Bollywood loves its songs, dance and drama. And what better way to show all that than in a movie revolving around marriages. Indian weddings are sometimes week-long affairs and of late the extravagance
We present 7 films which marched to the tune of marriage band all the way to bank…
Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge (1995)
Director: Aditya Chopra
Star Cast: Shah Rukh Khan, Kajol, Amrish Puri and Anupam Kher.
It was a romantic comedy which defined a generation. 23 years have gone by from the release of this classic but the charm of Shah Rukh Khan as Raj Malhotra and Amrish Puri’s wrath playing Bauji have stood the test of time. The film fulfilled every possible cliché in the Bollywood handbook i.e A man named Raj falls for a woman named Simran, whose father is an extreme orthodox. He obviously doesn’t approve of this relationship and arranges for a marriage with someone else. Raj tries his best to win her back by winning the heart of her family during the pre-marriage ceremonies. This all leads up to a dramatic climax in which Amrish Puri finally agrees to his daughter’s wishes and true love prevails. “It says that it is cool to be Raj and Simran while maintaining our Indianness and culture,” actor Shah Rukh Khan said for the film’s climax. Although there were many cliches, the film showed a love story which Bollywood had rarely seen. Usually, when the parents are against a relationship, we see the couple running off from home and getting married. But, Raj wasn’t like everyone else. He wanted to ensure that Simran’s parents willingly and happily hand their daughter to him. This movie is also regarded as a major turning point for Shah Rukh Khan’s career. Although, Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol’s have acted together many a times afterwards their chemistry in Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge is considered their best on screen pairing ever.
Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! (1994)
Director: Sooraj R Barjatya
Star Cast: Salman Khan, Madhuri Dixit, Mohnish Bahl, Renuka Shahane and Anupam Kher.
Any list about Bollywood weddings is incomplete without mentioning Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! The family saga went on to be one of the biggest blockbusters in the history of Indian cinema. In the film, Salman Khan and Mohnish Bahl play two brothers named Prem and Rajesh respectively. Rajesh, who is incharge of the family business gets married to Pooja (Renuka Shahane), daughter of their uncle Kailashnath’s (Alok Nath) friend long time friend. Prem instantly hits it off with Pooja’s little sister, Nisha (Madhuri Dixit). The two grow close during the long-long wedding. Eventually, Prem and Nisha fall in love but keep it a secret. When Pooja finds about them, she promises to get them married. In a sudden of turn of events, she accidentally slips and falls down the stairs, and dies from a head injury. After her sister’s death, Nisha takes good care of her child. Her parents then consider marrying Nisha to Rakesh since she already knows the family well and is good with her sister’s child as well. Nisha overhears her parents talking about this and assumes that they are talking about getting her married to Prem. That is why, she agrees without any hesitation when asked about her decision. Eventually, she realises that her parents were talking about Rajesh not Prem. Prem and Nisha vow to sacrifice their love for the sake of Rajesh and the child. Moments before the wedding, Rajesh comes to know the truth and halts the wedding and gets Nisha and Prem married to each other. In an interview with a leading daily, Sooraj Barjatya spoke about how the films didn’t have a Hero or Heroine like Bollywood films usually do. He said, “When the trial of Hum Aapke Hain Koun..! was going on, there were like 14 songs in the film, and I saw people getting up and walking off. People in the trade were saying things like “Sab Ke Saath Hota Hai” (don’t worry, it happens to everyone). I thought it’s all over. Salim uncle (Salman’s father) called me up and he said cut off two songs. Third day I cut it off and that’s when the collections picked up. There are so many memories of Hum Aapke Hain Koun. After I narrated the film to Salman, he laughed, he continued laughing and saying there are no hero or heroines in HAHK. Everyone is a hero and heroine.” (Sic)
Director: Sooraj R Barjatya
Star Cast: Shahid Kapoor and Amrita Rao
Rajshri took their obsession with weddings to another level by naming their next film Vivah Vivaah was a story of two people from completely different backgrounds coming together. Poonam (Amrita Arora) is from a small town called Madhupur. After the death of her parents at a very young age, she has been living with her uncle Krishnakant (Alok Nath), who is like a father to her. Poonam’s simplicity impresses Bhakti (Manoj Joshi), who laters takes her marriage proposal to Harishchandra (Anupam Kher), for his son Prem (Shahid Kapoor). Initially, Prem is extremely hesitant about this marriage because he feels he is still to young. However, his dad convinces him saying that he should meet Poonam first before taking any decision. Prem and Poonam are instantly attracted to each other and decide to get married.
However, two days before the wedding a fire breaks out at Poonam’s house. Poonam runs inside to save her young cousin and she gets heavily burnt in the process. The doctor informs her father that in such cases, even families disown their own. But, when Prem arrives at the hospital, he is convinced that he wants to marry her despite all the injuries. The two have an informal marriage ceremony before her surgery. In an interview with a leading daily, Sooraj Barjatya was asked if he tried to recreate the vibe of Hum Aapke Hain Koun with Vivah, to which the director replied saying, “No one can do that, not even me. Every project dictates its vision. In Vivah, I intend to look at the sanctity of marital bonding. At 40, I can look at the man-woman relationship with some detachment. Unlike my earlier films, Vivah isn’t about the festivities and celebrations connected with a marriage. It’s about the definitions and dynamics of a marriage. Once that engagement ring is exchanged, you suddenly become so important to someone else. I feel today’s youngsters are losing touch with the beauty and relevance of such a relationship. My film starts with engagement and ends with marriage.”
Band Baaja Baaraat (2010)
Director: Maneesh Sharma
Star Cast: Ranveer Singh and Anushka Sharma.
Band Baaja Baaraat revolves around two individuals who run a wedding planning agency. Bittoo (Ranveer Singh) is pressured by his father to return to his village from Delhi since he felt that he was not doing anything productive. So, he forces Shruti (Anushka Sharma) to make him a partner in her wedding planning venture. Shruti agrees to his proposal and the two form the company named Shaadi Mubarak. The begin with small, low-budget projects and gradually work their way up. They finally get their first big client by stealing them away from Chanda, who is considered a big player. The wedding is a huge success and that night they celebrate, end up drunk and sleep together. Bittto doesn’t put emotional equity in the whole thing and doesn’t want to mix business and pleasure. Shruti pretends to agree with him, but is heartbroken from the inside.
Things take a turn when Shruti tells Bittoo that she is soon getting married to her fiancé, Chetan, and will move to Dubai after the wedding. This makes Bittoo realise that he loved her all along. He confronts Shruti saying he was idiot not to see what was right in front of him. In the end, Shruti gets married to Bittoo and the two are seen dancing at their own wedding to the song Ainvayi ainvayi. With beautiful sets and costumes, Band Baaja Baaraat was a visual delight for the viewer. And watching it, we kind of realised what goes behind the scenes in all those big fat Indian weddings.
Namastey London (2007)
Director: Vipul Amrutlal Shah
Star Cast: Akshay Kumar, Katrina Kaif, Rishi Kapoor, Javed Sheikh and Upen Patel.
Namastey London was a story about the mismatch faced by couples when an NRI boy or a girl get married to someone from India. Real life couples need to overcome the cultural differences in order to make their marriage a success. They need to overlook the differences and focus on making a room in their heart for their spouses, That, at least, was the film’s underlying message. Manohan Malhotra (Rishi Kapoor), an Indian NRI living in London wishes to get his daughter, Jasmeet (Katrina Kaif) married to someone from India. Although, his daughter has no intention of getting married to an Indian guy, as she already likes a British guy named Charlie Brown (Clive Standen). His dad tricks her into believing that they are going to India for a family trip, upon reaching there, he forces her to marry his friend’s son, Arjun Singh (Akshay Kumar). Knowing she doesn’t have a way out, Jasmeet agrees to the wedding but when they return to England, she refuses to recognise her marriage with Arjun as there is no proof of the wedding. A heartbroken Arjun decides to respect her decision despite his genuine love for her. He doesn’t want to force her into a relationship. Arjun stays back in England till her marriage, hoping that she will change her mind and appreciate his feeling for her. Thanks to circumstances, Arjun and Jasmeet begin to grow close. On the day of her wedding, Jasmeet realises she’s begin to love Arjun and decides to run away from her wedding with Charlie Brown. Akshay Kumar’s performance in the film received massive praise from the critics as well as the audience. The highlight of the film was the speech which Akshay Kumar delivers when the father of Charles was stereotyping India by using references like snake charmers and Tandoori Chicken.
Monsoon Wedding (2001)
Director: Mira Nair
Star Cast: Naseeruddin Shah, Lillete Dubey, Shefali Shah, Vasundhara Das and Vijay Raaz.
A story set in the modern upper-middle class of India, where western lifestyle mixes with old traditions, like the arranged wedding young Aditi accepts when she ends the affair with a married TV producer. The groom is an Indian living in Texas, and all relatives from both families, some from distant places like Australia, come to New Delhi during the monsoon season to attend the wedding. The four-day arrangements and celebrations will see clumsy organization, family parties and drama, dangers to the happy end of the wedding and lots of music. However, beneath the Barjatya vibe, there was a dark streak to the film as well. Shefali Shah’s character was molested by her uncle as a kid and she finally finds courage to confront him during the festivities, thankfully earning everyone’s support and finding closure at last.
Prem Ratan Dhan Payo (2015)
Director: Sooraj R. Barjatya
Star Cast: Salman Khan, Sonam Kapoor, Swara Bhaskar and Neil Nitin Mukesh.
In Prem Ratan Dhan Payo, Salman Khan played the dual roles of Yuvraj Vijay Singh, the crown prince of Pritampur and Prem Dilwale, a drama artiste who used his skits to spread love.
Vijay gets engaged to Maithili (Sonam Kapoor), who is a princess belonging to a neighbouring kingdom. Well, if you are a king, you are bound to have enemies. Similarly with Vijay, it was his half brother Ajay (Neil Nitin Mukesh) who wants to kill him and take the crown for himself. He is helped by Vijay’s manager Chirag Singh (Armaan Kohli) for the same. Vijay barely escapes an assassination plan coordinated by Ajay and Chirag but gets badly injured. He’s hidden in a secret chamber maintained by those loyal to him. Vijay’s lookalike Prem, who loves princess Maithili, reaches Pithampur along with his friend Kanhaiya (Deepak Dobriyal). He is spotted at the station by the Security Head of Pithampur Palace, and is taken to Diwan Sahab (Anupam Kher). Diwan Sahab tells Prem to take the place of Vijay until he his condition improves. Their marriage was but a merger of two kingdoms and Maithili’s heart wasn’t set on it. But Prem’s simple nature thaws her icy heart and Maithili actually looks forward to a dream wedding. In between, Prem also reconciles with Vijay’s half sisters and they too look forward to the wedding. Vijay gets well, beats up the baddies and in the end, makes Prem a prince too so he and Maithili can marry. The film ends on a happy note for all concerned.
While promoting the film, Salman Khan spoke at length about how this Prem was different than the other Prems. He said, “The first one is always going to be special, Maine Pyar Kiya. Because that’s THE Prem. Now Sooraj wrote Prem. I play Prem in the movie. Now does Prem make us? Or did we make Prem? We don’t know. I have been accepted as Salman Khan because of Prem, this character that Sooraj wrote for me. Then came Hum Aapke Hain Koun. You know Sooraj just took it to another level of greatness. It is still one of the better films that we have made in our country. And then came Hum Saath-Saath Hain, which was a better film. And then now, we just finished this film, Prem Ratan Dhan Payo. With this film, he has made a really sweet simple film about romance and family values with an incredible amount of entertainment and humor.”