Four Reasons I Love Hindi Movies

Tonight, in preparation for writing this post, I asked my husband what he thought was weirdest about me.  Ever the tactful man, (because this can be a slippery slope) he brought up something innocuous: My enjoyment of Hindi movies.

I love Hindi movies. I didn’t always, but was introduced to them by some Indian friends from college, when we spent many a happy evening watching them. We’d drink chai, groan over the silliness of the movies, and we would use them as tools, both for them to tell me about their homes and families, and help explain cultural and social differences.

Cohiba (my husband) had not seen one until we started dating, and he decided to try one: Lagaan. It’s an excellent movie that been nominated for an Oscar the year it came out. However, its four hours long, and about cricket – a game longer than baseball.

One of the dance scenes

Alas, this was enough to turn him off all Hindi movies; he was especially turned off by the singing and dancing, like the example above.  I haven’t been able to show him one since.

FHe may not understand why I like these movies, so in no particular order, I’m going to list my top four reasons.* Perhaps he will read them and understand.:

1. This one will obviously not apply to everyone but I have wonderful memories of dear friends connected with these movies, and anytime I see one, the memories come back.

2. They are well made and beautiful.  This means they also lack the “authenticity” or “gritty realness” that some American movies strive for, but it’s fun. Not one hair is unintentionally out-of-place, the colors and fabrics are always arranged just “so.” It’s beautiful.

3. The films are over the top, but they are unabashed about being over the top.  I love that kind of commitment and energy. Even the fans of these movies are unashamed about their enjoyment of them, singing and dancing along. (However, sometimes this “over-the-top” (especially depicted in the movies) borders on abuse or stalking, and that I don’t like. Its not romantic nor is it loving.)

4. Have you seen a Hindi movie in a theater?  It is a radically different experience from a traditional Gora (white person) theater, and gets back to the unabashedness.  It also makes it more enjoyable to be able to make fun of it with other people.

Have you seen a Hindi fil-em?  What do you think about them or enjoy about them?

*This is based on my limited and Gori viewing of only a few.  More expanded viewing would, undoubtedly, inform these reasons considerably.

6 thoughts on “Four Reasons I Love Hindi Movies

  1. hahaha I loved how you used the word gora. Most Indians and Pakistanis like myself adore indian movies. I can’t and don’t watch most for various reasons. And I am a huge hollywood movie buff. But I have some favorites india actors I never miss watching. You described the movies brilliantly. There are some amazing and real hindi movies too that have actual substance. I can always share a list:). Glad to have this love for hindi movies in common with you:).

    1. Good! I’m so glad you got what I meant! The more Hindi films I’ve seen, the more I can find the ones with substance and realness, not just the Hrithik Roshan showcase. 🙂 Please do share a list! Which ones are your favorites?

      1. Hmmm, well Hritek Roshan’s movie GUZARISH is awesome, if you are looking for a different image of his. And mostly I am a Shahrukh khan fan. Though for the past few years his movies have been completely over the top! But he was a childhood love so that is hard to snap out of. I admire Amir Khan. His movie The Three Idiots is awesome. You have already seen LAGAN. He is known for movies with a lot of substance and a great topic, usually. Taaray Zameen Par is another one of his better movies. And another interesting movie is BARFI, by Ranbir Kapoor. A different romantic movie and great acting. If you go back, there are much nicer movies in terms of substance. But then sometimes you want mindless absurdities in life:) And that is when many movies like Happy New Year, Om Shanti Om, Dhoom, Dabang fall in. :)… If you need any more movie ideas in the future, I ‘d be happy to help 😀

      2. 🙂 Okay. My big period of watching Hindi films was in the early 2000s, and a LOT of them has SRK. I saw Kal Ho Naa Ho in the theater with my friends. I watched Kabhi Kushi Kabhi Gham more times than I can count. I can probbaly quote whole scenes, in Hindi and English. 🙂 I remember having a lot of talks with (my then boyfriend Pinal and my rakhi brother Bhavin) about SRK’s character’s relationship with his parents/father. Later, Pinal sent me some movies to watch, including Chalte Chalte, which I really wanted to see. That was one that really impressed me in terms of depth, because, at least for SRK films, I hadn’t seen him show such range as he did in that movie. I really like that one. I’ve heard about Dil Se – thank you for the reminder! I would really like to see it! Thanks for the suggestions!

      3. Umm I love Sri Devi. She was an icon in her time. Her recent movie was English Vinglish. A light, heart warming entertainment. Her famous old movies were LAMHE (one of my all time favorites) and Chaandni. Shahrukh Khan’s DIL SE is mindblowing. Ok I need to stop. haha. Sorry :$

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