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Although the motion picture industry in India is one of the oldest and largest in the worldwith literally thousands of productions released each yearfilms from that country have not been as well received as those from other countries. Known for their impressive musical numbers, melodramatic plots, and nationally beloved stars, Indian films have long been ignored by the West but are now at the forefront of cinema studies. With the prolific number of films available, it can be difficult to know what to watch. In 100 Essential Indian Films, Rohit K. Dasgupta and Sangeeta Datta identify and discuss significant works produced since the 1930s. Examining the output of different regional film industries throughout India, this volume offers a balance of box-office blockbusters, critical successes, and less-recognized cult classics. From early films by Satyajit Ray to contemporary classics such as Salaam Bombay and Lagaan, each entry includes comprehensive details about the film and situates the work in the context and history of the Indian canon.In addition to these notable productions, this book also examines key film directors and the work of major film stars in the industry. While many studies of Indian films focus on a single languages contributions, this encyclopedia offers a comprehensive guide to productions from across the country in various languages, including Hindi, Bengali, Tamil, Malayalam, Assamese, Punjabi, Marathi, and English. 100 Essential Indian Films is an engaging volume that will appeal to both cinema scholars and those looking for an introduction to a vital component of world cinema.