“Tarik pe tarik, tarik pe tarik!” When it comes to courtroom dramas, Bollywood has given us plenty. From the overly dramatic Damini and Meri Jung, to realistic masterpieces such as Pink, these movies have moved us to the core. The tension on-screen sort of radiates towards the viewer and the viewers can’t help but identify themselves with the victims. But the abundance of thrill and unpredictability of the plot always keeps us on edge. Let’s have a look at some of the best Bollywood courtroom dramas that have displayed sheer brilliance.
“No means No!” This clarion call spread like wildfire after this movie was released. A retired lawyer steps forward to help a girl who has been molested by an influential man when the accused tries to get her case rigged. The movie has some exceptionally well-executed and realistic courtroom scenes that would move even the hardest of hearts. This is one of the finest works of Amitabh Bachchan.
2. Jolly LLB
Both this movie and its sequel are absolute gems. Looking at the poster one wouldn’t be prepared for the extremely thrilling and engaging plot amidst all the comedy that is promised. In a society drowning in crime and corruption, how far would a lawyer go to fetch justice for a client? Special mention to the ‘pandit confrontation’ scene at the end of Jolly LLB 2.
Murad Ali Mohammed’s son joins an extremist group, leaving his father and wife with the accusation of having links with terrorists as well. This sensitive topic is dealt with sincerity and dexterity in this movie. The exceptional performances of the actors elevate the movie to new heights.
4. Nail Polish
Manav Kaul and Arjun Rampal deliver stellar performances in this lesser-talked-about but interestingly gritty movie. A social activist is accused of raping and murdering migrant minors, as people gape in disbelief of the charges. If you are a fan of twists, this movie is for you. It will leave you satisfied to the core.
What does a defense lawyer do when his client doesn’t want to be defended and admits to the crime he committed? This is what happens in the movie as Siddhant Chaudhary tries to defend Major Javed Khan who is charged with the murder of his commanding officer.
6. OMG Oh My God
When Kanji’s shop is destroyed due to an earthquake and he fails to get the insurance money, he decides to sue God. The drama that follows is thoroughly entertaining. Witty dialogues, intense repartees, and debates are what make this movie a must-watch.
7. Section 375
What exactly is this consent? What is its value? This movie will either help you answer this question or beat you into question your own being. This is courtroom drama at its best, fighting over a rape case, a mentor and his mentee leave no stone unturned to give justice to their clients. But does innocence really exist in this world?
A navy officer returns home to find that his wife is having an extra-marital affair with a businessman. He is later charged with the murder of his wife’s lover. The way he defends himself is what makes this movie really interesting.
The multiple awards and accolades that this movie has under its name are proof enough of its brilliance. A lawyer who has dedicated his life to helping victims falsely accused with charges of terrorism finds himself in the same predicament. It is difficult to imagine any other actor in place if Rajkumar Rao for this role, the National Film Award for Best Actor says it all.
10. No One Killed Jessica
I haven’t seen a movie more gripping and tense than this one here. How difficult is it to prove that a girl has been shot when there are at least a dozen eyewitnesses to the event? Trust me, it’s very difficult when the murderer is the son of an influential politician. You can feel the helplessness of the family reek through the screen, such is the power of this film. Undoubtedly, this is the best Bollywood courtroom drama of recent times.
11. Ek Ruka Hua Faisla
A remake of the critically acclaimed movie 12 Angry Men, Ek Ruka Hua Faisla is a cinematic masterpiece. When a teen is charged with the murder of his father and a verdict against him would result in a death sentence, one of the 12 jury members thinks that the boy is innocent. This irks the other jury members and we get to witness a soul-satisfying and thrilling debate.
12. Mohan Joshi Hazir Ho!
Art films of the 80s were a class apart. This movie is a fight of an old couple against their landlord who doesn’t maintain the old apartment building. The case is dragged for years and the couple becomes almost bankrupt but still, they keep on fighting. This movie is a must-watch.
Honourable mentions: Andha Kanoon, Damini
So, these were some of the most engaging and best Bollywood courtroom dramas. Which of these gems is your favourite? Do let us know in the comments section!