The Hindi Film Industry popularly known as “Bollywood” is known for churning out roughly about 1000 movies annually.These movies produced usually belong to variety of genres such as action, biopic, romance, tragedy, family drama, comedy, horror so on and so forth. Now, over the years “Romance” has been one genre that has definitely caught the fancy of the Indian audience. It is due to public demand that for decades now a majority of the directors in “Bollywood” have continued to make mushy “romantic” movies. However, there have only been a few movies based on “love” produced in the last two decades or so that can really stand the test of time when watched even today. So, here is presenting a list of “9 Bollywood Romantic Movies” that I truly believe are worth watching.
a. Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge- Aditya Chopra:
“Quintessential Bollywood romance” would be the best way to describe the 1995 Aditya Chopra directed Bollywood Romantic Movie Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge. Produced by Yash Chopra (father of Aditya) who is renowned for having produced and directed some successful romantic films himself, this movie had all the elements which includes melodrama, comedy, a bit of action, and of course lots of romance that the Hindi speaking audiences in India love. Based on a love story between a rich, charming, and flirtatious Indian boy Raj (Shah Rukh Khan) and a typical simple middle class Indian girl Simran (Kajol), this movie is a total delight from start to end. Backed up by brilliant music composed by Jatin-Lalit and fantastic performances especially by the lead pair Shah Rukh and Kajol, this film has over the years become a “Bollywood” cult classic to remember.
b. Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak- Mansoor Khan
“Doom till Doom” is the literal English translation of the 1988 Mansoor Khan directed Bollywood Romantic Movie titled Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak. Produced under Nasir Hussain Films, this “Indian version of Romeo and Juliet” proved to be blockbuster at the box office, and was also the debut film of Aamir Khan, the nephew of producer Hussain. The plot of this movie basically revolves around a love story between a boy Raj (Aamir Khan) and a girl Rashmi (Juhi Chawla) both belonging to families that have been at war with each other for decades. Comprising of some fine music composed by Anand-Milind including the smash hit “Papa Kehte Hain”, this movie is a complete family entertainer consisting of elements such as melodrama, romance, catchy music, and tragedy l. And so, with this movie having won critical acclaim (in the form of a national award) as well as box office success, it can be confidently stated that this is one of the most memorable romantic films to have been produced in Bollywood.
c. Saathiya- Shaad Ali
“The responsibility of being in love” is the theme on which the 2002 Shaad Ali directed Bollywood Romantic Movie Saathiya (an official remake of the Mani Ratnam directed Tamil movie Alaipayuthey) revolves around. Based on a couple Aditya (Vivek Oberoi) and Suhani (Rani Mukherjee) who fall in love and decide to elope because both their families refuse to accept the relationship, this movie basically explores life before and after marriage, an aspect of love rarely explored in Bollywood. Comprising of some soulful music by AR Rahman and some wonderful performances by the cast especially by the lead protagonists this movie not only “entertains” but also emphasizes the fact that “love does come with responsibility attached to it”. More importantly though, Saathiya is a movie that showcases the mechanics of a man and woman relationship in a realistic rather than fantastical manner (a rare feat in Bollywood), making this movie worth watching even today i.e. 16 years after its release.
d. Rangeela- Ram Gopal Varma
“To say or not to say” is a phrase that quite beautifully encapsulates the essence of the 1995 Ram Gopal Varma directed Bollywood Romantic Movie titled Rangeela. It is based on a street smart lovable man called Munna (Aamir Khan) who falls in love with a simple girl next door Milli (Urmila Matondkar). Adding twist to the simple tale of love is the character called Raj Kamal who is in love with Mili, and is played by the ever stylish Jackie Shroff. In addition, it also comprises of some fantastic music (the lifeline of this film) composed by AR Rahman, with songs like “Tanha Tanha” and “Kya Kare Ya Na Kare” being loved by people all around the country. Above all though, the director via the use of music and dance has shown that the timeless emotion of “Love” can overpower rigid societal barriers such as class distinction, and this is what makes the movie not only interesting but extremely “colourful” to watch too.
e. Lootera- Vikramaditya Motwane
“A love saga possessing an old world charm” would be the best way to describe the 2013 Bollywood Romantic Movie Lootera directed by Vikramaditya Motwane. Produced by Phantom Films, this critically acclaimed film was inspired by a short story titled “The Last Leaf” written by O Henry. Revolving around a sensitive love story between a con man Varun Shrivastav/Atmanand Tripathi (Ranveer Singh) and a daughter of a landlord (i.e. Zamindar) Pakhi Roy Chaudhary (Sonakshi Sinha), this movie beautifully captures the importance of “sacrifice” in love. Furthermore, it is also backed up by some “soulful” music composed by the talented Amit Trivedi, as well by brilliant performances by the cast especially Singh as the main lead and Vikrant Massey as his “sidekick” Devdas. Overall, it would be apt to state that this is one of those rare Bollywood romance that actually shows us what it means to fall in love and then happily make a “sacrifice” for it.
f. Mukkabaaz- Anurag Kashyap
“A tale of love set in the world of sports” is the ideal way to describe the 2018 Bollywood Romantic Movie Mukkabaaz directed by a maverick called Anurag Kashyap. Based in a small town in Uttar Pradesh, this film deals with a love story between a boxer belonging to a “lower caste” Shravan Singh (Vineet Kumar Singh), and a “mute” girl belonging to an “upper caste” family named Sunaina Mishra (Zoya Hussain). Comprising of some fine performance by the entire star cast, Kashyap brilliantly fuses a typical Bollywood template of romance with real issues such as sports politics in India and casteism to produce an “engaging” and “entertaining” film. Another unique feature of this movie is the fantastic music composed by Nucleya and Rachita Arora, who combine elements of folk and rap quite brilliantly to create an outstanding soundtrack. Above all, it is the great vision and direction provided by Kashyap that has eventually helped this film aptly titled “Mukkabaaz” to “pack a punch” especially in terms of the critical acclaim.
g. Dev D- Anurag Kashyap
“Devdas with a twist” would be the best way to describe the 2009 Anurag Kashyap directed Bollywood Romantic Movie Dev D. Based on the Bengali novel “Devdas” written by Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay, this movie revolves around a love triangle involving Devindra Dhillon aka Dev (Abhay Deol), Parminder aka Paro (Mahie Gill), and Leni aka Chanda (Kalki Koechlin). Oscillating between Punjab and Delhi, this movie basically is a “dark love saga” which shows how even despite a severe “heartbreak” an individual can still find “redemption”. In addition, the brilliant story, direction, and great performances by the star cast is well supported by “path breaking” music composed by Amit Trivedi, who won a National Award in the music category for his work in this movie. More importantly this film proves that “Behind every dark cloud there is a silver lining”, and so one must never give up hope in life.
h. Naach- Ram Gopal Varma
“Love sandwiched in between ego’s” is the concept upon which the 2004 Ram Gopal Varma directed Bollywood Romantic Movie Naach has been conceived. Based on a love story involving a “realist” Abhinav (Abhishek Bachchan) and an “idealist” Reva (Antara Mali), this movie basically shows us how the principles of “realism” and “idealism” can interfere with love. Comprising of a few peppy songs by music director Amar Mohile and decent performances by lead protagonists Abhishek and Antara, this film is essentially a mature take on love. Although, not one of Varma’s best work, Naach is still an interesting romantic movie which illustrates that true love can truly overcome all odds including “human ego”.
i. Raincoat- Rituparno Ghosh
“A melancholic love story about two lovers separated by cruel twist of faith” is what the 2004 Bollywood Romantic Movie Raincoat directed by Rituparno Ghosh is all about. Revolving around a rendezvous between two former lovers Manu (Ajay Devgn) and Neerja (Aishwarya Rai) on a rainy afternoon in Kolkata, this movie shows us the value of “sacrifice” in love. Based on a short story written by O Henry titled “The Gift of Magi”, this film through the brilliant use of classical music and poetry capture the essence of “unfulfilled” love very sensitively. Studded by brilliant performances especially by Aishwarya Rai and Annu Kapoor, Raincoat above all is film that tells us no matter what the circumstances true “love” shared between two human beings never ever fades away.
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