12 movies that explore generational gaps on Netflix, Prime Video, and Disney+ Hotstar

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Raise your hand if you feel the generation above you doesn’t ‘get you’. We’re guessing both your hands are raised! Be it boomers cringing at millennials' social media obsession or gen-Z calling them out on their side parting and skinny jeans, generational gaps are becoming more real than ever. From the Renee Sen-starrer Suttabaazi to Kajol's intergenerational family drama Tribhanga, check out our edit of Hollywood and Bollywood films that have striking portrayals of this phenomenon. 

Suttabaazi (2021)

She is harrowed with her daughter’s obsession with her phone and social media. The latter is irritated with her mother’s lack of understanding about matters that don’t concern her. But the rising social media star and her mother find a connection in the generation gap when they catch each other smoking on the terrace. Sushmita Sen’s daughter Renee made her acting debut as the rebellious teenager with this short film directed by Kabeer Khurana.  

Streaming on YouTube

The Intern (2015)

When 70-year-old widower Ben Whittaker (Robert de Niro) decides to become a senior intern at a fashion website, he forms an unlikely friendship with the website’s workaholic CEO, Jules Ostin (Anne Hathaway). Nancy Meyer’s directorial addresses the issue of multi-generations working in the same place and the enjoyable chemistry between Ben and Jules is proof that it works.

Streaming on Prime Video

Ek Ladki Ko Dekha Toh Aisa Laga (2019)

Real-life father and daughter Anil Kapoor and Sonam Kapoor play on-screen father-daughter in the movie directed by Shelly Chopra Dhar. Grounding-breaking in its own way, the lesbian love story is a sensitive attempt to show the ostracisation the queer go through and the loneliness they feel. While the rest of her large Punjabi family want her to adhere to societal norms, Sonam’s character Sweety finds solace in the pages of her diary and later, in her friendship with Rajkummar Rao’s character Sahil Mirza.

Streaming on Netflix

Boyhood (2014)

Filmed over a period of 12 years, Boyhood depicts the childhood and adolescence of Mason Evans Jr (Ellar Coltrane) as he grows up in Texas with his divorced parents. One of the many themes this film keenly observes is the generation gap that exists between the boy and his father, Mason Evans Sr played brilliantly by Ethan Hawke, who even received his fourth Academy Award nomination for his performance.  

Available to buy on Amazon Prime Video

Tribhanga–Tedhi Medhi Crazy (2021)

Encompassing three generations of a family, Tribhanga brings together the acting prowess of Tanvi Azmi, Kajol and Mithila Palkar. Nayantara (Azmi) is an acclaimed writer while her daughter Anuradha (Kajol) is an actor-dancer and a single mother. Her daughter (Masha) is married, pregnant and wants a life as normal as can be. The three couldn’t be more different if they tried, but a tragedy brings the dysfunctional family together to confront their situation.

Streaming on Netflix

Freaky Friday (2003)

What better way to understand each other’s perspective than by inhabiting each others’ bodies? That’s what happens to the constantly bickering mother-daughter duo of Jamie Lee Curtis and Lindsay Lohan when their bodies get switched for a day by a magical Chinese fortune cookie. When Tess (Curtis) wakes up as Anna (Lohan) and is forced to live the latter’s life, she starts to understand her daughter’s woes, just as Anna begins to get an inkling of what her mother is going through.  

Streaming on Disney + Hotstar Premium

Udaan (2010)

A terrific coming-of-age film by debutant director Vikramaditya Motwane, Udaan revolves around Rohan (Rajat Barmecha) who is forced to live with his oppressive, controlling father Bhairav Singh (Ronit Roy) after he is expelled from school. The sensitive depiction of their fraught relationship was appreciated by critics who hailed the movie for its direction and performances by the lead actors.   

Streaming on Netflix

Bend it Like Beckham (2002)

Jesminder Bhamra (Parminder Nagra) is the rebellious daughter in a British Indian Sikh household living in London. Her parents want her to toe the line and get married but Jess has plans of her own. She wants to become a soccer player, something her parents know nothing about and once they do, they do not approve of it at all. Will her conservative parents let her pursue her dreams?   

Available to buy on Amazon Prime Video

Piku (2015)

Hailed by critics as one of Deepika Padukone’s best performances, Shoojit Sircar’s directorial is about Piku (Padukone) and her father Bhashkor (Amitabh Bachchan), a cantankerous old man who obsesses over his stomach ailments. Without really realising it, he puts the burden of his health issues on his daughter’s shoulders. Behind the humour is a commentary on contemporary Indian women like Piku and the generation gap that exists with elderly parents. The film challenges the notion that independent women do not prioritise families.        

Available to buy on YouTube.com

Helicopter Eela (2018)

A single mother, Eela (Kajol) gives up all her dreams in order to raise her son Vivan (Riddhi Sen). But when life gives her another chance, she joins the same college as her son to complete her education. It is also a chance for her to spend more time with her son but the latter doesn’t necessarily share the same perspective.      

Streaming on Disney + Hotstar

Generation Gap (2008)

When angry young man Dylan (Alex Black) is sent to stay with his grandfather The Colonel (Edward Asner), a man he barely knows, sparks are bound to fly–and not necessarily the good kind. The crusty old grandfather might be old-fashioned but he is loving in his own way and by the end, the two do end up giving each other some important lessons in love.

Available to buy on Amazon Prime Video

Spring Forward (2000)

Director Tom Gilroy’s directorial debut revolves around ex-convict Paul (Liev Schreiber) and veteran groundskeeper Murphy (Ned Beatty) who form an unlikely friendship as they share personal crisis, ambitions and regrets. The movie was critically appreciated for the heart and depth the lead performers brought to the screenplay, winning the Gold award for Independent Theatrical Feature Films Drama at the 2000 WorldFest in Houston.   

Available to buy on Amazon Prime Video

 Also read:

15 movies that explore older romances on Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and more

9 shows and movies that will inspire you to be better, streaming on Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and JioCinema

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