If you are a 90s kid like the one writing this piece for his paycheck and passion (being Abhay Deol level honest here) and watched films in the early 2000s, we were born to the generation of transition. Superstar was trying to hold their position in front of the parallel, Govinda doing his thing and Salman Khan continuing his era of being the lover with abs. Amid all of this rose a disruptor who played the common man with subtlety and realism, qualities that superstars hardly looked at. The man was Abhay Deol.
It isn’t an unknown fact that the Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara star is one of the most underrated actors in Bollywood. It has indeed become his second name. Making his way to the big screen with Imtiaz Ali in 2005, the man went on to make a mark with his portrayals of the common man so efficiently, that people were in awe of his calibre. We at Koimoi list down 5 of his best performance that made him the Prince of Parallel Cinema!
One who has followed the journey of this classic tale, know how many renditions already existed until Anurag Kashyap decided to give his twist to the story. Complete contradiction and a surprising one from Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Devdas, Abhay Deol became the destructive lover we all meet in our life and lanes. Not to forget, Mahie Gill & Kalki Koechlin also kept their best food forward, and Devdas got one more successful adaptation.
MANORAMA SIX FEET UNDER
Navdeep Singh’s noir is my most favourite on this list. Here’s a failed author trying to make peace as an engineer. But life has different plans, and he is amid murder and the investigation that follows. Lesser did he know that his novel would turn out to be a big clue. Abhay Deol in Manorama Six Feet Under embodies this hapless human with ease, and you can see him get into the skin of the part. If you haven’t, watch it right away.
SOCHA NA THA
Not just Abhay Deol, but it was also Imtiaz Ali making his debut in 2005 with Socha Na Tha. A filmmaker till date busy finding complexities of love, cast Deol and made one the best decisions. Starring Ayesha Takia alongside it was about two people who are made to meet for arranged marriages, and they reject each other. Cut to a trip together and the realisation that the other isn’t bad to spend life with becomes the plot. The journey isn’t as simple as I explained. It’s Imtiaz, guys!
EK CHALIS KI LAST LOCAL
It’s not just a mode of transport but our lifelines. Ek Chalis Ki Last Local is about two people who miss the popular last local in Mumbai, and things take turn for worse. Sanjay Khanduri’s crime drama is a perfect blend of thrills, suspense, comedy and drama. This has to be one of the most underrated films in the mainstream. Abhay Deol plays the guy embroiled in all the happenings of his fate and is a treat to watch here.
OYE LUCKY! LUCKY OYE!
Trust Dibakar Banerjee to tell you the stories of the unique amid the normal. With Abhay Deol, it was super chor from Delhi, whose story came to life. Bring his charisma and adding cunningness and wit, Deol as the thief sits down to narrate his multiple coups, and dare you to take your eyes off.