The festive season has begun with Rakhi, Janmashtami and now Ganesh Chaturthi, but how much are we really able to celebrate them? We are still wary of large gatherings, so every celebration, from birthdays to festivals, is marred by the impact of Covid-19. Who would have thought we'd still be stuck in our homes in August?
While we wait for the pandemic to blow over, and who knows how many more months that will be, you need pick-me-ups from time to time to prevent falling into the slump of sour mood. We're telling you how to go about it with this series of regional feel-good movies that we suggest every Sunday.
It is Marathi movies this weekend. Coinciding with the Ganesh Chaturthi weekend was not deliberate, I swear.
Bucket List (Netflix)
Madhura Sane (Madhuri Dixit) is the ideal wife, housewife and mother, living in beautiful house with her in-laws. She leads the life of an ordinary, happy homemaker. She is so used to living for others, that right before her heart transplant surgery, she makes the nurse notes down instructions for her family members, in case something happens to her. But the heart transplant changes her life. She finds out that her donor was a young girl, who wanted to complete her bucket list before turning 21. Out of gratitude, Madhura sets out to complete all the tasks, even disrupting her peaceful household in the process. She also learns to love herself, recognize her independence, let loose and live a little. Madhuri’s reunion with her Hum Aapke Hain Koun co-star Renuka Shahane is a bonus in this sweet and simple movie.
Anything Mithila Palkar stars in becomes feel-good by default. Here she is one half of a couple that is torn by their different ideas about life and ambition. Her boyfriend (Amey Wagh), despite being a B-school gold medalist, is content teaching in the same school. On the other hand, Indu (Mithila) is extremely driven in her ad agency job, aiming for bigger achievements. His fear of taking risks in his career drives a wedge between the two and they break up. But the real delight in this film is how his parents (Sachin Khedekar and Chinmayi Sumit), through the course of one day, help their son realize the real issues in his life. They are not only cool enough to have accepted their son’s girlfriend as part of their family, they also recognize the flaws in their own son and the qualities of the girl that he is dating. The film, in its progressive approach towards parenting, is a refreshing watch.
Coffee Aani Barach Kahi (Disney+ Hotstar)
The troubles that ensue when you cannot confess your feelings for someone is explored in this sweet romantic movie. Jaai (Prarthana Behere) falls in love with Nishad (Vaibhav Tatwawaadi) at work but is unable to say it to him. Nishad too likes her, but thinks that she should understand from his behavior towards her instead of him saying it out loud. The film brings out the irony of their situation when Jaai’s parents introduce her to another man as a potential match, and she spends the whole meeting talking about Nishad. Her sister, her friends, everyone know about her feelings, except for Nishad himself. The film is way too real and relatable, reminding us how expecting the other person to make the first move is not always the best way to go about a relationship.
Premachi Goshta (Amazon Prime Video)
Divorce counselor’s office is probably the last place you’d expect to find love. But that’s what happens to Ram (Atul Kulkarni) and Saloni (Sagarika Ghatge). They meet in the process of separating from their spouses. While Ram still hopes to reconcile with his wife, Saloni has developed a bitterness to the whole idea of marriage. They meet again at the workplace and get to know each other better. Despite their poles-apart attitude towards marriage, the two of them develop a bond and eventually fall in love. When they finally overcome their individual misunderstandings to finally want to be together, their former spouses enter the scene. It’s nice to see Atul Kulkarni, who has played various character roles, in a romantic role for a change. Sagarika made her debut in Marathi cinema through this film.
AB Aani CD (Amazon Prime Video)
This film, although feel-good, deals with an issue that we often do not give much thought to. Chandrakanth Deshpande (Vikram Gokhale) is the patriarch in a family where he has been rendered irrelevant by his daughters-in-law, and his sons don’t do much to better his situation. When life seems pointless to him altogether, his grandkids hatch a plan to make their grandpa important in the family again. In walks AB, that is Amitabh Bachchan, who was apparently Chandrakanth’s classmate in a school in Allahabad. Chandrakanth is invited to attend a school reunion organized by Bachchan. It immediately elevates his status in the family, from being a neglected old man to the friend of a superstar. The film reminds us that we should not undervalue the contributions of our elders in our lives and support them when old age makes them weak and lonely. The film is thematically similar to Bachchan’s Hindi film, Baghban.
We'll be back with more such movie suggestions next week.