As far as ‘Bollywood’ goes, films usually don’t reach the stage of badass here – they just reach ‘bad’ and disintegrate after that. So there are no badass children films… instead, there are just bad children (Tusshar Kapoor), very bad ones (Uday Chopra) and the downright ugly ones (Mimoh!!!).
Except for a rare Masoom or a Taare Zameen Par, films about children don’t do too well in India – everything from a Makdee and Rockford to Raju Chacha and Waah! Life Ho To Aisi! all failed to hold up. That is particularly ironical because directors like Anees Bazmee with the IQ of children and actors like Salman Khan with skills not half as good as them seem to be thriving (damn you, Bollywood).
Mr India is perhaps the only cult children’s film in India, but there’s easily another mainstream movie that deserves to be right up there with it. 1993’s Hum Hain Rahi Pyaar Ke, directed by Mahesh Bhatt, is one of those few Hindi movies that is well directed, well acted, has a great script, and that actually ended up doing pretty well too! In short, it was a miracle!
The film, starring Aamir Khan and Juhi Chawla in the lead roles, but supported with everything from eggs to tomatoes by three brilliant kids (Kunal Khemu, Shahrokh and Ashrafa), is one of those few comedies that are less slapstick and more heart. About a bachelor forced to take upon responsibility of the three troublesome kids of his brother, who passes away in an accident along with his wife, the movie has some of the finest writing you’d see in any Hindi film ever.
The supporting cast, from the rolly-polly lawyer Tiku Tulsania to the Sindhi villains Dilip Tahil and Navneet Nishan to the Japan-return Mushtaq Khan, is out-and-out hilarious, but of course, it’s the three kids (who’ve now grown into wannabe actors and failed actors) who bring the script alive with their pranks, their fantastic acting and their dazzling chemistry that lights up the screen like its Christmas!
Watch this film because it’s a genuinely crazy movie made from a genuinely remarkable script, featuring genuinely badass children who’ll not stop until you genuinely enjoy. Ok, I should genuinely stop writing now.
Starring: Aamir Khan, Juhi Chawla, Dilip Tahil
Written By: Robin Bhatt, Aamir Khan, Sujit Sen
Directed By: Mahesh Bhatt
Note: This recommendation first appeared in MTV Noise Factory, November 2011 issue
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