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Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Must watch road-trip movies: Little Miss Sunshine, The Motorcycle Diaries, Piku and more

Can't go out? Travel vicariously through these road-trip movies.

Written by Anvita Singh | New Delhi | Published: May 14, 2020 8:51:16 am
road trip movies (From left) A still from Highway, the Little Miss Sunshine poster and a still from The Motorcycle Diaries (Photo: UTV Motion Pictures, Fox Searchlight Pictures and Focus Features).

At a time when our movement has been restricted due to the coronavirus outbreak, one can only hope to travel vicariously through our favourite films. Here are some of my favourite road-trip movies.

The Motorcycle Diaries

Based on the memoir of the late Marxist leader Che Guevara, this movie is part biopic and part travel feature. The film highlights the journey undertaken by the then 23-year-old Che and his close friend Alberto Granado to explore a large part of South America on a motorbike. The film offers perspectives on class, values and the society we take for granted. It is picturesque, moving and features a stunning performance by lead actor Gael Garcia Bernal.

Finding Fanny

I remember watching Finding Fanny in 2014 and having a good time at the theater. Starring Deepika Padukone, Arjun Kapoor, Dimple Kapadia and Naseeruddin Shah in pivotal roles, the movie is an unlikely tale of love and adventure where an old man seeks to reunite with his former flame. You can stream the film on Hotstar.

Thelma & Louise

The 1991 Ridley Scott directorial featured Geena Davis and Susan Sarandon as Thelma and Louise, respectively. The film revolves around two best friends who go out to let their hair down until a tragedy befalls them. Now considered a cult feminist classic, at the time the movie was criticised for the way it portrayed men. The movie was nominated for a total of six Academy Awards and ended up picking one — Best Original Screenplay.

Honeymoon Travels Pvt Ltd

kay kay menon Kay Kay Menon and Raima Sen in a still from Honeymoon Travels Pvt Ltd.

Honeymoon Travels Pvt Ltd is a film that ably links six stories and multiple characters together. The movie marked the Bollywood debut of filmmaker Reema Kagti. While the film may not have found many takers, the movie, in hindsight, has been praised for its performances and creativity. It featured Boman Irani, Shabana Azmi, Arjun Rampal, Kay Kay Menon, Sandhya Mridul and Abhay Deol among others. You can watch it on YouTube and Netflix.


Yes, this Imtiaz Ali movie has a lead character (Alia Bhatt’s Veera) that exhibits certain Stockholm Syndrome traits (a condition where a person falls for their abductor). But one must take stock of other nuances of the character as well. For instance, what prompted her to feel this way for a kidnapper in the first place? Was she not heard, seen and loved by the people who claimed to be close to her? The movie throws light on these issues while taking us on a ride to the mountains and the river valleys of Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh. It features beautiful camera work by Anil Mehta. Starring Alia Bhatt and Randeep Hooda, Highway is available for streaming on Hotstar.

Little Miss Sunshine

This acclaimed movie had multiple first-timers working behind the camera — screenplay writer Michael Arndt and director duo Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris. However, the end product doesn’t seem amateurish at all.

A family of ‘real people’ with their own set of problems and eccentricities is the focus of the narrative. But things take a U-turn when they discover that the family’s little one has qualified for a beauty pageant called ‘Little Miss Sunshine.’ The movie stars Steve Carell, Greg Kinnear, Toni Collette, Alan Arkin, Paul Dano and Abigail Breslin. You can stream it on YouTube.


Featuring the trio of Irrfan Khan, Deepika Padukone and Amitabh Bachchan, Shoojit Sircar film Piku tackles the modern-day relationship shared by a father and daughter. Things get interesting when a transport agency owner joins them for a one-of-a-kind journey to Kolkata. Brilliant performances and a touching story are the USPs of the film. You can watch Piku on YouTube and SonyLIV.

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