By Rajbinder Grewal
Bollywood shows and movies to watch on Netflix
Spending more time at home, means most of us have found ourselves reacquainting with our televisions because really there is little else to do for some down time right now. With all of this new found time in the comfort (and safety) of our homes, it gives us a chance to reconnect with all things Bollywood, both old and new.
Here’s what to watch on your next Netflix and chai session:
What to watch for Date Night:
Sacred Games: So while this is not a romantic Bollywood movie, this show has released two seasons on Netflix as an original series and is full of suspense, intrigue and thrills. It follows a two timelines that parallel one of fugitive gang boss and one of an honest cop (played by Saif Ali Khan as a sardar), both on a quest to save Mumbai. It is a smart, well written show with great acting and with subtitles so even a non-Bollywood enthusiast can enjoy.
Dil Chatta Hai: A coming of age story filled with romance and drama that follows the lives of three friends post graduation navigating family and love. Set in a present day Indian metropolis, the movie explores mature love, the stigma of divorce, a friendship evolving into love and modern day arranged marriages. It doesn’t hurt that this movie has a stellar cast of Aamir Khan, Saif Ali Khan, Akshaye Khanna, Preity Zinta and Dimple Kapadia.
Billu: Starring the very talented late Irrfan Khan and featuring Shah Rukh Khan, this comedic drama is a feel good movie. Taking place in an small, ordinary Indian village, it follows the uneventful life of a poor barber and his family. Their ordinary lives are changed when a superstar actor comes to the village to shoot a movie
What to watch with the Grandparents
Lagaan: Set in the 1890s with a stellar cast lead by Aamir Khan, this historical movie will entertain. It will also educate and drum up patriotic sentiments as we watch a small Indian Village stand up to the British Raj over exorbitant land taxes. The battle between the two sides is settled over a game of cricket and will enthral even the non sports fan.
Hum Aapke Hain Koun: So many of us are missing out on the Big Fat Indian wedding this summer so why not bring it to the big screen. The whole family can enjoy the music and festivities of a large intergenerational family celebrating a wedding.
Rang De Basanti: An important movie about five Indian freedom fighters and a modern day documentary that is filmed about some historical events. The reluctant actors cast to recreate the story that was found in a diary, end up learning about and embodying the spirit of the revolutionary fighters who came before them. This movie tells an important story, woven into the vibrant fabric of modern life in India while reflecting on the sacrifices of those who fought for freedom from the British Raj.
What to watch with the kids
Taare Zameen Par: A charming story about a young boy with learning challenges who is sent to boarding school. There he is taken under the wing by his art teacher, the seasoned Aamir Khan and shown that his unique talents and gifts are empowering rather than limiting. This movie celebrates children and their diverse abilities. It is a feel good family film.
Kabhie Khushi Khabie Gham: A modern classic movie full of melodrama about a wealthy family and familial expectations. With a superstar cast, stunning outfits, and music that will get the whole family out of their seats, this is an easy pick for a family movie night.
Patiala House: A story of a talented young cricket player who seeks to abide by his father’s wishes but also wants to live his dreams. The fun, lively music with a large Punjabi family where each family member seeks to live out their own identity is highly entertaining and will have the kids get up and break out into dance.
Delhi Crime: created by Canadian filmmaker Richie Mehta of Amal fame, this limited series takes us through the infamous Delhi rape case of 2012. With a strong female lead, we watch the search for the culprits of the case that took over international headlines . It promises for excellent watching while sensitively handling a very difficult topic.
Never Have I Ever: Produced by Mindy Kaling and featuring a Canadian born actress in the lead, this English language show is about a coming of age story of a teenage girl who copes with losing her father, the pressures from her typical Indian mother and fitting into high school in mainstream America while exploring identity issues. This is a bonus watch with the tween or teen in your life where you can laugh, cry and even cringe a little together.
Period End of Sentence: A short informative and uplifting documentary about the education and empowerment of women in India about menstruation. An important and appropriate watch with your older kids and teens.
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