‘From Raja Babu’ (1994) to ‘Haseena Maan Jaayegi’ (1999) –these are the 15 best films of Govina in which he worked at the peak of his powers.
1. Raja Babu (1994)
Raja Babu (Govinda) is a poor orphan adopted by a wealthy village couple (Kadar Khan and Aruna Irani). He is a typical country bumpkin, good-hearted but lacking in urban manners.
He falls for Madhu (Karishma Kapoor) when he sees her photograph in a studio and chases her on his bike decorated with plastic flowers with his sidekick, played by Shakti Kapoor.
Taken in by his smart appearance and impressive talks, she reciprocates his love but walks out on him with all villagers watching when she learns that he is no match to her urbane, well-educated self.
2. Deewana Mastana
Raja is a minor league crook who sells railway tickets on the black market at Amirpur station. Tired of his job he looks for new ways to make a quick buck.
One day, along with his friend Ghafoor and a police inspector, he robs Rs 2.5 million from the railway treasury. Later, Raja and Ghafoor bump off the inspector and run away with the loot to Bombay.
At Bombay airport, Raja sets eyes on Dr Neha and promptly falls in love with the psychiatrist, for that’s what she is. Raja and Ghafoor quickly find out where she lives.
3. Coolie No. 1 (1995)
In order to avenge his insult against wealthy Hoshiarchand Choudhary; Pandit Shaadiram Gharjodhe asks Raju; a coolie by profession to masquerade as a wealthy business tycoon so that he can get marry to Choudhary’s daughter Malti.
Choudhary does accept the match and the wedding of Raju and Malti are celebrated. After the wedding Raju will find that he might as well have to pretend all his life as gradually Choudhary begins to suspect him especially when he gets caught by Choudhary at the bus station working as a coolie.
4. Hero No. 1 (1997)
Two young Indians, Meena and Rajesh, meet in Europe and fall in love with each other, promising to get married when they return back to India.
When they return home, Rajesh tells his dad about Meena, and they go to meet with Meena’s dad. During this meeting, both fathers get into an argument, and refuse to permit the young couple to get married. No amount of persuasion gets them to change their minds.
Then Rajesh, with Meena’s help, decides to work as a servant in Meena’s household – with a view of winning over her father, and thus finding a solution to their wedding problems. Will Rajesh succeed in fooling Meena’s shrewd father?
5. Saajan Chale Sasural (1996)
Naive villager Shyamsunder, who sings, comes to Bombay to try his luck with Bollywood and wealth. He ends up on the streets, playing for small alms.
He meets with another musician, Muthu Swami, and both attempt to meet the owner of Tips Cassettes, Mr. Khurana, for an audition, in vain though. Then one day, Shyamsunder meets beautiful Divya, the only daughter of Mr. Khurana, and both fall in love with each other.
Divya would like to marry Shyamsunder, and also further his career. What she does not know is that Shyamsunder loves another woman from his village by the name of Pooja, who he has promised to marry.
Pooja arrives in the city, and with Divya already present there, Shyamsunder and Muthu Swami invent a look-alike of Shyamsunder, with hilarious results.
6. Shola Aur Shabnam (1992)
The spoiled and arrogant brother, Bali, of notorious gangster, Kali Baba, enlists in the National Cadet Corps, and wants to have his way with his fellow-students and trainer, Inder Mohan Lahti, with comical results.
When he meets Divya Thapa for the first time, he is smitten by her, and wants to marry her by hook or by crook. But Divya is in love with Karan, and both plan to marry each other.
Circumstances act against them, and they flee together, with Kali Baba’s men, and Divya’s Police Commissioner dad, Yashpal Thapa, in hot pursuit, to an unknown destination, surrounded by a web of lies, deception, and no known resource to assist them.
7. Haseena Maan Jaayegi (1999)
Wealthy Seth Amirchand (Kader Khan) has two problems, namely his two good-for-nothing sons, Sonu (Sanjay Dutt), and Monu (Govinda). Their time is mainly spent on comically attempting to extort money from their hapless dad, by hook or by crook, by threats or blackmail. Amirchand decides that the best way to deal with them is to separate them, he then asks Sonu to proceed to Goa; and Monu to look after work in Bombay.
Sonu gets to the wrong party in Goa and antagonizes the Verma family, consisting of Gulzarilal (Anupam Kher), his unmarried sister, Santho (Aruna Irani), and eligible daughters, Pooja (Pooja Batra) and Ritu (Karisma Kapoor).
Sonu challenges the family that he is going to marry Pooja by any means possible, and calls upon Monu to act as his Paternal uncle, which he does so, and ends up falling for Ritu. Unknown to him, Santho has also developed a crush on him.
8. Dulhe Raja (1998)
Poor Raja opens a fast food restaurant right opposite a five star hotel run by it’s owner Singhania, earning his wrath. The wealthy hotel owner uses all his influence to remove Raja, but in vain. Things get worse for the wealthy man, when his daughter Kiran wants to marry the poor hotelier.
The wealthy man refuses, leading to a confrontation and a condition – which Raja fulfills, he becomes rich virtually overnight, and proposes for the hand of Kiran. The wealthy hotelier reluctantly accepts him as his son-in-law, only to have Kiran elope with a man named Rahul.
9. Hatya (1988)
After the passing away of his wife, Sheila, and child, Raja, Sagar takes to drinking as well as singing and dancing at weddings and special occasions. Intoxicated heavily after one such event, he comes across a young male child lying in a garbage can, and takes him home.
He subsequently comes to know that the child, who he decides to name Raja, is deaf-mute since birth, and decides to adopt him. Sagar’s life will be turned upside down when a wealthy businessman, Kailash Nath, files a police complaint alleging that Raja is his grandson, and Sagar may have abducted and killed Raja’s mom.
10. Bade Miyan Chote Miyan
Arjun and Pyare Mohan are honest policemen who work together. Trouble follows when thieves Bade Miyan and Chote Miyan, look-alikes of Arjun and Pyare, commit crimes and the hapless duo are blamed for it.
11. Jodi No. 1 (2001)
Partners in crime Jai and Veeru set their next target on a rich businessman, Rai Bahadur. Things turn hilarious when both of them fall for his daughters.
12. Bhagam Bhag (2006)
The members of a drama troupe fall in trouble when they are framed for a murder. Things go worse when they find their actress committing suicide, which is somehow linked with the murder.
A dockworker overthrows the tyranny of a cruel gangster but has to run away to make a new life for himself and his brothers. Fifteen years later, his past catches up with him as his old enemy resurfaces.
14. Partner (2007)
The only male child in the family that sired six daughters, Prem has empathy towards the fair sex and decides to assist males to woo women so much so that he becomes popular as the ‘Love Guru’. Amongst the men he assists are Bhaskar Chaudhry and Neil Bakshi. Klutz-like Bhaskar has fallen head over heels with his boss, a model and heiress, Priya Jaisingh. A disbelieving Prem refuses to assist him, but subsequently relents. Bhaskar uses his own charm to woo Priya successfully, and is introduced to her dad, Raj. Prem himself falls in love with a widowed single mother, Naina Shahani, a Journalist. Both men are satisfied with her respective lives not knowing that a scandalous secret will surface in the media – changing their lives forever.
15. Kyo Kii Main Jhuth Nahin Bolta
It’s about a lawyer who succeeds professionally by constant lying. His persistent dishonesty infuriates his wife, who threatens to leave him if he doesn’t straighten out. Fearful of his parents’ divorce, Raj’s son wishes that his father could not lie, and creates a sort of curse that prevents Raj from speaking anything but the truth.