This World Health Day holds a special significance for the medical fraternity, as it is working selflessly to bring comfort and hope to people battling the coronavirus pandemic. The celluloid too has brought doctors and nurses alive over the years, while creating inspiring stories. Here are a few that are worth the watch.
About a goon who goes to medical school, Rajkumar Hirani’s mega hit Munna Bhai M.B.B.S. won many hearts. While protagonist Sanjay Dutt’s medical skills can be questioned, it’s his magical hug (jadoo ki jhappi) that works!
The 1970’s black and white gem Khamoshi has nurse Radha (played by Waheeda Rehman) taking care of her patients in the psychiatry ward. She eventually loses her mental balance, as her professional life merges with personal.
The hit song Zindagi Kaisi Hai Paheli from the film Anand brings along many memories. The film’s heroes – the cancer patient Anand, played by Rajesh Khanna and the doctor, Bhaskar, by Amitabh Bachchan — inspire us to live life fully.
Dr. Kotnis Ki Amar Kahani, a 1946 Hindi film, which was also made in English under the title The Journey of Dr. Kotnis, charts the story of an Indian doctor who worked in China during the Japanese invasion during World War II. Played by V. Shantaram, this doctor triumphs over plague but loses his life. About seven decades down the line, Indian doctors are found in similar circumstances working in Corona-hit countries the world over as of now.
Directed by Tapan Sinha, Ek Doctor Ki Maut is the story of Dr. Dipankar Roy (played by Pankaj Kapur), who is a pioneer in discovering a vaccine for leprosy. He’s denied the recognition by the system for the discovery. To keep striving towards the betterment of mankind is the overall message the film.
The 2019 Malayalam medical thriller Virus has Kunchacko Boban as Dr. Suresh Rajan. It is a story set during the 2018 Nipah virus outbreak in Kerala. A commercial and critical success, this film gives many lessons that we need to embrace in current times, as we fight Corona pandemic.
Patch Adams is loosely Hollywood’s Munnabhai counterpart! Played by versatile actor Robin Williams, this one makes a strong plea for how due significance must be given to treating body as well as spirit. After many struggles, Patch Adams too passes out of the medical school and becomes a qualified doctor by the end of 1998.
Based around a Manhattan ambulance paramedic and his fight to maintain sanity as he tries to save lives, Bringing Out the Dead (1999) is a Martin Scorsese drama starring Nicolas Cage. From Spiritual collapse to redemption, this paramedic is on a mission.
India’s official entry to the 2004 Oscars and a National Award-winning film, Shwaas, which was first made in Marathi, is the story of a villager, Vichare Arun Nalawade, who takes his eight-year-old grandson, Parshuraam, who suffers from retinal cancer, to Mumbai. How the doctor and a social worker convince the old man to give consent for a surgery is a heart-warming tale about how the medical fraternity gives their all to the patients.
The Lady with a Lamp is a 1951 historical film set around the life of Florence Nightingale and her staff, who went to battlefield during the Crimean War to take care of wounded soldiers. Devotion is the leitmotif of the film.
This list by no measure is exhaustive, and not all films around medical fraternity are serious, from comedies to romantic comedies, a number of films reflect different aspects!
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