It’s winter — the weather’s cooler, power outages are on an all-time low, and the party and wedding seasons are in full swing. And where there are parties, there is music — so here are the top five songs that absolutely must be part of your winter playlist...
Singers: Sayeed Quadri, Shreya Ghoshal, Udit Narayan and Vishal Dadlani
From the year’s biggest bubble gum fantasy (Student of the Year), Karan Johar’s coming-of-age Bromance, this is the ‘it’ song of the party and wedding season, and the perfect one to get you on to the dance floor. But, beware, playing this song may get you a few disapproving glances from the talibani relatives who are always present at weddings, since the lyrics do state “Radha likes to move that sexy Radha body.”!
2. Disco Deewane
Singers: Benny Dayal, Sunidhi Chauhan, Nazia Hassan
And where there is Radha there must be The Disco Song, a remixed version of Disco Deewane — (the unforgettable 80s anthem by Pakistan’s sweetheart, the late Nazia Hasan). Although the remixed version has engendered some rage amongst the purists, the song, which is also from Student of the Year, like Radha, is guaranteed to get you on the dance floor.
3. Hain Ye Silsilay
Singer: Zoe Viccaji
Serving as the ‘title song’ of the new drama Tanhaiyan Naye Silsilay (the sequel to the classic Tanhiayan) the song is perhaps one of the catchiest amongst drama soundtracks which generally tend to be filled with the rona dhona which is typical of most dramas that are being aired. Rendered against the tune of the original play’s background score, the song is upbeat and the lyrics too are pretty hummable.
4. Gangam Style
One of the most viral songs — and video — of the year, with at least a billion views worldwide, Gangnam Style has been defined as “a Korean neologism mainly associated with upscale fashion and lavish lifestyle associated with trendsetters in Seoul’s Gangnam district”. It’s catchy and great fun to dance to, especially if you know the right moves!
5. Phir le aya dil
Singers: Rekha Bhardwaj and Arifit Singh
While this isn’t one for the dance floor, this soulful rendition is just right for one of those quiet winter nights when you’re on your own, reading a good book, or just plain relaxing or waxing nostalgic. With wonderful, sensitive lyrics by Swanand Kirkire, the song is from one of the year’s top grossing movies, Barfi!
What to watch:
2012 saw plenty of hits come its way. Here are the top five which you must watch – or re-watch!
Student of the year
Call it what you will — shallow, excessive or just plain unrealistic — Student of the Year was an out and out entertainer. With Karan Johar at the helm, you cannot expect anything else. Yet, in addition to glossy sets and branded wear that even the supposed ‘poor’ protagonist wore, the movie proved to be a hit. And while it can be dubbed a ‘commercial’ film, it did carry shades of several films by John Hughes such as The Breakfast Club, Pretty in Pink and Sixteen Candles.
Not only was this the Empress Sridevi’s comeback vehicle, English Vinglish was one of the most refreshing — and entertaining — movies of the year, not to mention one of the shortest Bollywood has churned out with a running time of about 120 minutes. With excellent acting, scripting and direction, the movie was a great reprieve from the usual Bollywood masala films; it was sensitively made, and proved that you don’t have to have item numbers and crass dialogues to ensure box office returns.
The Dark Knight Rises
The second highest grossing Hollywood film of the year, the Dark Knight Rises was also a huge hit in Pakistan, where tickets were sold out weeks before the film premiered here. Centring on (obviously) the brooding Batman, the film was a marked improvement when compared to the soulless Spiderman reboot.
Breaking Dawn 2— the twilight saga
With plenty of vampire beheadings, mysterious and supernatural children and gorgeous sets, while the movie may not have taxed your grey cells, it did manage to keep one glued especially during the anti-climactic fight sequence towards the end. And with foreign vampires adding to the star-studded cast, it didn’t leave the millions of 14-year-old girls wanting more. Not to mention, it was a drastic improvement when compared to Breaking Dawn I which literally caused seizures amongst audiences. All in all, it was a worthy send-off to our favourite pretty vampires.
With a cast that comprised Aamir Khan, Rani Mukherjee and Kareena Kapoor, one would expect a good movie. And Talaash didn’t disappoint — most people anyway. With a taut script and slick direction and a haunting soundtrack, the film was gripping, to say the least. And the ending was definitely a surprise — and although unrealistic, it was (somewhat) believable.
(If five movies are not enough feel free to add Kahani — a gripping thriller starring Vidya Balan in yet another memorable role — and the heart-warming Barfi to the list.)
What to read:
While the winter is ideal for all socialising, it is also the perfect time to curl up and revisit your favourite books of all time. Here are some favourites — while they are different in terms of genres and style of writing (at times drastically so) they are all thoroughly memorable.