Laughter they say is the best medicine and who doesn’t want to run away from a life full of stress. The hectic schedules have entrapped the man of today in cobwebs that are hard to break. After leading a life at its strenuous best, the moments of laughter and giggles are often valued to a great extent. Comedy films though make many a people laugh their hearts out; they are the hardest to script and live up to. The least we can do is to recollect some of the finest comedies that Bollywood has witnessed and make our hearts feel lighter my shedding a few laughs here and there.
1. Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro
Director: Kundan Shah
Producer: National Film Development Corporation (NFDC)
Story and screenplay: Sudhir Mishra, Kundan Shah
Stars: Naseeruddin Shah, Ravi Baswani, Om Puri, Pankaj Kapur, Satish Shah, Bhakti Barve, Satish Kaushik, Neena Gupta
Release date: 12 August 1983
This is what one must call a cult classic. Satires have never failed to delight the audiences because they hold the strength to mirror to the world what the real situation is but at the same time take a rather humorous take on it.
A political satire, Jane Bhi Do Yaaro is an ultimate Black Comedy. Directed by the great Kundan Shah, the movie is a revelation of corruption in our country’s system. How the movie throws away this fake façade is what makes it exclusive and truly remarkable. The structuring has been perfect and so has the comic timing; one point that decides whether a comedy will be a success or failure. Wit is conquered in almost every second sequence and this surely leaves the audience struggling to control their endless laughter spree.
The most memorable scene in the movie is of course that appears during its climax, the closing scene in which the stars play the roles of Mahabharata characters. The act couldn’t have been tackled more tactfully.
Filled with hilarious scenes, the movie is indeed a lifetime classic and must watch of any bollywood comedy movie lover.
2. Andaz Apna Apna
Director: Rajkumar Santoshi
Producer: Vinay Kumar Sinha
Screenplay & Dialogues: Rajkumar Santoshi (screenplay & dialogues), Dilip Shukla (dialogues)
Story: Rajkumar Santoshi
Stars: Aamir Khan, Salman Khan, Raveena Tandon, Karisma Kapoor, Paresh Rawal, Shakti Kapoor
Release date: 11 April 1994
The strength of this movie is pretty much the star cast which has done complete justice to the role given to them in the movie. With Aamir Khan and Salman Khan playing their respective roles opposite the leading ladies Karisma Kapoor and Raveena Tandon, the movie is an ongoing struggle between the two young men to outsmart each other and win over the rich girl.
Paresh Rawal’s double role and the mystery of a mark on his face have brought tears to people’s eyes, tears of joy of course.Slapstick humour also does its bit and this one also became a super hit due to its impeccable delivery. The dialogues became legendary too. The lines of ‘crime master Gogo; aankhein nikalkar gotiya khelta hoon’ and ‘aap toh purush nahi, mahapurush hain’ are remembered till date. Audiences went ballistic after the release of the movie.
Not only did they love the dialogues, songs like ‘Yeh raat aur yeh doori’ also got people grooving. In a nutshell, Andaz Apna Apna movie was a phenomenal and much deserving success.
3. Hera Pheri
Producer: A.G. Nadiadwala
Screenplay: Neeraj Vora
Stars: Akshay Kumar, Sunil Shetty, Paresh Rawal, Tabu,
Release date: 31 March 2000
Fun, frolic and trickery is what Hera Pheri movie is all about.
With Paresh Rawal, Sunil Shetty and Akshay Kumar holding the reins of the film, little is the doubt left if the movie will be a comic success.
Priyadarshan has taken up the theme of antics to a new level with this masterpiece. You could totally tumble laughing at Om Puri’s character who is Khadak Singh. His role in fact gave birth to the much celebrated dialogue- ‘Khadak Singh ke khadakne se kharadakti hain khidkiyan’. The Indian cinematic sensibilities were starving to taste humour and this smart comedy gave it the much needed relief.
Unstoppable laughter and utmost thrill is what this movie gifts you when you are watching it. A true comedy with not much sense, it is an example that will stay etched in people’s memories for years to come.
4. Chachi 420
Director: Kamal Hassan
Producer: Kamal Hassan, Chandra Hassan
Story: Kamal Hassan
Stars: Kamal Hassan, Amrish Puri, Om Puri, Tabu, Johnny Walker, Paresh Rawal, Ayesha Jhulka, Nassar
Release date: 19 December 1998
Do you also want to sing Chupudi Chupudi Chaachi….Chupudi Chupudi Chachi? Well such was the influence of this movie that it could make any person fall in immediate love with it.
A struggling star falls in love with a girl from a highly affluent family. The love turns into marriage which as Bollywood norms suggest isn’t accepted by the girl’s father. On facing difficulties in the marriage, Tabu (playing the rich girl’s role) return to her father’s house but with a young daughter. Kamal Hasan, playing the protagonist decides to win back his family and hence, has to deceive them by turning into a maid for his wife’s house. Not only does this job keep him close to his sweetheart daughter but also gets him the opportunity to regain the love of his wife that had been lost in the misunderstandings of life.
The way the movie has been treated and tackled leaves the audience amused and completely thrilled. The puns, the get up and the plot are exemplary and have set benchmarks that were hard to be touched. This is just not worth a miss.
5. Munna Bhai M.B.B.S.
Director: Rajkumar Hirani
Producer: Vidhu Vinod Chopra
Screenplay: Vidhu Vinod Chopra, Rajkumar Hirani, Lajan Joseph Oommen
Story: Vidhu Vinod Chopra, Rajkumar Hirani
b: Sanjay Dutt, Arshad Warsi, Jimmy Shergill, Sunil Dutt, Gracy Singh, Boman Irani
Release date: 19 December 2003
Rib tickling and full of vibrancy, this movie created a league of its own. During the time of its release terms like ‘Munna’ and ‘Bhai’ both gained much popularity. A complete Bollywood success, it floored the audience and won their hearts.
An overly endearing character played by Sanjay Dutt who is a gangster touches everyone’s soul because of the kindness that he holds within. He gets admitted in a medical school to find his lady love and there start a series of instances that reveal the true character of this gangster who doesn’t have a single mean bone in his body. His attempts to adapt to the life of medical school and endless efforts to find the girl of his dreams make it a very relatable comedy.
The ‘jadu ki jhappi’ was a phenomenon in itself and has never been forgotten ever since.
Director: Rohit Shetty
Producer: Dhillin Mehta
Screenplay: Neeraj Vora
Story: Neeraj Vora
Stars: Ajay Devgn, Arshad Warsi, Sharman Joshi, Tusshar Kapoor, Paresh Rawal, Rimi Sen
Release date: 14 July 2006
When four leading Bollywood actors come together as a single package, they have to burn the screen. A funny, action packed movie, Golmal is an interesting form of humour.
The pranks of these four men to manage financial difficulties and to give life a whole new meaning is what takes us through the course of the film.
The character played by Tusshar Kapoor needs a special mention here. He is mute but his body language is extremely hilarious. The notorious foursome is on a never ending adventure of conning people for fun and money of course. The twist also arises when the four friends take rescue in a blind couple’s house where one friend’s body and another’s voice makes for their grandson.
Indeed overwhelming a concept, it breaks you into laughter each time the grandson needs to talk or meet his grandparents. The movie is a complete bundle of super fun and activities that just can’t fail to surprise. All in all it is a movie that must be watched if you want to enter in the funny gear.
7. Bheja Fry
Director: Sagar Ballary
Producer: Sunil Doshi
Stars: Vinay Pathak, Rajat Kapoor, Sarika, Ranvir Shorey, Milind Soman
Release date: 13 April, 2007
Witty conversations and super animated comedy is what comprises this classical film.
The storyline is borrowed from a French film but that doesn’t hamper it from matching the Indian sensibilities.
The story is based on two people majorly and one of them is a big shot in the music industry. He can make or break the lives of many individuals aspiring to enter the industry. This influential man has a weird habit of inviting these aspiring singers to his Friday night dinners and parties but just to catch them by their neck and make a mockery out of them – he calls them his ‘bakras’. One day he calls his new bakra, the other protagonist in the film, who is a clerk barely, making both ends meet. While attempting to play his usual trick, the over smart man ends up breaking his back. Well as funny as it may sound his wife leave him and now he is in a desperate need of help. The bakra who wants to be a singer comes to his rescue and then you must watch what follows.
Everything runs helter-skelter. The funniest aspect is that man who thinks he is helping the world and is a brilliant singer is actually a total mess. He is totally unaware of this fact and he is convinced he is doing everything just right. Shuttling between these two men, the story is a a watch that tickles you often.
8. Khosla Ka Ghosla
Director: Dibakar Banerjee
Producer: Savita Raj Hiremath, Ronnie Screwval
Screenplay: Jaideep Sahni
Stars: Anupam Kher, Boman Irani, Parvin Dabas, Vinay Pathak, Ranvir Shorey
Music: Bapi-Tutul, Dhruv Dhalla, Jaideep Sahni (lyrics)
Release date: 22 September 2006
Some movies are must recommendations and this is surely one of those few.
The intertwined issues of land encroachment and growing distances in families are both dealt with a touch of humour.
A man almost heading towards his retirement wants to finally live a few peaceful years and thinks he must add the aspect of luxury to it. He hence buys a piece of land in South Delhi but only to realise that his dream of leading a happy life in the new house has been cursed by his own son who wants to fly off to America. Trying to mend the gap between the father and the son, the man is further disappointed when he learns that his land has been taken over by a businessman who cannot be battled.
Focussing on these issues which every second middle class person faces in our country, the movie with the help of its very strong cast has done a fabulous work in the domain of comedy. Taunting our system, it’s a perfect watch for a lazy day.
9. 3 Idiots
Director: Rajkumar Hirani
Producer: Vidhu Vinod Chopra
Screenplay: Abhijat Joshi, Rajkumar Hirani, Vidhu Vinod Chopra
Story: Abhijat Joshi, Rajkumar Hirani
Stars: Aamir Khan, Kareena Kapoor, R. Madhavan, Sharman Joshi, Boman Irani, Omi Vaidya, Mona Singh, Parikshit Sahni
Music: Shantanu Moitra
Release date: 25 December 2009
When Aamir Khan takes up a movie then it has be substantially good. Even better is when he takes up a comic film; now you know that your funny bone quite literally will be fiddled with.
An absolute hit during the year of its release; 3 Idiots created a rage among masses and the elite both. Phunsuk Wangdu played by Aamir Khan believes that every person is a true genius but even if a bird were asked swim it would miserably fail at doing so. The charcter of Chatur adds another comic dimension in the film especially when his speech at the medical college is completely changed by the trio of the three best (one of them being Aamir). Kareena Kapoor has also done a brilliant job in the movie especially with her dialogue making fun of all the Gujarati dishes and the way they sound. With a deep meaning hidden behind a comical script, the movie is a revolutionary take both in the genres of comedy movies and in terms of the mindsets that most of us hold for our careers and lives.
It’s a great learning to take back home with the bonus of being totally entertained throughout the movie.
10. Delhi Belly
Director: Abhinay Deo
Producer: Aamir Khan, Kiran Rao, Ronnie Screwvala, Jim Furgele
Story: Akshat Verma
Stars: Imran Khan, Vir Das, Kunaal Roy Kapur, Poorna Jagannathan, Shenaz Treasurywala
Music: Ram Sampath
Release date: 1 July 2011
A drastically different take at comedy, this one has gone all the way with the censor versus uncensored content.
With foul language being a kind of USP and the ways sexual connotations have been dealt with in the film, it shows a growing side of our film industry. The plot is a traditional exchange of things plot: a classic mix up.
Three young lads share a room and one of them east street food to get a bad stomach. His loose motions need to be tested and when the stool sample gets exchanged with a stash of diamonds, all the trouble begins. The gangsters are chasing these men all over the city of Delhi while the three are trying to tackle love, happiness and relations. A very cleverly developed plot, the sheer daftness is what brings this movie all its credit. No super brain but just a different perspective and that’s what make Delhi Belly really special.
May comedy live and get better and better every passing year! Our industry produces several dozens of movies every year and a few always take up the genre of comedy. One can see continuous developments in the way it is paving its path from straight faced jokes to subtle satires. The strength of this genre lies in the fact that it is capable of handling the gravest of issues in the simplest of manner. Here’s to many more years of laughter !