Follow up to my Rom-Com post! And one I actually feel more deeply about, there are a lot of great clever action films out there that don’t get attention while big stupid ones do, a much bigger problem with action than in the rom-com genre.
With action movies, there tends to be a lot of focus on the big serious overwrought ones with dark lighting and “realistic” fight scenes and statements about Indian society and tormented heroes and so on. Or else on the action movies with the really top stars and the fanboys who cheer and cheer. But what about the little fun light action movies? The ones without the huge stakes and dramatic patriotism, or the big stars? They tend to be forgotten even though, most of the time, they are way more fun and inventive than the others.
A Gentleman : My favorite favorite favorite movie of 2017. It is just freakishly clever, so funny I never stop laughing unless it is to throw in an “AWESOME!” at one of the fight moves. It takes the whole idea of the perfect action hero and turns it upside down, at the same time as making fun of NRIs, Florida, and karaoke work events.
(Also has the most catchy song used for promotions)
Action Jackson : This one had a semi-big name star, Ajay Devgn, but somehow was just a little too odd to be a big mainstream hit, or popular with the fanboys. But, it’s brilliantly crazy! Like a manga crossed with a Tarentino movie crossed with a 1970s silly thriller. Ajay fights shirtless with a samurai sword, how can you not love this movie?
Akira : This is such a simple and wonderful concept. A remake of a southern action movie by the same director as the original, everything the same except that the genders are flipped. The troubled silent violence prone hero is a heroine, so is the campus bully she defeats, so is the honest cop who is the only one who believes her. And the silently supportive love interest is a man.
Bang Bang : A Gentleman was my favorite movie of 2017, but Bang Bang was easily my favorite film of 2014. Silly and delightful with the best songs and the stupidest plot, and some amazingly delightfully impractical fight scenes (barefooted waterskiing behind a plane? Yep, that happens!)
Byomkesh Bakshy! : This is a legitimately great movie. Not just a great-fun movie, but actually good. Only no one besides me seems to have seen or appreciated it, so I am putting it on this list just to try to make you watch it. A period film that really digs into the complications of India during WWII, gives you a feel for period Calcutta, has a perfect cast of people you’ve never heard of, plus Sushant Singh Rajput.
Dishoom : The top player of the Indian Cricket team is kidnapped in Dubai! Hero cop John Abraham is partnered up with inexperienced local cop Varun Dhawan! Will they solve the case before the big India-Pakistan game??? Also, Akshaye Khanna is there.
(Also, there’s a dog)
Dus : Oh the early 2000s!!!! Abhishek was cool, Zayed Khan was still working, Esha Deol was too, and Suniel Shetty was hot. Okay, that last isn’t just an early 2000s thing, it’s just a fact of life. Also, Sanjay Dutt is there as the grizzled head of the team, and Shilpa Shetty as the tough cool girl member. Don’t bother following the plot, just enjoy the car chases and sexy item numbers and cast of many.
Flying Jatt : How is the most enjoyable Tiger Shroff movie also the least successful one? I have seen a scarily large number of Tiger Shroff movies, and they are generally enjoyable, but this is the only one I would actually want to watch a second time. He’s a superhero with a costume and a secret identity and the power of flight, but he is still afraid of his Punjabi mother, and also heights. So he only flies 4 feet off the ground.
R…Rajkumar : I really shouldn’t like this one as much as a do. Crazy regressive romance, amoral hero, and an ending fight/song scene that lasts way to long, and yet something about the chemistry of tiny scrappy fighter Shahid Kapoor falling for gorgeous trapped-in-a-wealthy-family Sonakshi Sinha, plus Sonu Sood wandering around being crazy evil, it just makes me happy!