Random Tuesday Discussion Post: Overrated and Underrated Actors/Films

I am pretty sure YRF has arranged things so that no news breaks except for the Thugs posters.  But I am sick of talking about the Thugs posters!  And there’s no other news!  So I have to fall back on discussion posts.  Oh well, I always really enjoy talking to you all, hopefully you enjoy talking to me too.

This is a question Anonymous asked me on Monday, and I wanted to make it the Wednesday discussion question, but then I thought of another question instead and didn’t have a place for it.  So, here!  A fun thing to discuss on a Tuesday!

Question: What do you think are the most overrated/underrated films and/or actors in Indian film?  Any industry is allowed.

Here’s my answer from Monday:

I think Ranbir is probably the most overrated actor in Hindi film. For underrated, I think Amit Sadh. It’s a hard question, especially the “underrated”, because of course if they are underrated I don’t even know about them!

In terms of films, the nice thing is that overhyped movies tend to fade away quickly. So 15 years ago I would have said Bhansali’s Devdas, but now that has slipped down to a more reasonable level than it held then. As of right now, Sanju is definitely the most overhyped. But I have faith that within a few years it will be forgotten and we can all move on. Same goes for underhyped films, most of them end up finding their place as time goes on. Right now I think A Gentleman is the winner, but since the success of Stree I am sure people will start discovering it and it won’t be underhyped for long.

(How can you not like this movie????)

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25 thoughts on “Random Tuesday Discussion Post: Overrated and Underrated Actors/Films

  1. The Baazaar trailer is out and it looks surprisingly good. Definitely a Wall Street type movie. Saif, yet again, is proving that he’s one of the few older stars who’s willing to try different things. The new guy seems promising and it looks like good roles for both Apte and Singh (the latter isn’t in enough).

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    • For underhyped film, I would pick Daawat-E-Ishq or D-Day or Saawariya. For overrated, I might pick Devdas or Bajirao Mastani possibly or Paa or Fan.

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      • I might have missed a category, there’s also the problem of “hyped but in the wrong way”. I would put Fan and Daawat E Ishq in that category, Fan sold as a big crowd pleasing SRK film when the same amount of effort could have sold it as a ground breaking out their film experiment. And Daawat E Ishq was sold as a big fun light romance, but the same amount of effort could have sold it as a slightly off beat female focused story.

        But all your other choices, especially D-Day, DEFINITELY!!!! I remember when D-Day came out, the critics were in raptures but I had never heard of the film before I read the reviews. Somehow it sneaked out without anyone talking about it, and then the good reviews couldn’t catch up with the low visibility and it flopped. If only it were released now, when word of mouth and reviewers are so much more powerful!

        On Tue, Sep 25, 2018 at 7:49 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  2. Agree with you about Ranbir – talented but does always the same roles.
    Alia is the most overated actress – she is not bad, can be better in future but she is not the more talented, not the most beautiful and not the most “deserving” actress for sure.
    Overated movie – Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani, I really don’t know why people liked this movie
    Underrated – Vikrant Massey, he is soooo good, bu I don’t see him getting new movies. Don’t know why.

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    • Well there, we have found something Ranbir and Alia have in common that explains their relationship! Also, like Priya losing out on her Ranveer-Dips wedding invite, I think you have just lost out on a potential Ranbir-Alia wedding invite.

      Personally I love YJHD, at least I really liked it when I first saw it. But I am surprised by how little I think of it as time goes by, and how little it comes up in discussion. So I guess it is one of those overrated movies that settled to a reasonable level as time went on, and this time I fell for it along with everyone else.

      Vikrant Massay was just announced for a web series, which in America would be the deathknell of his career, but in India seems like a potential stepping stone. Oh, and he’s going to be in Mental Hai Kya! If that ever comes out.

      On Tue, Sep 25, 2018 at 11:36 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • In Mental Hai Kya Vikrant will play only secondary role to two very good and appreciated actors so I’m not sure if it will be a good thing for his career. He needs main role asap.
        And for Ranalia wedding, I am sure I would not be able to stand Rishi, Ranbir and Karan in one room for hours, so good for me 😆 (sorry for switching between my accounts all the time today)

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        • Maybe you could crash the Ranalia wedding, make a big stink, and then leave? Since apparently everyone has to get married in Italy now, you are our best bet for a wedding crasher. Oh oh! Track down Farhan and make him write Don 3! There’s a worthy wedding goal.

          On Tue, Sep 25, 2018 at 12:07 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • Kiara Advani also got the luxury of taking her time before having the focus so much on her. Smaller roles in big films, working her way up to being the next big thing.

        On Wed, Sep 26, 2018 at 2:18 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  3. I am defining overrated and underrated as hits or flops respectively. In my opinion the most overrated film recently is Paadmavat. I completely agree that Daawat-e-Ishq and A Gentleman are underrated. In addition my choices for underrated films would be Akash Vaani (that end confrontation scene is perfection) and Ok Jaanu (I loved the chemistry between Aditya and Shraddha and Naseeruddin Shah and Leela Samson). Also, agree with others that Ranbhir is overrated.

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    • I really have to track down a copy of Akash-Vaani!!!! You are just confirming my impression from having seen only the final confrontation scene and nothing else.

      On Tue, Sep 25, 2018 at 5:21 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  4. Severely underrated – ARK, Vikrant Massey. (He did a web series already, a you tube series called Ride (I think), which came out after DitG.)

    Underrated – Akshay Khanna, Sonakshi, Swara, Rishi.

    Overrated – Aamir, SRK, Ranbir, Alia, Deepika, Dulquer, Radhika (just barely), Abhishek.

    Severely overrated – Sid Malhotra

    Rightrated – Saif, Akshay, Ranveer, Salman, Irrfan, Tapsee, Vicky, Pankaj T, Seema P, Amitabh, Kareena

    My guidelines – how large is the delta between the promise/branding and the outcome, and in which direction. I’m factoring in both the deltas of (expected) acting ability and (expected) box office draw. Whether I like them and how much I do has no intended bearing on my rating.

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    • I love this comment! So much to chew over. I think I agree with almost all, there are just a few I would quibble with.

      Severely Underrated: Agree! Except I wouldn’t put ARK quite so underrated. Maybe more like “moderately severely underrated”. Mostly because I suffered through Fitoor which confirmed both that he had his chance to headline a big budget big deal film, and that he didn’t have quite enough talent/skill to do it. Remove Fitoor from his list, and yes absolutely. But with it there, I would say he is currently underrated but his average evens out.

      Underrated: Rishi? Really? I can see him having been underrated for most of his career, but I think now he has kind of leveled out, respected character actor and top of the poster in some of his films. Akshaye, that’s a hard one, because he kind of lowered his own rating, you know? Removing himself from the public eye and choosing to be a character actor instead of a headliner. But I agree he is still underrated, no one seems to release how much he contributed to films like Ittefaq or Mom both in making it a better picture and raising the box office.

      Overrated: So glad you brought up Radhike!!!! I didn’t want to be the first, because I wasn’t really sure of myself. She is very very talented, but then I look at her in Sacred Games compared with that master cast and I think “is she really all that everyone says she is?”

      Severely Overrated: So mean! Poor lonely Sid all by himself. anyway, you were combining branding and box office, right? With Sid, I feel like branding is only a slight exaggeration (he’s not talking about himself or being talked about as either a great actor or the next big thing), but the box office is a massive miscalculation. So many movies that are released relying on him to carry the box office, and he just can’t. Oh, and so Sid isn’t so lonely, and along the same lines of “branding isn’t as bad, but box office is very wrong”, I would also suggest Shraddha here.

      I am fascinated that you put Salman, alone of all the Khans, in the right-rated area. I think I can see your reasoning, he is never regarded as a Great Actor or a Great Thinker or an Ambassador to India or any of that. And his box office is very reliable and clearly just related to him. However, I would say he may be slipping out of that “right-rated” area based on box office alone after the massive failure of his last two films. Agree about the other two Khans by the way. Shahrukh is overrated right now for box office (as I said in that post comparing him with Virat Kohli). And Aamir is overrated as an actor and to some degree as a box office magician. They are both very very good, but their ratings are even higher.

      On Tue, Sep 25, 2018 at 6:22 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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      • Don’t get me wrong, I love having Radhika on my screen, and I’m so so glad that such a dusky earthy woman, esp one who isn’t relying on glamour, is getting such top roles. The last woman like this would prob be Nandita Das or perhaps the woman from Salman’s Tere Naam, or most famously, Smita Patil.

        But she’s like the parallel actress version of Alia. The two of them are landing all the roles in their respective spheres. Too much too soon. Overexposure. Leaving few roles for their competition to scramble over. And leaving themselves wide open for criticism.
        Now that she’s leveled up a bit and gained name recognition, I want to see her follow RRao’s lead and do only roles where she can shine or add value. Her early work was like this. I guess it’s a problem for actresses because there aren’t as many good roles available to them.

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        • It feels like just a failure of imagination on the part of producers/casting directors. With both Alia and Radhike. A little more effort, a little more outside the box thinking, and there could have been a different actress in loads of the roles they ended up with. I’m not going to say Alia or Radhike should start turning down parts they want, but maybe producers should start thinking outside the box about the actresses on their list.

          I’ve never seen Radhike give a bad performance, but there were some roles (like in Kabali) where I thought “this is the perfect actress for this part and she is doing a wonderful job” and then there were other parts (like in Sacred Games) where I thought “she is okay, but I wonder if there might be someone else in the world who could be even better?” I feel the same about Alia, Highway was the perfect role for her and the Ki Dulhania series and a few others. But 2 States, Raazi, Dear Zindagi, she was good but someone else out there might have been better.

          On Tue, Sep 25, 2018 at 11:44 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  5. I feel like there are a lot of actors who are underrated, as in they are good character actors and only rarely do they get a chance to really do their stuff in a larger or more complex part. Such is the nature of character acting, but Manoj and Nawaz seem to have escaped this (after slogging away for a while). I would like to see more of Kay Kay Menon, Adil Hussein, and Shefali Shah, for starters.

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    • I would add Atul Agnihotri. I think he has a booming career in the Marathi industry, but every time I see him show up in a Hindi movie I get excited and want more.

      On Wed, Sep 26, 2018 at 10:31 PM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  6. I agree with you on Ranbir being overrated, he’s playing the same man child roles since the beginning of his career and there is hardly anything new from him. Talented? Yes. I just wish he played more diverse roles. I don’t want to blame writers and filmmakers for a possible typecast. Surely there would be filmmakers who wanted to cast him in different roles.

    Overrated actress, well for me, it is Taapsee Pannu. She is a wonderful artist, very confident in what she does. But, I do have issues with her performances, especially in the recent releases including Mulk. I am finding her repetitive. Feel free to disagree with me, though.

    Underrated actors, Ayushmann Khurana. Randeep Hooda too, sometimes. In the actresses, I find Radhika Apte underrated. She has got great exposure in the recent times, but I hardly see her getting roles which demand her to do anything more than keeping a puzzled face with a perennial “what?” kinda expression.

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    • I wasn’t sure about Taapsee myself for similar reasons, but she really impressed me in Manmarziyaan, and it wasn’t exactly the same role she has played before. Similar character, but she found a new way to play it.

      On Thu, Sep 27, 2018 at 2:02 AM dontcallitbollywood wrote:

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  7. Lol I find Salman to be extremely overrated and don’t find him to be a good actor at all, always doing the same masala type roles. I also find Varun, tiger, Arjun etc and all these star kids who are so mediocre to be overrated when you have Vckey kaushal and vidyut who are talented but don’t get the recognition they deserve.

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