For my Hindi pick,is certainly not one of SRK’s biggest films but I love it. Fantasy films seem to be unusual in Hindi cinema, and in this film Shahrukh Khan plays a number counting merchant husband, and a Ghost or spirit (sort of a genie, really) who takes his place. Rani Mukerji is the bride who captivates the Ghost, with Amitabh as a wise shepherd in a cameo. It’s a fable that is also about women’s empowerment, and the scene where SRK tells Rani he’s a ghost is one of my all-time favorites.
And the soundtrack!!
My Tamil pick is Mani Ratman’s 2015 film OK Kanmani, with music by A. R. Rahman. A young couple (the charming Dulquer Salmaan and Nithya Menon) wants to live together because they are cynical about marriage. They learn about true love from an older married couple. Prakash Raj (who we’re used to see as a villain in Hindi films) plays a devoted husband to his wife with Alzheimer’s. If you live in the US, it is on Netflix streaming, and I highly recommend this wonderful film. I sought out this film after hearing the song Mental Manadhil at an A. R. Rahman concert. So glad I did!
Dulquer Salmaan from OK Kanmani is usually in Malayalam films, and that’s what brought me to watch the Malayalam film Bangalore Days. This is my number one pick of Malayalam films I’ve seen so far. It’s a wonderful coming of age tale about three cousins and has a great ensemble of young Malayalam actors in it. Ohm Shanti Oshana is also a great woman centered film (with the same lead actress above), but Bangalore Days, Bangalore Days, Bangalore Days!
For Telugu films, there can be only one — Baahubali! I was so blown away by this film, I watched it four times in the theater! This film is available dubbed in Hindi, but you can readily rent the Telugu version on Youtube. Prabhas plays a dual role, Shivuvu and Baahubali. It is EPIC. It’s a fantasy with stunning visuals. S. S. Rajamouli cannot be matched for his imagination in film (have you seen Eega where the hero is a FLY?) The battle scenes rival films like Gladiator, and there are several kick-ass women characters. Mirchi is my second favorite Telugu film I’ve seen so far, also starring Prabhas with Sathyaraj (Kattappa in Baahubali). It’s so long to wait till 2017 for part 2 of Baahubali!!