Some of them continue to be underrated gems while others have received cult status over the years. Regardless, they all began their sojourn on the silver screen as ‘small’ films but went on to get bouquets for their content. Made by names like Anurag Kashyap, Dibakar Banerjee, Sudhir Mishra and Kabeer Kaushik, here are 15 underrated gems which will forever end your complain that Bollywood doesn’t produce good films. If you haven’t already, you must watch every single one of them and give them a belated hurrah.
1. Citylights (2014)
A beautiful and thought-provoking film, Citylights captures the dark side of the city of dreams, Mumbai. With actors like Rajkummar Rao working under National Award-winning director Hansal Mehta, the emotional turmoil of a couple from a small village in search of a better life in Mumbai is heart wrenching.
2. Tere Bin Laden (2010)
Abhishek Sharma’s satire on Osama bin Laden, America’s war on terror and post-9/11 world scenario is one of the most hilarious spoofs of recent times. Grab your copy of its DVD now.
3. Phas Gaye Re Obama (2010)
Subhash Kapoor’s comedy of errors is full of smart dialogues. From recession affecting a gangster’s business to a broke NRI, this film is a hilarious take on organised crime, crime-politics nexus and the great American dream.
4. Gulaal (2009)
Anurag Kashyap’s Gulaal may have gained cult status now but the film had to wait for years before it got a theatrical release. Starring Kay Kay Menon, Abhimanyu Singh, Deepak Dobriyal, Ayesha Mohan, Jesse Randhawa, Piyush Mishra and Aditya Srivastava, the film explores power equations, perceived injustices and hypocrisy of those in power. It remains one of the best socio-political commentaries on our society.
5. Black and White (2008)
The Anil Kapoor-starrer explores the life of an Afghan suicide bomber who meets an idealist teacher while on a mission. The movie traces the intricacies of the fight of good and bad within a person.
7. Dil Dosti Etc (2007)
Directed by Manish Tiwary, Dil Dosti Etc featured Shreyas Talpade, Imaad Shah, Nikita Anand, Smriti Mishra and Ishita Sharma in pivotal roles. It exposes the growing stature of anti-social elements in student politics and university unions.
8. Black Friday (2007)
Anurag Kashyap’s Black Friday, based on the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts was released four years after the film was made - only after the TADA court finalised its judgement in the case. Based on writer-journalist S Hussain Zaidi’s book Black Friday - The True Story of the Bombay Bomb Blasts, the film chronicles the blasts and their aftermath.