Great movies of 2009

I considered and quickly discarded the idea of making a top 10 list for 2009 because so many people already made them and I didn’t think they would be any different from mine. But after going through some of them, I felt that a couple of very deserving movies were left out of all lists. And not to mention, most of the lists concentrate on hindi movies exclusively. So here is Bombay Cinephile’s top movies of the year in the order of their release

Revolutionary Road – A wonderful tragic story of a suburban couple who couldn’t come to terms with an ordinary life and yearned for something special. Director – Sam Mendes

Gulaal – Raw, gritty and dark story of student politics in Rajasthan – and an innocent student caught in this vortex. Director – Anurag Kashyap

Firaaq – A sensitive, non-political take on Gujarat riots which somehow seemed to have slipped under everybody’s radar. Definitely a must-watch for its poignant portrayal of how every side only loses. Director – Nandita Das

99 – Another movie which everyone seems to have forgotten about. A superb gangster caper with really wacko characters and hilariously funny sequences – named so because all characters seem to fall short of a century in real life. NRI directors Raj Nidimoru and DK Krishna

The Hangover – The movie has already become a cult movie, so not much to say which hasn’t been already said.

Sankat City – Another gangster caper which outshines Kaminey by a fair margin (though Shahid Kapur’s acting is really something). Great combination of good acting and imaginative wackos. Director – Pankaj Advani

Waltz with Bashir – A graphic novel about Israeli director Ari Folman’s effort to exorcise the demons of his past – his part in the Israel Lebanon war in 1982 – and the events of Shatila massacre.

District 9 – Fabulous sci-fi movie about aliens that land on earth – and are confined to a ghetto called District 9. Its setting in Johannesburg and gritty documentary style elevates it to an absolute must-watch. The movie also subtly raises questions about racism and apartheid.

Inglorious Basterds – Quentin Tarantino’s brilliant movie about a group of renegade Jew soldiers who paradrop themselves in German occupied territories to sabotage German military and execute mayhem.

Rocket Singh – A realistic look at a salesman’s world – especially how contrary it is to honesty and ideals. Ranbir Kapoor confirms his superstar status in a no-frills role and a superb support cast make it one of the most refreshing movies to come out of Bollywood. Director – Shimit Amin

3 Idiots – Finally Bollywood’s biggest grosser of the year. It’s a little preachy, and the makers have done a little injustice to Chetan Bhagat, but nothing can take away the fact that its a very enjoyable and heart-warming movie. A great way to end 2009. Director – Rajkumar Hirani

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Educated Illiterate said...

Just a thought. While I really liked all the movies you mentioned (although there is good reason why some of those movies didn't make it to any best list), both Revolutionary Road and Waltz with Bashir were released in 2008. That's probably why they weren't there in the list.

Pradosh said...

I agree about them worldwide releasing in 2008 part. But then in India, their theatrical release was in 2009, thats all