In the current scenario, it's a given for the stars of a given film to steal all the available thunder. And nobody complains much, either. However, cinema is a collaborative process and it's not just the leading roles that lend a film its character. Many a times, smaller but significant roles gleam like gems and get noticed due to their talent. 2014 hasn't been short in this particular department as hitlist takes you on a walk through some of the performances by actors who did not really helm the film but certainly left an edible mark on audience's mind...
Director: Vikas Bahl
Highlight of the performance: Lisa portrayed an Indian girl who is based in Paris. She's not only a single mother but also a remarkably carefree person. It was a tailor-made role for Lisa and it helped her gain loads of attention from the critics as well as audience. Though the story focused on Kangna Ranaut's pivotal character, Lisa provided the much-needed relief factor.
Tahir Raj Bhasin
Director: Pradeep Sarkar
Highlight of the performance: Unlike a lot of his peer, Tahir took intensive training in acting before stepping on the big screen. And it clearly showed! After smaller roles here and there, the actor struck gold with 'Mardaani' where he played a negative role. Though the film was all about female cop and human trafficking, Tahir's mean act attracted rave attention, even from the likes of Aamir Khan.
Film: 'Bobby Jasoos'
Director: Samar Shaikh
Highlight of the performance: Ali proved his mettle in films like '3 Idiots', 'Fukrey' and so on. Even if 'Bobby Jasoos' was basically about a female detective's rather strained relationship with her father and how she solved a case, Ali was impeccable as her prospective groom. What was interesting to note was his comfortable graph in front of an established actress.
Director: Nitin Kakkar
Highlight of the performance: He has worked as a scriptwriter and dialogue-writer before facing the camera but it was hard to see the difference between his behind-the-scene skills and in front of it. Playing a pirated CD vendor, he appeared more than just convincing in a role which was all about mistaken identity. The film was accentuated with his performance.
Film: 'Ekkees Toppon Ki Salaami'
Director: Ravindra Gautam
Highlight of the performance: Neha's role in this political satire was indeed interesting. Playing an astute mistress of a beleaguered politician, her only aim is to gain money as well as from his association. But the way her character invites pity as well as laughter merits a mention. The comic touch to her nautanki-laced dialogues came as a dose of relief in the film.
Film: 'Ek Villain'
Director: Mohit Suri
Highlight of the performance: While throughout the film, every character seemed to be trying very hard to be cunning and intense, Aamna's role was simple and realistic. The charming actress played a nagging wife to Riteish Deshmukh's ambiguous man and her transition from argumentative middle class woman to a dutiful wife was intriguing to say the least.
Film: 'Kill Dil'
Director: Shaad Ali
Highlight of the performance: After playing a sort of light-hearted major in 'Holiday', it was a refreshing change to witness the ever-colourful Govinda as a head of gang. It was one of those strong roles that the actor has shied away from in his heydays. Coming back to his role, he was not exactly mean but it was a delight to see him stepping out of his comfort zone.
Film: 'Happy New Year'
Director: Farah Khan
Highlight of the performance: Often it is said that in multi-starrer films of Bollywood, the actors don't get their said due — either commercially or critically. However Abhi's role in this film not only stood out but he pleasantly surprised everyone with his ease with the quirky language, mannerism as well as comic timing. He played both his character of tapori and dreaded villain with ease.
Director: Vishal Bhardwaj
Highlight of the performance: After playing a forgettable role in 'Jai Ho', Tabu made a comeback with a bang in 'Haider'. Known for her measured performance, the seasoned actress simply killed it — in a good way, of course — as a conflicted woman. With her work in the Kashmir-based film, one can forgive her for being so choosy about her roles.
Film: 'Ankhon Dekhi'
Director: Rajat Kapoor
Highlight of the performance: Seema Pahwa's character in the film is as subtle as she gets boisterous. Playing Sanjay Mishra's wife, she comes across the voice of reasoning as well as impatience. Although Mishra is the undoubted star of the low-budget film but she makes her presence felt with her overwhelming dialogues. We'd love to see more of her.