In India, our love for films is deep. We love to laugh with them, and we love when they make us cry. They keep us on the edge of our seats, and they make us travel to a world far away. No matter your mood, Netflix gave us all. Half a year down, and half a year to go, here are some of the best films of the year so far.
Sit down for family movie night!
Tribhanga: Tedhi Meri Crazy
A heart-warming story of family, love and loss, this multi-generational Netflix watch is the perfect fit for your family movie night. Directed by Renuka Shahane, it takes an in-depth look into the changing family dynamics of three women in a family setting. Helmed by Kajol, Tanvi Azmi and Mithila Palkar, this relatable film will leave you with a smile on your face.
An eccentric dramedy, Pagglait takes a look at a young widow, Sandhya, played by Sanya Malhotra, as she navigates the loss of her husband. Being a widow at such a young age, she has to juggle her emotions (or lack thereof), her in-laws and her quirky family. Watch along through this film, filled with a stellar cast including Sayani Gupta, Rajesh Tailang, and witness Sandhya setting onto a path of self-discovery, attempting to find her identity and purpose in life.
Gems of the South:
What’s the best way to get to know all the powerhouses of Telugu cinema? Through an anthology of films on love, of course. Pitta Kathalu, Netflix’s first Telugu film is packed with tons of emotion, sensational performances and a feeling of wanting to know more about the life of four incredible women. Whether it’s Sanvee Meghana and Lakshmi Manchu’s dynamic character in Ramula or Amala Paul’s fierce character in Meera, these stories will be sure to strike a chord with you.
Starring Yogi Babu, Sheela Rajkumar and Sangili Murugan, Mandela is a political satire which follows the story of two political parties competing in the local elections who will stop at nothing to win. In a twist of fate, the single deciding vote comes down to a small-time barber. This unconventional Netflix watch is both entertaining and impactful and will make you see the importance of a single vote in a new light.
A film that will get you thinking, this Malayalam thriller, starring Kunchako Boban, Joju George and Nimisha Sajayan brings you the best of the South. The story is a simple one: a new cop comes into town and is trying to find his way in the force when he is hit with a high profile case. A chase for justice, mixed with politics, integrity and gritty performances, this will have you hooked you right to the very end.
Critically acclaimed titles that you’ll love:
An entry into the main competition section at the 77th Venice International Film Festival, this Marathi film, directed by Chaitanya Tamhane, is sure to keep you glued to your screen. Starring Aditya Modak, the film follows his character Sharad Nerulkar, as he finds himself questioning his traditions and discipline in his quest to become the best Indian classical music vocalist. From the award-winning screenplay to the cast performances and impeccable direction, there is nothing that you won’t love about this one.
Director Ivan Ayr’s film Milestone (Meel Patthar) deals with an age-old story: how can you stay relevant in the face of something new coming along. The film premiered at the 77th Venice International Film Festival and was also screened at the 25th Busan and the Pingyao International Film Festivals. It deals with a newly bereaved truck driver (Suvinder Vicky), who reaches a milestone of 500,000 kms on the road, and now finds himself threatened by a new, young worker, who might take away the job that has defined him all these years.
Stories that will keep you hooked right till the end:
The White Tiger
An adaptation of Arvind Adiga’s best-selling novel of the same name, The White Tiger is a Netflix thriller that will keep you at the edge of your seat, even if you have read the book. Directed by Ramin Bahrani, the film is held together by the breakout performance of Adarsh Gourav, who was nominated for a BAFTA award for best actor and won at the Asian World Film Festival for his role as Balram. Bolstered by stellar performances by Rajkummar Rao and Priyanka Chopra Jonas, the film with its thrilling screenplay will have you feeling like you’re a character in Balram, Pinky and Ashok’s twisted world of power and money.
An anthology film that deals with love and it’s various hiccups, Ajeeb Daastaans will pull at your heartstrings, leave you shocked and also make you rethink the definition of what we think love is. Whether it’s the story of forbidden love and betrayal in Neeraj Ghaywan’s Geeli Pucchi, Manav Kaul stealing our hearts in Ankahi or Jaideep Ahlawat and Fatima Sana Shaikh’s twisted meaning of love in Majnu, these stories will help everyone relate to some sense of wanting to find love and belonging.