Not to sound overly optimistic, but the silver lining to this lockdown is that we have the gift of time. If you wish to start watching some good Marathi movies, we are here to help you. Many Marathi movies are backed by substantial subject matter and are simply waiting to be discovered. The good news is that we have done the research for you and here are the seven best Marathi cinema movies that ought to be on your list. These are a perfect balance of new-vintage, light, and slightly heavy films, and we’re fairly certain no better list exists.

Chaukat Raja

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Starring the enviously talented Dilip Prabhavalkar in the lead role, Chaukat Raja is a tale of a man with a mental imbalance who meets his childhood sweetheart, who’s now happily married. While the film is heartbreaking in places, it is a sweet movie overall and makes for a wholesome, satisfying watch.

Shwaas

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A playful, young boy from a small village and is diagnosed with cancer in a big city hospital and will soon go blind because of the suggested surgery. His doting grandfather takes him on a day-long adventure with the intent of showing his grandson as many beautiful sights as humanly possible in this limited time. The performances by Arun Nalawade and Sandeep Kulkarni are heartfelt and nuanced. This Oscar-nominated gem is a moving and ingenious movie.

Valu

Stream this on Hungama

One of the most cleverly written films, Valu stars Atul Kulkarni as Swanand Gaddamwar, a Forest Officer. He is sent to a small village in Maharashtra called Kusavde to catch a “valu” (a bull that has been set free in the village in the name of God). Valu is low-key hilarious and terribly charming.

Harishchandrachi Factory

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Based on the first feature-length film ever made in India and the eccentric man who made it, this one is about Dadasaheb Phalke. If you expect the film to be a laborious historic account of his life, you couldn’t be more wrong. Harishchandrachi Factory is funny, light, and breezy and makes for an inspiring watch, especially if you love cinema as we do.

Jogwa

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A film that won five National Awards in multiple categories must be watched by all. The story is about a young girl Suli (Mukta Barve) whose life takes a cruel turn when she is forced to serve the local devi because of superstitious beliefs. When she meets Tayappa (Upendra Limaye) who is also forced into a similar fate, their budding friendship gives them hope and a feeling of belonging. Plus, the music of this movie is transcendental.

Matichya Chuli

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Conflicts, especially with loved ones, are a big part of life. A nice young man Vishal and a financially independent Pooja get married and are excited about their married life. However, they find it increasingly difficult to live their lives as Pooja and Vishal’s mother are constantly at loggerheads. While no one is completely right or wrong, their lives are intertwined in an unpleasant mess. However, the film ends on a beautiful note. This movie is intense as it is light-hearted, not unlike real life.

Baapjanma

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Directed by one of the brightest contemporary National Award-winning Marathi directors Nipun Dharmadhikari, Baapjanma stars the very talented Sachin Khedekar as an elderly widower who has not been in touch with his kids a lot. He reads his entires in his day-to-day journal only to realize that he has been living a rigid routine all his life. This triggers him to mend things with his children and he is willing to jump through tough hoops for that.

Now that your induction into Marathi cinema is complete, make sure you don’t lose momentum. And most importantly, be safe.