The Rushmore 5 – Okay, let’s go all Awwal Number then…

Awwal Number movies are not bad movies, because if they were, Victory (the Hurmaan Baweja starrer) would surely have been in. And there have been a lot of movies far worse that the ones in the Rushmore. In fact, a criteria is that the movie should be watchable (why, HHH is indeed better than watchable, it’s a nice movie) …. alternately Chain Khuli Ki Main Khuli is an honest attempt, but you cannot sit through the full movie. So what, then, are Awwal number movies? Awwal Number movies are basically …. hmm, ahem…… Awwal Number movies. Nope, cannot explain. Need to watch it to get it.

All Rounder, Patiala House , Hip Hip Hurray , Dil Bole Hadippa.

There you go.

Awwal Number is not even among the Rushmore of Awwal Number movies.
Poor Aamir.


Rushmore – Mati Nandi’s sports novels

1. Aparajito Anando – Melancholy. Vivid. An all-time favourite.

2. Kolaboti – Everybody loves Kolaboti. She’s fun.

3. Shiba’r firey asha – A powerful story of redemption and resurrection.

4. Striker – Is probably the iconic Mati Nandi novel. Prasoon Bhattacharya is inspirational.

The Rushmore 3 – Hindi (Bollywood) movies on Sports

And no, we won’t go all Awwal Number here, I promise. Or rather, I would not go all Awwal Number on you yet ….

So here’s the list:

Iqbal. Chak De! India. Lagaan. Saaheb.

Iqbal – is like a postcard from a faraway land. A beautiful, magical movie. And indeed, if Zaheer can, if Irfan Can, then Iqbal Khan. Heartwarming, joyous. This is Kukunoor’s zenith.

Chak De! India – The mother of all feel-good movies. And the mother of most Bollywood masala movies. And done without any sleaze or soap. Just taut, sharp storytelling. Shahrukh, in one of his best performances, is in his elements here; and the girls are excellent.

Lagaan: Once upon a time in India – If Shahrukh can, how can Aamir not? Chop an hour off the movie, chop two songs off, and this would be in everyone’s top three Bollywood movies of all time. Even as-is, it still is a super, super movie. I remember, in a movie hall in Bangalore a long long time back, half the hall was standing up an screaming ‘Maar Kachra, maar!’. That’s the magic of movies. That’s the magic of cricket.

Saaheb – Old-world Anil Kapoor movie about a footballer (a goalkeeper. How can you make a tragic movie on football with the protagonist being anything but a goalkeeper?) Beautiful songs (some standardfare Amrita Singh song-and-dance routines notwithstanding)… Kya khabar kya pata, one of Kishore Kumar’s best songs, if from this movie. And emotes well all through. However, like in all of her movies, Raakhi speaks in bangla for all her dialogues in this one as well.

What’s your list?

ps: idea inspired from an old facebook status message of Ayan’s.

The Rushmore 2 – Bengal Ranji cricketers

The Rushmore of Bengal Ranji cricketers.

Nirmal Chatterjee ; Pankaj Roy ; Arun Lal ; Sourav Ganguly.

Nirmal Chatterjee – The first great Bengal cricketer.

Pankaj Roy – He was not the alu-bhatey bengal cricketer. A warrior and a bhadralok.

Arun Lal – Brought up in Delhi, Arun Lal brought the cussed determination of his land of origin into Bengal cricket, and ushered the best days for Bengal in Ranji trophy cricket. He was no favourite of Sunny’s, and was too entrenched in Bengal to be a part of the Delhi brigade. Thus he did not play much test cricket in the lobbying, lobbyist late-80’s Indian cricket. He certainly could have, and should have. Bengali? Arun Lal is more bengali than I am.

Sourav Ganguly – Sourav arrived. And football at last became Bengal’s second sport.