If you look at evolution within Bollywood, in terms of good content, it has been slow yet progressive. Various celebrities have held on to the idea of evolving content and they've tried to deliver the same over the years.
Somehow though, only a few have managed to stand out with their ubiquitous panache and acting prowess, while delivering some excellent quality content on-screen. One of the fewer actors who comes to mind when I pack these sentences together is Aamir Khan and at 54, he's made a huge mark on the entire cinematic experience in India.
He started his journey in 1988, with a romantic drama 'Quamat Se Quamat Tak' and went on to do several others like 'Raja Hindustani', 'Akele Hum Akele Tum', 'Dil', 'Love, Love Love' etc. till he stumbled upon his impeccable comic timing in 'Andaaz Apna Apna', which is talked about while he's praised for it, till date.
Over the years though, Aamir encapsulated his finesse as a good actor by doing some pertinent roles both in the 90s and the early 2000s. Films like 'Sarfarosh', 'Rangeela' and 'Ghulam' made him popular amongst young people, for donning relatable roles time and again. But because he's a visionary, he always looked far ahead and looked at how his passion for acting could also make a large-scale difference in society.
Aamir takes story-telling as an art that can also change someone's life along with changing the trajectory of cinema in India. Through his stories on real-time issues that plague society, he connects with a larger audience who appreciate his work and acknowledge the sentiments behind it.
Here are 8 Aamir Khan movies that have greatly impacted Indian cinema with a great story-telling landscape for the audience!(1) Lagaan (2001)
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'Lagaan' marked the beginning of Aamir's 'films with a social cause'. The film was a historical epic sports drama set in the colonial British era, where a village bound by high taxes, found a way to evade them by beating the Britishers in a Cricket match. The film was nominated for an Oscar award as well.(2) Dil Chahta Hai (2001)
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DCH was definitely the defining film for Indian cinema with its forward outlook and relatable characters. It promoted deep and meaningful friendships, love and travel all at once and the songs still ring a fresh bell, every time they're played. People still rave about how classy the film was and trust me, 'Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara', another travel based film has nothing on it!(3) Rang De Basanti (2006)
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The cult classic is one of Aamir's most talked about and liked film, and we couldn't help but mention this one. The film revolves around a bunch of young people who revolutionise the idea of Independence while trying to make correctives with the 'system' as outiders. Aamir's role as DJ is very pronounced because he doesn't stand-out as a superstar in the film but as someone who shares equal role responsibility with the rest of the cast. The film also promotes more action to change something than sitting at coffee shops talking and debating about 'change' and maybe that's why the public really enjoyed this one.(4) Taare Zameen Par (2007)
© Aamir Khan Productions
Talking about Aamir's films that have impacted social norms and given rise to content based on good causes, 'Taare Zameen Par' tops the list for sure. The film explores the life and imagination of 8-year-old Ishaan, who is dyslexic and tries to cope with life through his shortcomings, only to discover his talent elsewhere. The film made a huge impact for people suffering with the same condition and it became a beacon of hope for many.(5) 3 Idiots (2009)
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'3 Idiots' was based on a Chetan Bhagat novel by the same name and the film did remarkably well. Again leaning toward a social stigma, the film talked about flaws in the Indian education system and how parents and students both blindly fall prey to it. The film was funny in doses but the message was well received by the audience.(6) Dhobi Ghat (2011)
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Aamir's first art and parallel cinema film, 'Dhobi Ghat' didn't do well with the audience but the critics absolutely loved the film. It was also long listed for the 65th BAFTA Awards. The film revolved around the lives of four individuals and how they intersected at some point in time in the movie. It was a beautiful directorial debut by Kiran Rao, Aamir's wife and Aamir produced the movie as well as acted in it.(7) PK (2014)
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Aamir played an alien who comes down to Earth and falls prey to religious fanatics, self-proclaimed God men and blind faith. The film touched a sensitive nerve and became an important topic of discussion but it also showcased how most people blindly follow a religion, in order to believe in something. Aamir did get critical acclaim for the film as it was the first film that initiated debates about some stubborn religious views.(8) Dangal (2016)
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At the a time when most of Aamir's colleagues are still romancing actresses half their age on the big screen, Aamir took a rather challenging role and played the least glamorous role of a father to two girls, in his most talked about film Dangal. Aamir plays the role of Mahavir Singh Phogat, an amateur wrestler, who goes against 'what people think and speak' and trains his two daughters Geeta and Babita Kumari Phogat to become India's first world-class wrestlers.
The film nailed it at the box office and everyone raved about it, as it was one of his finest films ever. The actor also had to work hard on his physique to build a wrestler's body and surely enough, his hard work paid off well.
Apart from creating a stern chance for philanthropic work on grave social issues in society, through his films, Aamir believes in his art so much that he never attends a single award function. His vision and ideologies go hand in hand with his dedication towards cinema and we're glad we have someone amidst us who understands the importance of some great cinematic experience.
Here's wishing to see some more great work from one of the best actors we have in the industry today.