National Film Award for Best Film Critic

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National Film Award for Best Film Critic
National award for contributions to writing about Indian Cinema
Sponsored by Directorate of Film Festivals
Reward(s)
  • Swarna Kamal (Golden Lotus)
  • 75,000 (US$1,100)
First awarded1984
Last awarded2019
Most recent winnerSohini Chattopadhyay
Highlights
Total awarded40
First winnerSwapan Mallick

The National Film Award for Best Film Critic is one of the National Film Awards presented annually by the Directorate of Film Festivals, the organisation set up by Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, India. It is one of several awards presented for feature films and awarded with Swarna Kamal (Golden Lotus).

Contents

The award was instituted in 1984, at 32nd National Film Awards and awarded annually for films produced in the year across the country, in all Indian languages.

Winners

Award includes 'Swarna Kamal' (Golden Lotus) and cash prize. Following are the award winners over the years:

Awards legends
Indicates a joint award for the year
List of award recipients, showing the year, language(s) and citation
YearRecipient(s)Language(s)CitationRefs.
1984
(32nd)
Swapan MallickEnglish  [1]
1985
(33rd)
No Award [2]
1986
(34th)
Chidananda Dasgupta Bengali
For his unique writings which do not look at films in isolation and instead evaluate them in the context of a total artistic expression as integrated in other forms of arts. This gives most of his writings a broader perspective and depth and links them with social, psychological and historical changes.
[3]
1987
(35th)
Brajeshwar Madan Hindi
For his indepth approach to film appreciation, not limited solely to film reviewing, but extending to the wider aspects of film making and analysing the theme and treatment of the films for their social relevance.
[4]
1988
(36th)
Manmohan ChadhaHindi
For the seriousness of his approach and the wide compass of his thoughts.
[5]
1989
(37th)
K. N. T. Sastry Telugu
For combining the rare ability to comprehend the quintessential beauty of the bygone era and for reflecting the contemporary trends in cinema. The Jury also appreciates the wide range of topics covered by him.
[6]
1990
(38th)
Shoma A. Chatterjee Bengali
For managing admirably to get away from routine and the beaten track. She has covered an astonishing range of subjects in the articles submitted. Whether it is an interview, a critique or analysis of an unusual subject, she has combined depth with elegance.
[7]
1991
(39th)
Gautam KaulEnglish
For the clarity and consistency with which he has written on a wide range of issues, creating a better understanding of cinema as a creative medium.
[8]
1992
(40th)
Sudhir BoseBengali
His writings go beyond newspaper or magazine journalism. His courage of conviction helps him to reflect most authentically the regional and ethnic sensitibilies of cinema across globe. Whether it be Indian cinema or Hungarian or even American, Mr. Bose's articles portray a rare kind of perception.
[9]
1993
(41st)
Pritiman SarkarBengali
His articles are fine example of serious film criticism. Scholarly and sensitive to minute details of films, he has distilled years of his experience as a film society enthusiast into his writing. The jury was impressed by his insights and his love for cinema as an art form.
[10]
1994
(42nd)
Rashmi Doraiswamy English
For her perceptive and in-depth analysis of wide-ranging issues related to cinema, both in India and aboard. Her writing is not only well researched and informative but also represents a convincing point of view.
[11]
1995
(43rd)
M. C. Raja Narayanan English
  Malayalam
For his well written and analytical articles on both World cinema and the works of Indian directors. He writes with rare fluency in Malayalam and in English offering perceptive insights in a direct and readable style.
[12]
1996
(44th)
M. K. Raghavendra English
For his provocative and iconoclastic writing, which inspires debate and discussion, so rare in film criticism today.
[13]
1997
(45th)
Deepa Gahlot English
Her writings reflect a serious social and artistic approach to cinema, embracing its historical background and contemporary dynamics. It combines seriousness of understanding with popular communication and is thus of significance to the wider audience.
[14]
1998
(46th)
Meenakshi SheddeEnglish
For her lucid and objective criticism. She goes beyond the evaluation of a film in her attempt to place it in its social milieu, and her work reflects a good grasp of the aesthetics of cinema.
[15]
1999
(47th)
I. Shanmughadas Malayalam
For his understanding of the history of the art of cinema, his commitment to excellence in films, his grasp of film aesthetics and his originality of vision.
[16]
2000
(48th)
Vasiraju Prakasam Telugu
For deep knowledge of cinema which is reflected in his prolific writing.
[17]
2000
(48th)
Suresh Sharma Hindi
For his interesting and analytical writing on cinema, constantly keeping in mind the Indian viewer.
2001
(49th)
Vinod AnupamHindi
For the deep insight and social concern reflected in his questioning of phenomenon as varied as the disappearance of villages from Hindi screen and the glorification of terrorism.
[18]
2002
(50th)
Utpal Borpujari English
For his sensitive analysis of a wide range of films; Indian, foreign, feature and documentary; and his attempt to focus on social issues and changing family mores and values.
[19]
2003
(51st)
Saibal Chatterjee English
For incisive, bold and realistic criticism of the film industry couched in a refreshing style of writing.
[20]
2004
(52nd)
Namrata Joshi English
For consistently maintaining a high standard of film evaluation at a time when reviews are tending to become a public relations exercise. Her writings reveal a sound grasp of all aspects of film-making.
[21]
2005
(53rd)
Baradwaj Rangan English
For intelligent and reader-friendly reviews of popular cinema with a depth of understanding of the form, a discernible passion for the medium bulwarked consistently by a knowledge of the trends and touchstones of global cinema.
[22]
2006
(54th)
G. P. RamachandranMalayalam
For his analytical and perceptive writing on a wide range of themes and cinematic styles.
[23]
2006
(54th)
Rafique A. R. BaghdadiEnglish
For his writings on the history of cinema as well as his cogent analysis of contemporary cinema.
2007
(55th)
V. K. Joseph Malayalam
For his intellectual and aesthetic integrity in writing about regional, national and world cinema.
[24]
2008
(56th)
Altaf Mazid English
  Assamese
For a straight laced expression marks Altaf Mazid’s works. His simple narration of subjects is backed up by a researcher’s keen eye. He talks of the specific in a universally acceptable manner. No flourishes, he focuses on Assamese film industry with steadfastness and perseverance. Quite appropriately too, for an industry that is now celebrating its Platinum jubilee.
[25]
2008
(56th)
R. K. Bidur Singh Meitei
For taking the readers to a state little known to our film makers. He understands cinema like few others, bringing with him an open mindset that accepts the plurality of thought. He upholds the cause of regional film makers and his ability to focus on cultural relativity does not leave him even when he talks of international cinema. He loves films and it shows in his works.
2009
(57th)
C. S. Venkiteswaran Malayalam
For his response to the multiplicity inherent in the cinematic form from an evolved consciousness of the medium and a historical sense of its overt/subliminal ideologies, articulated in a controlled and expressive prose where the insight allows him to remain nonjudgmental and suggestive.
[26]
2010
(58th)
Joshy JosephEnglish
Joshy Joseph, essentially a filmmaker, proves to be an important critic as well, as he goes about writing on the most serious aspects of medium with wry humour and a lightness of touch that is difficult not to notice. His commitment to the documentary in particular sets him apart from many of those writing on cinema in this country.
[27]
2010
(58th)
N. Manu Chakravarthy  Kannada
 English
Professor Chakravarthy’s writings on film and related arts are replete with profound insights into the human condition as well as the need for serious discourse on socio-cultural matters. His writings reveal the authority with which he can discuss the cinemas of the world, particularly his own Kannada cinema.
2011
(59th)
Manoj Barpujari  Assamese
 English
For showing his understanding of the medium of cinema. His writings can be broadly classified into three areas :- (a) Discussion on objective of cinema, (b) The craft of cinema and (c ) Cinema in North-east India and Assamese. Barpujari emphasises the significance of craft and promotion of constructive cinema, i.e. cinema which is not only entertainment. He has a social perspective with cinematic and creative sensibility.
[28]
2012
(60th)
P. S. RadhakrishnanMalayalam
For its fresh and insightful analysis of the history, aesthetics and politics of cinema.
[29]
2013
(61st)
Alaka Sahani English
Through her articles published in 2013, film critic Alaka Sahani has highlighted facets of cinema beyond glamour and gossip by delving deeper into the contemporary relevance of iconic film makers, hunting down the remnants of yesteryear theatres in Mumbai, investigating the new lease of life given to documentary film makers by the Internet and by looking at film making on the other side of the border. The Jury recommends her for the award for the non-mainstream theme of her articles and the sensitivity with which she has presented these issues.
[30]
2014
(62nd)
Tanul ThakurEnglish
Tanul Thakur's work is like a breath of fresh air. In brevity lies the strength of Thakur’s analysis of crests and troughs of Indian cinema. Without being didactic, Thakur is able to provide a different perspective to seemingly disparate elements and string them together in a lucid fashion.
[31]
2015
(63rd)
Meghachandra Kongbam Meitei
Meghachandra Kongbom interprets the world of Indian cinema for his readers in Meitei. His lucid understanding and love for cinema makes him the ideal “Film Whisperer” in Manipur, where access to Indian films is often limited.
[32]
2016
(64th)
G. Dhananjayan Tamil
G. Dhananjayan's in-depth analysis on a wide range of topics such as film genres, brands, new strategies in movie watching, taxation impact and ticket pricing. His thought provoking essays raise relevant issues affecting the movie watcher as well as the filmmaker and suggests practical solutions
[33]
2017
(65th)
Giridhar JhaEnglish
Giridhar Jha has a keen eye on current cinema trends. In Lucid and simple English language, he writes about both popular and serious cinema with equal command. His writings cover vast horizon of Hindi cinema with authenticity and originality.
2018
(66th)
Blais JohnyMalayalam
The critic has written on a wide range of subjects, ranging from impact of identity & caste politics on cinema to the influence and importance of trailers, especially in the context of Tamil and Malayalam cinema. His in depth writing is well researched yet presented in a manner comprehensible to everyone.
2018
(66th)
Anant VijayHindi
His writing is well researched, embellished with anecdotes and is easy to read. His understanding of the contemporary sociopolitical nuances of Hindi cinema is reflected in his articles.
2019
(67th)
Sohini Chattopadhyay English
'
[34]

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