Cinemas in India celebrated National Cinema Day on Friday, September 23, with tickets priced at just $0.92 and millions flocking to cinemas. Old versions including Ayan Mukerji Brahmastra first part Shiva, and the Hollywood Avatar re-release scored the biggest. New Hindi releases Chup An Artist’s Revenge and Dhokha Round D Corner also had a decent box office performance.
The Ranbir Kapoor-Alia Bhatt star scored $2.4 million in the third weekend of its release. The film was released on September 9 worldwide. It has grossed nearly $49 million worldwide in the past three weeks. R Balki’s Chup An Artist’s Revenge earned $0.85 million in the Indian market while Dhokha Round D Corner raised $0.28 million.
Balki’s film is a comedic thriller that is also an ode to legendary Indian filmmaker Guru Dutt. The way critics hurt the feelings of filmmakers when panning a film is central to the narrative that relies on a psychopathic serial killer to deliver the message. Starring Shreya Dhanwanthary, Dulquer Salmaan and Sunny Deol in the lead roles, the film traces the events around a serial killer who targets film critics who see cinema as he does. The film is co-written by long-time professional film critic Raja Sen.
Chup An Artist’s Revenge is a sweet ode to Dutt, especially his last film Kaagaz Ke Phool. The film often points to the similarities it wants to draw with Dutt’s cinema, in case you haven’t looked enough at the legendary filmmakers’ gems. It even ends with one of the main cast in an iconic Dutt-style frame – his backlit figure. It falters and doesn’t quite work like a thriller, with most of the crucial points being predictable enough. Nonetheless, it’s a good watch powered by compelling work from the main cast.
With R Madhavan, Aparshakti Khurrana, Khushali Kumari and Darshan Kumar in the lead roles, Gulati’s Dhokha Round D Corner is also a thriller, and a comedy. Both new movies opened to mixed reviews and managed to get decent opening weekend collections in India.
The three Hindi films currently in theaters have announced lower ticket prices from Monday. Tickets for these films will cost $1.22 until September 29 to mark the Navratri festival, producers have announced. The steps appear to have been inspired by the tremendous response to National Film Day celebrated in India on September 23, which saw more than 6.5 million steps according to the Multiplex Association of India. Most theaters reported 70-90% occupancy throughout the day.