The winners of the 60th National Film awards were announced at a press conference on the 18th of March, 2013. While some films that walked away with accolades aplenty at other awards ceremonies, didn’t win a National award this year, some others that were short-changed when it came to popular awards in cinema, received, in many people’s opinions, appreciation that was long-overdue. Here’s a look at four of the films that won.
This film was shunted out by Barfi as India’s entry to the Oscars. The National Film awards, however, seem to have proven lucky for this film. Based on the life of Paan Singh Tomar, gold medallist in the steeple chase event as the Indian Army’s representative in the 1967 International Military Games, the movie is a beautifully crafted biopic and a look at what forced this man to become a dacoit. The film begins with a reporter interviewing Paan Singh- who has murdered 9 people of a community. It then goes into a flashback of 1950, where a young Paan Singh leaves the army to protect his family. Director Tigmanshu Dhulia has created a film that traces the lines of crossing-over, in a way that few films do. Irfan Khan’s fantastic performance in the title role of Paan Singh Tomar, is added icing on the cake.
Dr.Baldev Chadda (played by Annu Kapoor) is a fertility expert with a clinic in Delhi (Daryaganj). Unfortunately, he has more misses than successes to account for. In a chance encounter with Vicky Arora (Ayushmann Khurrana), the doctor realizes he might just have stumbled upon the answer to his problems- the perfect donor. The film, directed by Shoojit Sircar, is more of romantic comedy with a social message worked in. Vicky’s relationship with Ashima (Yami Gupta), a sweet Bengali girl, often takes centre stage in the film- which is, for the most part, entertaining, and a light watch.
The other film that won in this category, is the Malayalam film Ustad Hotel directed by Anwar Rasheed. The film stars Dulquer Salmaan in the role of Feyzee (Faizal), who wants one thing, with all of his heart- to be a chef. This is most strongly opposed by his father who has other ambitions for his son, including marrying him off to the daughter of a wealthy businessman in Kerala. But as strong-headed young men must, Feyzee follows his heart, and goes ahead and secretly studies to be a chef. When he is then prevented from following his dream, he leaves Dubai, where he has been brought up, and goes to work at his grandfather’s hotel in Kozhikode. The film is the story of young man’s journey from wanting to become an international chef to finally choosing instead, to run his grandfather’s hotel. A sweet story with a neatly tied-in happy ending.
In this animated film, five animals, a leopard, her cub, a monkey, a bear and a parrot, go to Delhi, to ask the Parliament why their home- the forest, is on the verge of destruction. Through the course of the film, the animals ask some very important questions about the preservation of our environment and of natural animal habitats. The animals question whether it’s worth having a dialogue with the humans or if it would be wiser to simply find a new home. Popular Bollywood actors Govinda, Urmila Matondkar, Suneil Shetty, Boman Irani, and Akshaye Khanna, have lent their voices to the animal-characters in the film.
(Disclaimer: This post does not indicate the complete list of winners and is not an indicative of ranking or quality among this year's winners.)