Wanna go on a binge-watching spree with your sibling on Raksha Bandhan? Here's what to see!

'Drake and Josh', 'Bangalore Days', 'Ponniyin Selvan', and more.
Stills from the movies Frozen and Koode.
Stills from the movies Frozen and Koode.

After a fight, my teenage brother always used to come to me and say, "Chechi, I found a new show/movie for us to watch." That was his idea of a peace offering and the softie that I was (still am), I always caved in. Minutes into the movie, I would totally forget why we had even fought. This Raksha Bandhan, I have picked some of my personal favourite shows and movies about sibling relationships that you can watch with your brothers and sisters.

Grab some popcorn, throw in some pillows and be prepared for some mushiness and tears as you binge on this watchlist.

1. Lilo and Stitch (2002): A timeless Disney classic movie that I grew up watching with my baby bro and loved. The film explores the bond between an orphaned Hawaiian girl, Lilo, her older sister Nani, and an extraterrestrial being. The film's poignant message "Ohana (Hawaiian) means family. Family means nobody gets left behind or forgotten" has continued to stay with me to date. 

(PLATFORM: Disney+Hotstar)

2. Drake and Josh (2004-2007): A TV series on two teenagers with diametrically different personalities become step brothers. One is an awkward geek and the other a popular musician. Now, they must learn to live under the same roof while they go through high school. The two boys are often involved in comedic escapades while also handling various teenage issues. There is also a sister involved in case two siblings weren't enough. One of those go-to shows that I can always rewatch with my brother for laughs.

3. Spy Kids (2001): The story of this movie revolves around two kids Carmen and Juni Cortez who go from being typical bickering siblings to discovering their mom and dad are actually two of the greatest spies ever. Now their parents have disappeared, and the two have to work together to outwit the enemy and bring their parents home. I remember how realistic their fights seemed to my brother and me. And when not fighting, we used to imagine we were cool kids to spy parents and play games with gadgets lying around.

4. Bangalore Days (2014): This Malayalam film is a fun rollercoaster ride about three cousins Aju, Divya and Kuttan who arrive in Bangalore to dream, discover and explore. Through all the hurdles in their personal lives, they stick together, and are as close as best friends. My brother and I too are extremely attached to our cousins and this film always brings forth a wave of memories we shared with them.

(PLATFORM: Disney+Hotstar)

5. Koode (2018): The Prithviraj Sukumaran-Nazriya Nazim starrer portrays the beautiful bond between an older brother and younger sister who have an age gap. I am seven years older than my brother and could relate to their bond. Koode explores some sensitive and disturbing topics like death and grief but it also has plenty of feel-good moments. 

(PLATFORM: Disney+Hotstar)

6. This Is Us (2016-2022): A deeply cathartic show about a set of triplets, Kevin, Kate and Randall, who are trying to get over a tragedy in their past. What is special about their bond is that they are not only each others' pillars of support but they are their biggest critics as well. Initially, I found it hard to like Kevin as he was a difficult person but there is a story behind all of their actions which when revealed made me empathise with him. Personally, I could strongly relate to how comparisons between siblings can affect them.

(PLATFORM: Disney+Hotstar)

7. Dil Dhadakne Do (2015): Sometimes the only sane person in a dysfunctional family is your sibling. Ranveer Singh (Kabir Mehra) and Priyanka Chopra Jonas (Ayesha Mehra) are two such siblings in this rollercoaster family drama set on a cruise ship. The chaos during family trips is one I am sure we will all relate to. What is heartwarming is how the two are super-protective of each other, especially when their parents and partners are being insensitive towards them. 

(PLATFORM: Netflix/Amazon Prime Video)

8. Children of Heaven (1997): This Iranian family drama by Majid Majidi is about a boy Ali who loses his sister Zahra's pair of shoes, and cannot afford to buy her new ones and therefore enters into a competition. He is portrayed to be incredibly resourceful and responsible despite being a little kid himself. Their innocence and deep love for each other really touched me.

9. Frozen (2013): How many times has a princess been saved by a prince’s 'kiss of true love'? This Disney movie shatters that stereotype. It is not romantic love but platonic, unconditional sibling love that saves the day here. With support from her sister Princess Anna, Princess Elsa is able to learn to manage her magical powers that seem out of control and rise to become the queen she’s destined to be. What I liked is that while they may not have seen eye to eye on certain things, they still had each others' backs.

(PLATFORM: Disney+Hotstar)

10. Ponniyin Selvan Pt 1 and 2 (2022, 2023): The two-part film about a power struggle during the Chozha rule between ADs 900 and 950 is not your typical sibling relationship drama but it also is as realistic as it can get. The dynamic between royal siblings played by Trisha, Vikram, and Jayam Ravi explores how complicated love and family can be. Honour, loyalty, jealousy, betrayal, revenge and more are themes explored in this period film.

(PLATFORM: Amazon Prime Video)

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