Game-changers? May be not. Conversation starters? For sure. The six Hindi films that you wouldn’t want to miss in 2018 will definitely spark excitement all around. Thematically, they range from a combative Urdu writer who went for the jugular to an astronaut who zooms all the way to the moon, from a Mumbai boy who raps his way to fame to an ordinary Kashmiri girl who became a daring spy. Here they are:
Actor-turned-director Nandita Das’ sophomore effort has Nawazuddin Siddiqui in the role of the iconic chronicler of the horrors of Partition. The film promises to be a powerful document of, and a tribute to, the life of a writer who pulled no punches in laying bare the repercussions of religious hate and political myopia. Manto, currently in post-production, also has the talented Rasika Dugal portraying Manto’s wife.
Coming off the critical and commercial success of Talvar, Meghna Gulzar is ready with this intriguing period espionage drama. Raazi, one of the most anticipated films of 2018, is a screen adaptation of former Indian Navy officer Harinder S. Sikka’s novel Calling Sehmat. It presents an account of the real-life adventures of a Kashmiri Muslim girl who, during the course of the 1971 war, married a Pakistani man in order to spy for India. Alia Bhatt plays the female lead in a cast that includes Vicky Kaushal (Masaan, Zubaan).
This Zoya Akhtar-directed film hasn’t gone on the floors yet, but it is already creating a buzz. To be bankrolled by Excel Entertainment, Gully Boy will see Ranveer Singh and Alia Bhatt team up on the screen in a story that delves into the underground hip-hop scene in Mumbai. It hinges on a boy (played of course by the mercurial Ranveer Singh) who rises from the slums of the big city to become a rapper ready to take on the world. Alia Bhatt will be the icing on this appetizing cake.
CHANDA MAMA DOOR KE
Among the most ambitious Hindi films being readied for release in 2018 is the sci-fi space fantasy Chanda Mama Door Ke, directed by Sanjay Puran Singh Chauhan. In the film’s fictionalized story, which draws inspiration from facts about India’s official space programme, an Indian eventually lands on the moon. The new film, scheduled for a Republic Day release, is top-lined by Sushant Singh Rajput in the role of a path-breaking astronaut. Chanda Mama Door Ke also stars R. Madhavan, Shraddha Kapoor and Bhumi Pednekar.
At the core of Rajkumar Gupta’s Raid dramatizes an income-tax department operation in Uttar Pradesh in the 1980s. A period drama derived from real incidents, it is among a whole lot of other films that are being currently shot in India’s largest state. Scripted by Ritesh Shah (Pink, Airlift), Raid is reportedly about one of most high-profile tax raids ever conducted in the country. Ajay Devgan and Ileana D’Cruz are in the lead roles.
Reema Kagti’s Gold, an Akshay Kumar starrer in which a glittering piece of Indian sporting history will receive welcome cinematic treatment. The film, to be released on August 15, has the actor essaying the role of the legendary hockey player Balbir Singh Sr., who was an integral part of the team that, in 1948, won India its first Olympic gold medal after Independence.