Director: Imtiaz Ali
Cast: Randeep Hooda, Alia Bhatt
Veera Tripathi (Alia Bhatt) is the daughter of a rich Delhi-based businessman. One day before her wedding, she’s kidnapped from a petrol station. While her abductors initially panic after coming to know of her father’s high connection, they nevertheless agree to follow what they had planned. They move her from city to city in a truck to avoid getting detected by the police. Veera comes close to the leader of the gang, Mahabir Bhati (Randeep Hooda), and even develops romantic feelings for him. He’s initially sceptical by this change but in the end, comes to accept it as one of life’s insoluble puzzles. He instinctively understands she must have gone through emotional trauma in the past just like him. Unfortunately, he’s killed in a police shootout but the road trip and the time she had spent with him gives her the courage to speak about being abused by her uncle as a child. She leaves the house and sets up a small business in the mountains, finally being at peace with herself. This is the film where Alia proved herself to be an actor to watch out for. Her primal scream near the end gave you goosebumps.
2 States (2014)
Director: Abhishek Verman
Cast: Arjun Kapoor, Alia Bhatt, Amrita Singh, Revathy, Shiv Subramaniyam and Ronit Roy
Krish Malhotra (Arjun Kapoor) and Ananya Swaminathan (Alia Bhatt) meet at the IIM Ahmedabad and instantly connect. He’s a clean-cut Punjabi munda at odds with his father. She’s a chulbuli Tam Bram who likes chicken tikka and beer. The usual college friendship leads to the friends-with-benefits arc. In between, they discover love and decide to get married. That’s where things get complicated as they don’t want to elope but want to get hitched with their parents’ blessings. How they go about getting their folks around that difficult bend and go through their own relationship niggles forms the crux of the story. Alia playing a South Indian was a bit of a far fetched ploy but she pulled it off admiringly well. Her chemistry with Arjun Kapoor worked as well.
Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania (2014)
Director: Shashank Khaitan
Cast: Varun Dhawan, Alia Bhatt, Sidharth Shukla, Ashutosh Rana
This was Shashank Khaitan’s take on the iconic DDLJ. Kavya (Alia Bhatt), is set to be engaged to an NRI American doctor, Angad (Siddharth Shukla). She goes to Delhi to buy an expensive dress for her and bumps into Humpty (Varun Dhawan). He tries to woo her but she’s not interested. Over time, they do become friends, however. Humpty wants to marry her but she says she won’t go against her father’s wishes. When Humpty turns up at her place, her father gets him beaten up at first but later gives him one week’s time to prove why he’s better than Angad. On her wedding day, Kavya runs off but Humpty asks her to stay back. He gives an emotional speech in front of her father as to how he may not be better than Angad but loves her more. The father, realising the truth of the statement, later gives her permission to marry him. Alia was impressive in this conventional romance with a bit of twist. And her chemistry with Varun sparkled as well.
Udta Punjab (2016)
Director: Abhishek Chaubey
Cast: Shahid Kapoor, Kareena Kapoor, Alia Bhatt, Diljit Dosanjh, Satish Kaushik
Punjab has become a den of drug addiction and the film is an eye-opener about the fact. It points out how this culture flourishes with the help of a nexus between politicians and mafia and how even the police are involved in it. It also lays bare the fact that popular singers are propagating drug culture through their songs and their lifestyle. It’s not an easy film to watch as people are killed and abused because of their connection with drugs. Tommy (Shahid Kapoor) is a rockstar who lives on cocaine but changes his ways when he learns the harm his lifestyle has been causing. He rescues a Bihari migrant Bauria (Alia Bhatt) from the clutches of drug smugglers. Bauria has been sexually abused by them repeatedly but hasn’t lost the will to survive. Diljit Dosanjh plays Sartaj, a policeman whose younger brother is a drug addict. He collects evidence against a big shot politician engaged in the trade with the help of a doctor, Preet, played by Kareena Kapoor. Preet gets killed by Sartaj’s brother while he was escaping a rehabilitation centre. An enraged Sartaj takes the law in his own hands and kills the local drug dealers. Alia played a woman who got trampled every turn of the way but didn’t let herself get broken. And we loved the ending when she names herself as Mary Jane.
Dear Zindagi (2016)
Director: Gauri Shinde
Cast: Alia Bhatt, Shah Rukh Khan
Alia was being a normal yuppie girl in her 20s here — not only clueless about life but not totally sure about it either. Again, it was a straight-from-the-heart performance indeed. Kaira (Alia Bhatt) is a young cinematographer who wishes to direct her own films. She is most comfortable around her besties Fatima (Ira Dubey), Jackie (Yashaswini Dayama) and Ganju (Gautmik). Kaira is left heartbroken when her boyfriend Raghuvendra (Kunal Kapoor), a film producer, gets engaged to someone else. Her landlord also chucks her out and as a result, she has to shift base to Goa from Mumbai. Kaira resents the fact that her parents, (Aban Deohans and Atul Kale), had abandoned her to live with her grandparents when she was a kid. She seeks out Dr. Jehangir “Jug” Khan (Shah Rukh Khan), a psychologist, to sort out her life as she’s suffering from insomnia. Jug asks her to let go of her resentment, to see her parents as being regular people and forgive their mistakes. He advises her about other aspects as well. They have long conversations about everything under the sun and despite their age difference, she begins to like him. When she confesses that to him, he says he too likes her in a platonic way and beyond that it won’t be possible for them to have a relationship as they are bound by the doctor-patient bond. They share a last hug together and part.
Badrinath Ki Dulhania (2017)
Director: Shashank Khaitan
Cast: Alia Bhatt, Varun Dhawan
Badri (Varun Dhawan) and Vaidehi (Alia Bhatt) meet at a wedding and that’s the start of their unlikely romance. She’s highly educated and harbours a secret desire of going to Singapore to attend a flight stewardess school there. He tries to woo her in the usual tapori style seen in our films but ditches him at the altar at the last minute. That’s when he hatches the plan to go to Singapore to kidnap her. Whether he succeeds in convincing her or not forms the crux of the film. The romantic formula got reversed in the film. Alia is shown as a fiercely independent girl while Varun is shown as an emotional guy who happens to be a goon engaged in repossession business. This role reversal worked big time and the film proved to be a big hit. It entertained and also struck a punch for women empowerment.
Director: Meghna Gulzar
Cast: Alia Bhatt, Vicky Kaushal, Rajit Kapur, Shishir Sharma, Jaideep Ahlawat, Ashwath Bhatt, Amruta Khanvilkar, Soni Razdan, Arif Zakaria
Alia Bhatt plays a Kashmiri girl Sehmat, who gets married to a Pakistani army officer Iqbal Syed (Vicky Kaushal) at the insistence of her father Hidayat (Rajit Kapur), a double agent whose loyalties lie with India. Iqbal is the son of Brigadier Syed (Shishir Sharma), a high ranking army officer, who also happens to be Hidayat’s handler in Pakistan. Hidayat is dying of cancer and wants his daughter to take his place. Khalid Mir (Jaideep Ahlawat), a veteran Indian intelligence officer, teaches Sehmat the tricks of the spy trade before she’s married off. In Pakistan, she doesn’t have any direct contact with Indian authorities and has to rely on her wits and ingenuity to get the job done. How she sets about it and what sacrifices she has to make forms the crux of the film. Alia is the soul of the film. isn’t made out to be some kind of lady James Bond. She gets both shaken and stirred and it’s her fragility that makes the drama more compelling.
Gully Boy (2019)
Director: Zoya Akhtar
Cast: Ranveer Singh, Alia Bhatt, Kalki Koechlin, Vijay Raaz, Siddhant Chaturvedi, Vijay Verma
Murad (Ranveer Singh) is the son of a driver (Vijay Raaz) studying in college. The film begins on a grim note. We come to know that his father has brought in another wife, a much younger woman, much to the mother’s chagrin. Murad has been in a relationship with Safeena (Alia Bhatt) since they were in school. They have been able to keep it clandestine. She’s a medical student aspiring to become a surgeon and is in a better financial condition than Murad as her father is a general practitioner. He chances upon MC Sher (Siddhant Chaturvedi) in a college fest and feels he too can rap. Sher becomes his mentor and advises him to listen to his heart and write. They become friends with Sky (Kalki Koechlin), a musician studying at Berkeley college who wants to introduce Mumbai street sound to the world. They cut an album with her help which becomes an instant sensation on YouTube. He further gets a chance to take part in a music contest that could win him ten lakh rupees and a chance to open the concert of an international rapper coming to India. Emotional and financial hurdles come in his way and how Murad keeps his faith and realises his dream forms the crux of the film. Alia is so good that you regret the film isn’t about her character Safeena. She’s a jealous lover personified and sort of takes over the film. You can’t take your eyes off her.