On one hand there have been films which were promoted on huge scale and did business of more than 100 crores, there is a flip side to this development as well in the world of Hindi cinema for the year 2012. There were films which were released without much fancy and owing to the innovative nature of the content that they had, they emerged as surprise hits, or rather sleeper hits, i.e. they gained in the footfalls by the word of mouth publicity. 2012 has indeed shown the way that the Indian film viewing public has matured and it is open to embrace content which is ‘zara hat ke’, and it is a morale booster for such film making fraternity to keep on trying to beat the untreated path. One thing that needs to be underlined here is that these films would not have even hit the cinemahalls, and would continue to be a part of the festival circuits were it not for the fact that the production houses of the likes of UTV or the producers of the likes of John Abraham and Akshay Kumar would not have backed them. Here then is a trip down memory lane for such films of 2012.
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PAAN SINGH TOMAR: Tigmanshu Dhulia directed story of a steeple chase runner, played with conviction by Irrfan Khan was among the first such sleeper hits, which made the audience sit up and take notice. It was the first real sports film of India and also looked into the circumstances which force a law abiding citizen to stand against law, without the melodrama associated with the process.
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VICKY DONOR: A topic as contentious and as sperm donation to become a surprise hit, produced by John Abraham, was a pointer to the fact that issues like these if handled with sensitivity can score a hit. It also brought the topic to the centre stage and gave it a legal halo, otherwise languishing in the dark alleys of the cities. It was also the first film where a mother-in-law and daughter in law where shown discussing their problems in the night over a peg or two of rum- a coming of age of relationships as well perhaps.
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ENGLISH VINGLISH: Comeback film of Sridevi, where she shed her glamorous image and adopted the role of a commoner was a hit owing to the fact that it was a call for all the mothers in the family who subsume their identity for the cause of the children and the family to not let their identities be obliterated in the process, and this was the single reason why it emerged as the hit. It also was a case study for women empowerment, of a married woman, who carried on her expertise of vocation to add to the income of family and underlined the fact that if a woman is proficient in an occupation she should define her identity, associated with it and not let it go.
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OMG OH MY GOD!: A subtle blow on the blind idol worship and the scramble to follow various processes advocated by religious gurus to attain success in life, this Akshay Kumar & Paresh Rawal starrer underlined the fact that one should not get blind in following religious beliefs but be rational in his approach towards the existence of super power and his powers to turn the tide in favour of the believers.
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BARFI!: BARFI! was a film where the lead actors Ranbir Kapoor played the role of physically challenged characters and the effortless manner in which they enacted the role was instrumental in making BARFI! a superhit, and it also underlined the fact that one should be empathic in dealing with those who are physically challenged in one form or the other in the society.
May be, 2013 would see more such films and would make the cinematic viewing an exhilarating experience.