ISHAQZAADE, GOW, PAAN SINGH TOMAR – Bollywood goes native in 2012

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If there is one defining motif for 2012 it is the fact that Hindi cinema traveled outside its comfort zone of using the background of Punjab and explored the diverse landscape of the country with a panache and it is those who undertook this experimentation gave a new sense of identity to Hindi cinema. It was more a return of native who reveled in his nativity which endeared the audience, and here are those native films of 2012:

Set in the landscape of Chambal, the story of a steeplechase runner, turned dacoit, it caught the imagination of the public on account of the element of rustiness imbued in it, be it the landscape, the location or the dialogues. It was reportage from the background and audience all over the world lapped it up.

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Badlands of Dhanbad, which were notorious for defining the political dynamics of the late seventies and early eighties of the country formed the content for Anurag Kashyap's epic saga, and the choice of adhering to the local flavor, in terms of dialogues, costumes, etc., all gave it a sense of belonging and injected the element of novelty that made the fans of cinema lap up the movie all over the world. Its dialogue of ''parmission'', or Hum Phirst- Hum phirst endeared the audience.

Shot in the backdrop of eastern Uttar Pradesh, and the nomenclature of Musalla and Mussolini made ISHAQZAADE a roaring hit, as the manner in which the love story was portrayed was depiction of the reality and the flashing of guns at the drop of the hat was the defining motif of the film.

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After a long time Hindi cinema returned to Kolkata, its original birthplace, with all the cultural nuances of Bengal, be it the Dhake saree the rickety ambassador or the ubiquitous Durga Pooja, and of course the first underground metro of the country, and the Bengali mystique, made KAHAANI a super hit film.

Marathi tadka was on display in abundance in both these films and Rani Mukerji and Asin did a competent job in bringing out the chutzpah of a Marathi lady with competent performances.

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Akshay Kumar returned to the native with his first super successful film of 2012 and it was the setting, the dialogue and the ambiance that made it a roaring success.

The year of being native came to an end with a bang with DABANNG-2 where Chulbul Pandey came back to Kanpur to revel in his antics, and made it the most successful film of 2012.

It would be interesting to watch how the native flavor pans out in 2013, but the teasers of KAI PO CHE set in Gujarat and that of BHAAG MILKHA BHAAG in Punjab are a pointer that indeed 2013 would also be as interesting.

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