Happy Diwali: 5 essential Indian films to watch this festive season

Happy Diwali: 5 essential Indian films to watch this festive season


Wondering which movie to watch for Diwali this year? All your questions rest here, as we have selected the 5 best films that make for a heartwarming festive time spent with the family. (Also read: Kareena Kapoor, Saif Ali Khan, Taimur and Jeh kick off Diwali with a messy rangoli and family time. See pics)

Stills from Om Shanti Om, Rocky Aur Rani Ki Prem Kahani and Gamak Ghar.

1. Gamak Ghar: Achal Mishra’s directorial feature Gamak Ghar will take you back to those bittersweet days of childhood, when Diwali meant keeping the firecrackers to dry on the terrace before the special day, wearing new clothes, and lighting diyas on the verandah. Soulfully capturing the mundane moments of togetherness and joy in a small town family, Gamak Ghar has one beautiful sequence where the whole family of uncles, aunts and cousins burst crackers together and the light reflects on the walls of the ever-present home.

Where to watch: Prime Video

2. Om Shanti Om: Farah Khan‘s Om Shanti Om makes for a good ol’ time with dollops of melodrama, foot-tapping songs (Deewangi Deewangi still rules) and a soulful reincarnation tale with Shah Rukh Khan in the lead. Deepika Padukone’s Shantipriya is a screen debut for the ages. Yet, for all its cinematic extravaganza, Om Shanti Om still remains deliciously entertaining and light-hearted in its approach to the world of stardom.

Where to watch: Netflix

3. Rocky Aur Rani Kii Prem Kahani: Karan Johar is in conscious dialogue with his own brand of mainstream sensibilities with Rocky Aur Rani ki Prem Kahaani, which is undoubtedly one of the very best films of the year. When sparks fly between flamboyant Rocky Randhawa (Ranveer Singh) and intellectual Bengali journalist Rani (Alia Bhatt), they hatch a plan to switch themselves with each other’s family in order to make things work. Not a single second feels dull in this delightful film hiding a furiously modern core underneath.

Where to watch: Prime Video

4. Bangalore Days: Divya (Nazariya Nazim), Kuttan (Nivin Pauly), and Arjun (Dulquer Salmaan) are three cousins from Kerala who move to Bangalore in Anjali Menon’s refreshing and breezy film, that feels like a warm hug on a cold winter night. Each of these characters have their own dreams of experiencing their best years in the city, eager to explore what the city has to offer them. Bangalore Days quietly reminds us about the comfort and care of familial bonds, and lightens up for a perfect watch on Diwali with our closest ones.

Where to watch: Disney+ Hotstar

5. Kumbalangi Nights: Four siblings reside in the backwaters of a tiny village in Kerala, in Madhu C. Narayanan’s immensely moving slice-of-life tale. Infused with soulful, melodious compositions from Sushin Shyam, ranging from Cherathukal to the blissful Uyiril Thodum, Kumbalangi Nights asks important questions on mental health, patriarchy and gender norms, with tremendous gentleness and empathy. Kumbalangi Nights makes a beautiful pick for the festive season. One to watch and savour with the entire family. Because, it is laced with the insight that the world might anticipate shifts in power, but within the house its still a safe space to accept change.

Where to watch: Prime Video

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