Comedy has been a part of our movies forever. What was initially used to induce humor, and provide relief has grown into such a big and diverse genre with sub genres and the like.
Initially movies were not comedies, but they were comedic actors, whose sole role in the movie was to present comic relief. We have seen many stalwarts fill this role – Keshto Mukherjee, Johnny Walker, Mehmood, Johnny Lever, Ashok Saraf and Lakshimkant Berde. All these were stalwarts, in the sence of comedy and comedic timing. Though the comedian still played a very important role until the 90’s there was a very important shift during that time.
To me the shift came with movies like Andaz Apana Apna releasing. That is when the content was comedy and the hero was the comedian. There was no actually need for comedians to essay these roles, because the hero and his friend did a wonderful job themselves. Andaz Apna Apna was not really successful at the box office, but it is a cult classic for the lovers of this genre.
Slowly there were movies being made that showcased more and more slapstick comedy and the hero had no qualms play the roles these movies offered. Chunky Pandey, Govinda, Salman Khan and so many others, made this genre of mindless funny cinema a success.
As the leave your brains at home movies were enjoying success, another genre was slowly being created – that of situational comedy. Again the baton of the funny fire was in the hero’s hands and this time, it was hilarious if you applied your brains. Hera Pheri was once such kind of movie, actually most of Priyadarshan directed movies during the 2000’s, fell in this category.
Bollywood has experimented with a lot of sub genres of comedy – Dark Comedy and Satire but they are small experiments that have yielded results like Khosla ka Ghosla and Bheja Fry. Other then the ones mentioned, some of my favourite funny movies are – Jaane Bhi Do Yaroon, Chachi 420 (which was the Bollywood remake of Mrs. Doubtfire), Hey Baby, Bhool Bhulaiya, Bade Miyaan Chote Miyan, and Golmaal (yes the very same leave your brains at home and watch ones) and most of the David Dhawan – Govinda collaborations (they are my guilty pleasure).
Comedy as a genre has a long way to go and grow and I am looking forward to the journey. Let me know your favourite comedy movies in the comments below.
I am doing this A to Z Challenge in collaboration with Chandni Moudgil of Life In Third Dimension, where she will be speaking of women in contemporary cinema. Between us we are going to cover Bollywood movies that were powerful enough to shape our generation.
Every day I will be sharing other blogs that I find interesting throughout this challenge. Here are today’s recommendations.
This minimalist fiction project by Sreesha, will capture more than just your attention.