivah - slow but honest to its core.
Pyaar Ke Side Effects - 1st person perspective, Office style story telling was different.
36 China Town - An above average detective movie. Only if they removed the non sense and concentrated on the story.
Krrish - India’s OG superhero. Hrithik Roshan owned the fucking year.
Fanaa - Kajol out acted Aamir Khan.
This article is probably way too long like every other Bollywood movie but I enjoyed the challenge as much as I enjoyed everyone of the way-too-long Aashutosh Gowarikar movie.
THE BEST OF BESTS - 2000 TO 2015
Best Movie - Rang De Basanti
Best Actor - Aamir Khan
Best Actress - Priyanka Chopra
Best Director - Rajkumar Hirani
Best Movie Album - Rang De Basanti/ Life in a…Metro
Best Dialogue - ‘Tension lene ka nahi, sirf dene ka’ - Munna Bhai M.B.B.S
‘Pyar koi toofan nahi hai jo aaye aur duniya badal de, woh toh zindagi ke chote chote lamhon mein hota hai’ - Aisha
Share your favorite movie year or your favorite movies in the comment section below. This is my list not the perfect list. Embrace the debate.