Bollywood 2010

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By For the annual wrap-up we have kept it simple - our favourite 10 releases of the year Who would you add to this list? Tell
  • Published 30.12.10


Naseeruddin Shah and Arshad Warsi in love and lust with the sexy and scheming Vidya Balan brought heartland quirk back to the movies. Helmed by first-timer Abhishek Chaubey, Ishqiya was easily the edgiest film of the year that could change mood and tone at will. And there was Dil toh bachcha hai ji...

Once Upon A time in Mumbaai

Retro rocked long and hard as Milan Luthria turned back the clock to the 1970s and retold the story of Haji Mastan and Dawood Ibrahim. An intense Ajay Devgn and a kickass Pritam score made the Ekta Kapoor production a mast watch.

Peepli live

People queued up in numbers to watch a film on farmer suicides. That’s the power of producer Aamir Khan. But that’s not why we love Anusha Rizvi’s first film. It’s the movie’s wit, courage and minimalism that bowled us over.


In a year when the biggies fell flat on their faces, Prakash Jha made the most of his large canvas, blending the father-son powerplay of The Godfather with the twisted ties of Mahabharata. The result? A political epic with a powerhouse Ranbir Kapoor performance. Plus, Nana Patekar.

My Name Is Khan

When the other Khans chose to play safe and go bang bang at the box office, Shah Rukh got his director friend Karan Johar to use his star status and make a big-budget film on religious tolerance. King Khan topped it up with his career-best act as an Asperger syndrome patient wanting to do things right. And we can never have enough of the SRK-Kajol magic. Never.

Band Baaja Baaraat

Yash Raj Films had forgotten to make the simple boy-girl love story for years and it needed two first-timers (director Maneesh Sharma and hero Ranveer Singh) and a no-holds-barred Anushka Sharma to bring the namak back to Bollywood’s ishq vishk pyaar vyaar menu.


Love sex aur dhokha

Everyone claims to be making a hatke film, but Dibakar Banerjee actually went ahead and made one. A handycam take on three stories about love, sex and betrayal, it was an experiment which worked without a tar and drew audiences forits sheer audacity.



A film with two new kids plus Ronit Roy and Ram Kapoor needed seven years to get done but that no compromises were made showed in every frame of the gem. The Vikramaditya Motwane film also proved that a Cannes contestant can create a moving movie experience without pretentious gyan.


He had famously told t2 in late 2009 that he just needed to come and stand in the frame. But Salman Khan as Chulbul Pandey didn’t stop at that. In a mad-mad-mad performance, Sallu Miyan took us all on aroller-coaster ride and rocked the box office like never before. Munni became badnaam and paisa vasool got a new synonym — Dabangg!

Do dooni Chaar

Three decades back they were the toast of cinegoers. Thirty years on, little has changed about Rishi Kapoor and Neetu Singh, a few extra kilos apart. Today’s audience would rather see their son, but we loved the adorable jodi that made Habib Faisal’s directorial debut the most feel-good movie of the year.

bhula diya (Anjaana anjaani)

Vishal-Shekhar helmed almost all the young rom coms this year and while it was difficult to tell one soundtrack from another, they did deliver the hits. The Ranbir-Priyanka film had this Mohit Chauhan-Shruti Pathak number that was a plaintive cry from a broken heart.



gal meethi meethi bol (Aisha)

Amit Trivedi has single-handedly changed the sound of Bollywood. First Aamir and Dev D and this year Aisha and Udaan. While Aisha’s title track was groovy and fun, this one sung by Toshi Sabri and written by Javed Akhtar brought the house down.


Ainvayi Ainvayi (Band Baaja Baaraat)

Salim-Sulaiman, quiet for some time, returned to Punjabi roots — after Chak De! India and Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi — and delivered a boisterous album. Buoyed by the lead pair’s youthful energy, this one really got the feet moving.


Dil toh bachcha hai ji (Ishqiya)

Vishal Bhardwaj and Gulzar come together to create magic again as Rahat Fateh Ali Khan gave voice to the ageless pangs of the human heart. The song became big enough for Madhur Bhandarkar to name his first comedy after the song.

tere naina (my name is khan)

After quite a few pedestrian soundtracks, Shankar Ehsaan Loy hit the right notes with this Karan Johar biggie. Sajda and Noor-e-Khuda were both soulful but we are going with Shafqat Amanat Ali’s lovely little ditty that re-ignited the SRK-Kajol magic.


des mera rangrez (Peepli Live)

An Indian Ocean song in a Bollywood film — yes, that’s how far we have come. Aamir Khan and Anusha Rizvi made it possible in this farmer suicide film. With its anthemic feel and engaging tone, the song almost became a character in the movie.

Zor Ka jhatka (action replayy)

Okay, this one’s supposedly stitched together by Pritam from a couple of Assamese folk songs (he also credits them vaguely) but you cannot deny the zor in this jhatka. Now the name of Shah Rukh’s new TV game show, Daler Mehndi and Richa Sharma rocked this one.

Bin tere (I Hate Luv Storys)

Shafqat Amanat Ali’s very hatke vocal chords make this Vishal-Shekhar track stand out from the album. Sunidhi Chauhan would arrive later and make this lost-in-love song even more moving. Imran and Sonam lip-syncing on screen helped.

Mere Khuda (Prince)

The less said about this Vivek Oberoi film the better but it did have a couple of infectious tracks. Sachin Gupta is the name of the composer and he really soared with this theme number, sung by Atif Aslam the way only he can.



Ranjha Ranjha (Raavan)

A.R. Rahman really had an off year in Mumbai — his 127 Hours score is creating waves abroad — but Raavan had this incredibly zesty track by Rekha Bhardwaj that almost made up for his lack of form. It helped that Aishwarya at her most sublime was on screen.


Uff teri Ada (Karthik Calling Karthik)

The song that made lounges and discos go crazy. The Shankar Ehsaan Loy track was a delicious mix of Indian and Western rhythms. And Deepika Padukone has never looked hotter or Farhan Akhtar cuter.



Sheila Ki Jawaani (Tees Maar Khan)

Well, what does one say about a song which is forcing people to go and watch a film? In fact, there are guys who are coming in, watching the song and exiting the hall. The culprits? Vishal-Shekhar, Sunidhi Chauhan, Farah Khan AND Katrina Kaif.

Adhoore (Break Ke Baad)

Another rom com. Another Vishal-Shekhar score. Another set of noisy ballads. But there was this one radiant foot-tapping number which almost became the theme song. Alyssa Mendonca’s electronic vocals really made Adhoore irresistible.


azaadiyan (Udaan)

A film like Udaan didn’t really need songs to express emotions but director Vikramaditya Motwane couldn’t imagine making his first Hindi film without songs. So Amit Trivedi delivered a very wordy soundtrack. This one about the I-want-to-break-free feeling was top notch.


Pee Loon (Once Upon A Time In Mumbaai)

Pritam had a lot of tracks this year and not all of them were good. This soundtrack was a mast mix of retro and now, comprising everything from item songs to ballads. Again, Mohit Chauhan delivered the best song of the album for Pritam. Soft and sweet.


Neeyat (teen Patti)

This was the one chartbuster item song that couldn’t make the film a blockbuster. But you cannot deny the adrenaline (read testosterone) rush of the song, rendered by Sunidhi Chauhan and set ablaze by bodacious Brazilian model Maria Gomez.


Tera zikr (Guzaarish)

We would wonder what happened to Ismail Darbar and Monty after Devdas and Saawariya. Guzaarish answered the question. It was Bhansali the musical genius at work always and here he finally helmed the soundtrack. With beautiful results. This song by Shail Hada was all soul.

Mann Lafanga (Lafangey Parindey)

There’s something about Mohit Chauhan’s voice that makes every song count. This one, composed by R. Anandh, had brilliant wordplay by Swanand Kirkire and was the best thing about this Pradeep Sarkar film.


Munni Badnaam (Dabangg)

The best item song of the year. Hands down (or up in the air). Even if not the most original song of the year. Sung by little-known Mamta Sharma and Aishwarya, the Malaika Arora-sizzler had a rustic charm that brought back naughty memories of Beedi jalai le.




He did the unthinkable — got himself a Yash Raj Films solo-hero launch and then made it count. The most real and refreshing debut in a long time, Ranveer was a complete natural as the easy-going Bittoo Sharma in Band Baaja Baaraat. And he is also one half of the Bolly kiss of the year.


Anusha rizvi

She may have disowned the film now but we all know that she did direct Peepli Live. Even without Aamir Khan’s marketing muscle, the film dealing with farmer suicides was a telling clutter-breaker.



RAJat Barmecha and Vikramaditya Motwane

The partners in this year’sbrightest film and the new faces of independent Hindi cinema. Backed by the enfant terrible, Anurag Kashyap, Motwane directed this cracker of a coming-of-age film, sensitively portrayed by Barmecha.

We Cannes sure do it!


Abhinav Kashyap

Did you know that Anurag Kashyap’s younger brother wanted to make Dabangg with Irrfan Khan as Chulbul Pandey — and some say he still wants to make that film. What matters is that he delivered one of the biggest Bolly hits of all time.


Abhishek Chaubey

Many believe that producer Vishal Bhardwaj made Ishqiya but that’s not true. It’s this strapping 33-year-old who cooked up the delicious yarn about two thieves on the run and a desi femme fatale.



Sonakshi sinHa

We would always hear about Luv and Kush Sinha getting ready to say “khamosh” to Bollywood but this Shotgun progeny arrived from nowhere and boy, did she fire. The refreshingly curvy and remarkably dabangg (fearless) Sonakshi brought back the nazakat of the good ol’ heroine. We want more.


Habib Faisal

Arguably the creative revelation of the year, the man wrote and directed Do Dooni Chaar and also scripted Band Baaja Baaraat. In a year where Bolly was predominantly plastic, the 44-year-old brought a reality check to the movies.