Qayamat se Qayamat tak

Quit fighting my dear Thakurs! If there is any Rajput/Thakur movie made the premise will always be family feud. Two Thakur families daughter of one either runs away or is not able to marry the boy from other resulting in years and years of animosity. Qayamat Se Qayamat tak is no different in this matter; Aamir and Juhi; the youth of feuding families these two want to end the curse. That they are in love with each other is a another coincidence in all similar movies.

So what makes this movie special? It was different because of the actors it gave us. Fresh faces of the lead actors, their innocence and the efforts puts behind it. You cannot help but admire the effort they put to make the movie memorable. The movie has melodious songs and a tear drop is guaranteed at the end. This one is for remembering good old times.

 

 

 

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Padosan

Perfect film for lifting your spirits! This one entertains, entertains…entertains. Sunil Dutt takes up a non-conventional role and a villager get up and does justice. As Bhola he is so naïve and charming. (Watch his  Mujhe Jeene Do for a contrast!)

Saira Banu is beautiful. When she croons Bhai Battur; in the bathtub she is super sexy. She leaves no  stone unturned  to make Bhola jealous of Masterji. She is the center of attraction in the film and her casting is justified.

Kishore Kumar when not playing the hero goes extra mile and that is the beauty of Padosan (and Pyaar Kiye Jaa). When he sings…

‘Meri pyaari Bindu…meri bholi Bindu…meri matheri bindu…meri sindoori bindu…’ it entertainment par excellence.

Mehmood with his getup of Masterji and his ‘Ek Chatur Naar…’ keeps you in splits. The face-off between masterji and Bhola is well crafted and gives you some cult classics. After all it is Manna Dey and Kishore Kumar. Manna Dey is a delight in this film!

The story is a little different too where Mama and Bhanja both want to marry the same girl.

Padosan is worth your time…as many times you watch it.

‘Ghoda…chatur…ghoda chatur….’

 

Omkara

Othello is adapted and is handled beautifully by Vishal Bhardwaj. Vishal has a solid understanding of treatment such films need. He gets the pulse right and does not let go of the audience interest. And if he is involved in the film’s music then you get a winner.

Ajay Devgan, lets his eyes do the talking. Not a big fan of his action movies I was impressed first with him in Zakhm. He restored my faith in ‘Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam’ and then sealed the deal with Omkara. A man in love cursed by the girl’s father; he is powerful enough to usurp a dynasty but weak to succumb to hearsay. Ajay delivers a power packed performance and you feel for the guy.

Kareena Kapoor as the misfit Desdemona with Othello; looks her part. She is beautiful and headstrong and wears a color that compliments her character and looks…white mostly in the film.

Konkana, Bipasha and Vivek do justice to their roles but it is Saif Ali Khan who takes the cake. Ishwar, addressed as langda due to his limp, is spiteful and dark. His inferiority complex, coupled with his insecurity make the film’s narrative crisp. He plots, he seethes, he kills and smiles all like a true actor. Saif found his calling with this film!(Not to mention he even had THE Desdemona in real life later).

I know ‘Bidi jalaile …’ is the famous and acclaimed one and one cannot get enough of Bipasha; but my favorite is ‘Zubaan pe Laaga…’ What a song!  When Rekha sings ‘Raat bhar chhhana chhana re…’ hear her out…she is awesome.

Ah but for kamar and kamarbandhs; there would have not been any wars….

 

Nadiya ke Paar (1982)

New movies can be made on old stories, some may outdo the old ones too…but I love originals always. I will never take credit from Madhuri Dixit for what she did to Hum Aapke Hain Kaun; I am in fact one of her fans and would have reviewed Mrityudand had ‘M’ not been booked for Smita. If you can fall in love with simplicity and Bhojpuri you will love this movie, if you cannot; watch it and fall in love.

This film also scores as actors become characters. Sachin remained untapped in hindi films due to his innocent looks that typecast him for only some roles. He can deliver with ease and in Satte Pe Satta he clearly outshines Amitabh.  He speaks slowly at times and is like a machine gun when exited, he reminds me of Kaka (Rajesh Khanna) when he delivers his dialogues.

The movie belongs to him…Sadhna Singh as Gunja is powerful…but Chandan stays with you.

Chandan falls in love with his Bhauji’s sister and little pranks they play on each other blossoms into love. In trying times though love is to be sacrificed for duty and new relationships should be forged with grace and ease. The mind understands …ah but for the heart…

The songs of the movie are beautiful….hummable and are overflowing with simplicity.

‘Kaun disa me leke chala re…’ is one and ‘Sachi kahe tohre…’ is the other.

Watch the song ‘Jogi ji dheerey dheerey’ to get the idea of village holi fun. Yes men and women were supposed to play holi separately unlike ‘dushman bhi gale mil jate hain …’ in other film villages.

This film is sweet and an apt window to the village life in North India.

Mirch Masala

My hands were twitching to write about this film. It wins over Manthan(the other competitor) for various reasons; two main ones  being:

1) Awaaz – I am a big fan of voice modulation. And this one offers more than Smita Patil and Naseer, it has Suresh Oberoi. If there is anything that guy can outdo others in, it is dialogues and then Raj Babbar…killer. If you hear them speak ever in any film you watch next, you will know what I mean.  Not to forget Om Puri and Deepti Naval…all dubbing experts

2) Climax- While Manthan is predictable, Mirch Masala keeps you riveted.

Coming to the movie, a pre independence movie; Subedar ruled the villages. Not as evil as the British, they meant well partly….you can catch that in Naseer’s eyes ever so subtly in the scenes. His gramophone keeps him loved even with his tyrannical ways .He carries his moustache and Jodhpuri Safas and pants with style. The lust for Sonbai borders on love and that makes this role absolutely praiseworthy.

Om Puri as the old gatekeeper of a different religion brings in the right balance in this film. He loves the women as his own sisters and daughters and takes the bullet for them. The ONLY man in the village to stand against the system. An impactful performance considering the duration of his role.

Smita Patil can lend justice to all such roles so I am too small to write anything about this actress. She is the best and a success story for all those who keep crying hoarse about Bollywood’s fixation for skin color and for those heroines who were dusky till like yesterday and are almost white today!

My Trivia: I have been associated with a village till date. I have lived there too. Women will NEVER wear backless choli even in the confines of their bedroom. Some creative liberties should be overlooked!

Mirch Masala is one cool movie. It does not shout about feminism from roof tops or ‘expects’ things from society, it preaches taking things into your hands, standing united and finding a solution. Womenfolk let’s do that; be there for each other…it helps.

 

Lagaan

I am a big movie buff. Movies just have that effect on me, they make me live the characters and give me things I can cling on to. Long after a movie has ended I keep thinking of how it could have be differently made, the actors could have acted better, music, editing; everything remains with me It would be difficult to choose one movie but I am happy to share the one that changed me the most. Be it a rerun on satellite Television or watching clips on YouTube, the movie I cannot get enough of is Lagaan!

Lagaan, a movie where Mr. Perfectionist is the protagonist, the ‘heroine’ was a newbie and most of the second half was …well a cricket match!

Prior to Lagaan; like all dreamy eyed teenage girls; my favorite sport was Lawn Tennis. I wept to bed when Andre Agassi lost and admired Pete Sampras win one title after the other. Tennis was the glamourous one and cricket was the desi one; also tennis was for us girls while cricket was for boys. Cricket had me all confused with long on, gully, LBW and what not!

I had actually bunked my school to watch Lagaan. It was less because of the movie theme and more because of hot abs of Aamir!

The best thing about a well-made movie is besides you get the paisawasool feeling you think the movie should have been longer. This movie had the exact effect on me. Songs just came at the right time…. devotional, romantic, motivational all of them! It was a very secular and progressive film too with the team having people from all over India. I loved the way Kachra for one was accepted as part of the cricket team and the society. A subtle and strong message! The performances were such that I really thought of the era being pre-independence while Aamir was really the gareeb kisan—Bhuvan.

The movie changed my perspective towards our nation’s most loved sport—cricket! Second half of the movie had me nail biting and understanding all the little things about the game. It seemed as though the winning of Bhuvan and his team meant everything to me. I wept when they sang ‘O palanhaare…!’ I jumped in the hall when they hit a boundary; I loved the word ‘daud’ for runs! So much thought was put to create an absolute masterpiece.

Post Lagaan, I started following cricket often and became an ardent lover. My craze became an obsession, so much so that I even watched reruns of matches between Bangladesh and Zimbabwe!

I have never got the opportunity (read free passes) to watch a game live, but that does not make me any less a fan! I paint the tricolor as nail art, and burst crackers and clap out loud when Virat completes his 50, 100 (I also clap for Shikhar Dhawan, it is not related to good looks I assure you). But I am not a stupid fan; I mean I don’t post on facebook after every 10 overs knowing fully well that those interested are watching the game and those not, well they won’t care.

But my cricket craze is also turning into nightmare for my family and friends. The day of an important cricket match is filled with excuses to take day off from work and kitchen. If the match happens to be between India and Pakistan then there are several things that happen: totkas are adhered to, like wearing pink, not watching match from 20 to 25 overs, leaving the balcony door open and eating Chinese no matter what etc. (yes I am seriousJ)!

Once two monkeys entered from our balcony and we had a human versus monkey match at home; they pounced on all my furniture and even raided my fridge! On another occasion the Chinese food had to be ordered from such an expensive restaurant that my husband suggested that the cable bill would be unpaid for at least 6 months. Lagaan has made me patriotic cricket lover and with a loving family to back me, it has made me happier J

 

Khubsoorat

Kaayda Kaayda aakhir Faydaa!

Khubsoorat is light, entertaining and it comes with a powerful message. Discipline is required and adherence to rules is expected, but a little enjoyment should be part of our lives.  Hrishikesh Mukherjee delivers another winner with this film!

Rekha is a revelation in the film. She carries the film on her shoulders and lends credibility to a role which nobody else could have portrayed better. She is beautiful, naughty, bubbly and sensitive and speaks non-stop. I wonder how many would have fallen in love with her when the film must have released in the early eighties. Dina Pathak plays the so called antagonist and is so much at ease. Whenever I watch this movie, I thank God that my Mom was not like HER. And I am old enough to understand this is a movie and she was just playing her part…..that is her aura in the film. Ashol kumar as the benevolent old man fond of gardening reminds you of your own grandfather. Such a contrasting role in comparison to yesterday’s Jewel Thief!

The story is simple; that of a disciplinarian and of a rebel. The rebel happens to be from outside of family and trusts she is doing everything for ‘Nirmal Anand’. Manju convinces all the family members to have little fun and that it is alright to be a little off at times. They all come around and have this great performance on ‘saare Niyam Tod do!..’ what happens later takes a little serious tone and has the film’s message.

The Kafia milana …kathak…toda..tabla…apple kheer…small things that stay with you long after the movie has ended. A smile throughout the movie is guaranteed. Some films should not be remade and this one was in that category…only good thing is, the new one gave us Fawad Khan.

Watch KhubSoorat for Rekha and if not for her, my recently realized favorite David.

 

 

 

Jewel Thief

Jewel Thief is my favorite con movie. It is smart, slick and has wow factor. Vijay Anand was a master storyteller (another great thriller he did was Teesri Manzil). The best part of the movie is; it feels like we are watching too many stories together with the diverse settings and colorful characters. The film has beautiful locations and thumbs up to that!

Dev Anand has dual role, one likes diamonds and the other likes to solve mysteries.  He gets to know there is someone who looks exactly like him, and this person is a mischief maker. He steals, robs, cheats women and leads a good life. Naturally this Dev Anand wants to be that one…look above for his two roles.  He gets bonus gorgeous ladies in the so called don’s den. (What more could he have asked for…solving mystery be damned!)

Ashok Kumar lends an able support and does justice to his role. Tanuja looks great and plays her part. VaijantiMala brings magic with her ‘Hothon pe aisi baat’ (is there a better graceful dancer?)

The movie has absolutely fantastic songs and this is a Navketan film so the way they are shot is a treat. The fiancé, number of toes, Amar, diamonds may sound confusing and difficult to knit a yarn…yet it is done gracefully and beautifully.

The film has small bits that add to building the character of Amar and that is the beauty of this thriller. Watch Anju Mahendru swim up to Vinay and count his number of toes…or look at VaijantiMala stray alone in a boat overcome with grief…

Even when we know the mystery the film is a pleasure and the best part is it ends with the bad men also laughing away, now that is a new right?

 

Iss Raat ki Subah Nahi

If you have to name just one movie that was a game changer for thrillers, this would be it. Fast paced; it delivers to its name and in a single night the confusion all around keeps you riveted.  I never liked the looks of Nirmal Pandey (where is he?); be it any film…he always comes across as scary. But in this one he is the one who is scared and how well he is able to portray that with his exact opposite personality.

The triangular love story entwined with underworld, presented in a well-crafted plot.  The background music keeps you riveted! Sudhir Mishra has made a landmark movie of sorts and this movie came before the popular underworld movie Satya. Ashish Vidyarthi and Saurabh Shukla have delivered a fine performance. And the award winning song Jeevan Kya Hai stays with you for long!

One of the few Bollywood films that have this thriller Hollywood touch! Watch it again and then go for the sequel Ye Sali Zindagi. As for the leading ladies and their performance:

Chup tum raho..chup hum rahein….’ ( super-hot Madhavan..YES!)

Hum Dono

Here is one film that I am a big fan of. One of the few identical twin stories; which is not comical.(Mera Saya is another excellent one) This movie scores on one ‘Major’ front; acting. Dev Anand plays the lead as Mahesh and Major Verma; and when I first saw the film; I said at the end “Major Verma ka role bahut kam tha” and I did not mean the character but the actor. Such is his disparate performance that you will be forced to believe two actors have played the roles.

Many of you might not have seen it or might have forgotten about it; I will not give out the story.

Dev Anand is drool worthy! When he sings  ‘Main zindagi ka saath nibhata chala gaya’; you may be forced to think smoking is cool. And when he croons ‘Abhi na jao chhod ke’ you want the movie to run forever. Ok I know it is Mohammad Rafi doing the talking (singing) but who cares when you have a suave dapper guy on screen.

The heroines look resplendent especially in the songs; that is a Nav Ketan specialty (Remember Guide?).  This movie may seem to run on a languid pace, but the dilemma Mahesh faces keeps you entrapped and you feel for not only him, but all the characters of the film. ‘Kabhi khud pe kabhi halaat pe rona aaya’

This is vintage at its best. Watch it for me and let me know.

Trivia: It is now available in color too. If you are not the black and white movie types, this should be your motivation for watching it.