When the starting sequence of a film unfolds with a song as quirky as Picture Shuru, you can be assured that what follows is no ordinary tale.
Fresh from the debacle of Kites, Anurag Basu firmly turned a deaf ear to his critics and embarked on the most ambitious project of his career. Tearing all conventions to shreds, he set about sketching the love story of a speech impaired boy and an autistic girl. And ended up creating a masterpiece that left not just us, but the jury at the Academy Awards dumbstruck.
In our quest to hunt down the best 5 flicks of 2012, we inevitably ended up handing the #1 trophy to:
Barfi! (September, 2012)
Net Collections: 118 crores
The Story: Born deaf – mute and named after a radio brand, Murphy is the reigning king on the 1970s’ flirting circuit, who manages to charm girls without having to resort to ten different corny pickup lines. Cupid strikes when this Charlie-Chaplin-meets-Raj-Kapoor chap runs into pretty girl Shruti. However, fate has something else in mind when Shruti gets married to a well-to-do Bengali babu & circumstances reunite him with his childhood autistic friend, Jhilmil.
The Aww-some Factor: After bringing the house down with his power packed performance in Rockstar, Ranbir slips into the skin of a deaf-mute with an ease that speaks volumes about his maturity as an actor. Aided by the capable Priyanka & the confident Ileana, he sets the scene for a tale of unconditional love that will leave the most avid SRK fan teary eyed!
The Dialogue You Won’t Forget: The beauty of Barfi! lies in the fact that it compels you to wave goodbye to all cheesy catchphrases and crisp dialogues and instead takes you on a ride where a mere gesture is enough to tug at your heartstrings. Typical Bollywood fare? Perhaps not. Amazing cinematic experience? Hell yeah!
Why It’s Worth Those 2 Hours: It isn’t common for a Bollywood film to end on a sad note, but then Barfi! is no ordinary film. Set across three timelines, Barfi! actually manages to survive without the over the top period costumes and the requisite tear inducing speeches. Spare Murphy and Jhilmil your pity, all they ask for is acceptance.
So while the naysayers content themselves with crying foul over its resemblance to Charlie Chaplin, we prefer to celebrate the fact that Bollywood is finally coming of age. Keep going like this Anurag, and maybe we will one day reach a stage when high voltage action & nonsensical melodrama aren’t the only things required for a movie to be deemed a hit!