The year 2021 was a mishmash of genres, stories, and platforms. While we saw a few big theatrical releases, this was the year of OTT. The biggest stars and directors released their movies directly on OTT while we enjoyed them from our homes.
Here is the list of Bollywood movies that ruled 2021 on different platforms and left a lasting impact on us-
Ajeeb Daastaans is a combination of 4 different short stories. Each story has a twisted storyline that will leave you thinking. With four renowned directors coming together for an anthology, Ajeeb Dasatans was an exciting watch. It included Majnu, Kilauna, Geeli Puchhi, and Ankahi. Ajeeb Daastaans is a mixed bag in general. While two of the films felt ordinary, the other two had a lasting impact.
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Director Neeraj Ghaywan tackles homophobia, patriarchy, and casteism with incredible nuance in Geeli Puchhi. As we saw in his debut film Masaan, he gives his lead characters enough texture to evolve on their own without taking sides. Konkona Sen Sharma and Aditi Rao Hydari are outstanding in their roles. The twist at the end is subtle but it has a huge impact.
Moreover, Ankahi effectively uses sign language to elicit emotional responses from viewers. Much of it feels like a slice-of-life storey, with adequate performances and a twist that is only inconsistent with one of the characters' shades.
Chandigarh Kare Aashiqui
Chandigarh Kare Aashiqui is a 2021 Bollywood romance drama by Abhishek Kapoor. Manvinder aka Manu, a gym trainer and heavy weight lifting athlete, falls for the Zumba instructor at his gym in Kare Aashiqui. When he discovers that the girl he likes is a transgender woman, all hell breaks loose. His regressive thoughts and ignorance, as well as opinions of society and his family, drive a schism between them.
Vikrant Massey and Taapsee Pannu starter Haseen Dillruba is a movie about a woman suspected of killing her husband narrated an engaging story about her marriage while investigating police officers looking for clues to arrest her.
Sandeep Aur Pinky Faraar
Arjun Kapoor and Parineeti Chopra starrer Sandeep Aur Pinky Faraar is a dark comedy directed by Dibakar Banerjee. Arjun Kapoor plays Haryanvi Police Officer Pinky Dahiya, and Parineeti Chopra plays a girl who works in the corporate world. What follows is a unique journey that in many ways subverts gender roles.
Dibakar Banerjee certainly knows how to bring out the best in actors like Arjun Kapoor and Parineeti Chopra, who have delivered career-best performances.
Amit Masurkar directed the Bollywood drama Sherni. Vidya plays an honourable forest officer tasked with resolving a man-animal conflict. Her journey becomes metaphorical as she sees conflict from all sides.
Mukul Chadda and Vijay Raaz also play essential roles in the film.
Toofaan, directed by Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra is another power-packed performance by Farhan Akhtar. Toofan is the story of Aziz, a small-time gangster turned boxer who aspires to rise through the sport's ranks.
This honest retelling of the historic victory of the underdog team led by Captain Kapil Dev. '83,' directed by Kabir Khan, captures the journey of this team, which taught a nation to believe and pin its hopes on its cricket players by returning home as a group of uniquely gifted world champions.
With honest performances and tropes to recreate history make this movie a true celebration for the audience.
Shoojit Sircar directed the Bollywood drama Sardar Udham. Vicky Kaushal and Banita Sandhu play the lead roles in the film. This film is based on the life of revolutionary freedom fighter Sardar Udham Singh played with finesse by Kaushal. The movie has time and again been praised for its cinematography and direction ad for its starkly true portrayal of the Jallianwala Bagh massacre.
Pagglait unfolds as an insight into the Indian middle class. Yet, with its unique story and sincere performance by Sanya Malhotra, the movie captures a young woman's journey toward independence after she realises how others have made decisions for her, throughout her life.
Shershaah is a 2021 Bollywood biographical drama directed by Vishnu Vardhan. The film stars Sidharth Malhotra and Kiara Advani in the lead roles. The film is based on the life of Captain Vikram Batra, an officer of the Indian Army and how he sacrifices his life for his country. With romance and patriotism in the right measures, the movie won many hearts. The sound direction and cinematography of the film were also worth praise.