Watching the beautifully shot, measured and thoughtful With You, Without You recently was very enjoyable.
But, as much as I enjoy the less-travelled roads of South Asian cinema, I do sometimes wish Channel 4 would show more of the films that get a mention on Love Bollywood on a Saturday morning.
So I’m particularly looking forward to the next instalment of Channel 4’s current Autumn Bollywood season, which will feature Sridevi in English Vinglish, Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani with Ranbir Kapoor and Deepika Padukone and two other interesting-sounding recent films.
Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani sounds like it will be an enjoyable, though perhaps unsurprising, coming-of-age romantic comedy film. Given that it’s produced by Karan Johar, ‘glossily-polished’ is likely to be the order of the day – no bad thing in my book, as I’m a sucker for the likes of Kal Ho Naa Ho and even Ek Main Aur Ekk Tu and I Hate Luv Storys.
Meanwhile, English Vinglish – staring Sridevi in a comeback role as a housewife who enrolls in an English-speaking course to stop her husband and daughter mocking her lack of language skills – looks set to tick the ‘heart-warming’ box. I’ve already enjoyed the soundtrack on our last flight to India and love seeing how songs I know are picturised when I see their film for the first time (though sadly Prince, whose soundtrack is great but whose movie was anything but, is a notable exception).
Less heart-warming will probably the dark thriller B.A. Pass. The 2012 centres on a student forced to compromise his morals in order to try to save his and his sister’s futures by becoming something of a gigolo. Echoes here of Vicky Doner, released in the same year with a similarly risqué plot.
And then we may be back in more familiar Bollywood territory with the 2013 romantic period drama Lootera, staring Ranveer Singh and Sonakshi Sinha.