R.I.P Dev Anand

December 4, 2011

I went to office this morning, totally unaware of Dev Anand’s demise. I was little early today and only one of my teammates was in.  The conversation that followed was –
Me : Hi, Good Morning
Him : Good Morning. How was your weekend?
Me : It was great! Couldn’t have asked for a better one. How was yours?
Him : Was working both the days. Watched any movies? Saw Desi Boys?
Me : Nahhhh….I watch very selected new movies. I’m happier with my old black and white collection
Him : Is it?
Me : Yup and the next new movie I’m gonna watch is Don 2
Him : Ok…if you are so much into old films then there’s a sad news for you
Me : Sad news? What happened?
Him : Dev Anand is no more
Me : What? How can that be….When? How?
Him : I dont know the details

By then I had switched my laptop on and the first thing I did was to read the news. All that I could say was – this year’s been so unfortunate! Coming to think of it, they had turned old and fragile, were suffering and in pain. They’ve been relieved from all the worldly sufferings and have gone to be reunited with their old friends. But it’s not that easy to accept it, though we all know that death is the final destination, that all our lives come to an end someday. We’ve seen them and known all our lives,   ever since we can remember and all of a sudden we read that they are no more. It’s like losing a family member.

The only movie of Dev Anand that I have with me at the moment is Namoona but it was late by the time I got back home from work, so couldn’t watch it. May be some time later during the week…I had made a list of 10 songs but it’s already past midnight and it’ll take time to search for youtube links. So, keeping up the trend of last 3 days, here’s one song picturised on Dev sahab in Rafi’s voice.

I didn’t know that this song existed until I watched the movie and saw the song. And had completely forgotten about it until I heard it again on Vividh Bharati this afternoon on Dev Anand special Sadabahar Nagme. It has it’s own charm and it’s cute.

It’s from Love Marriage (1959), written by Shailendra, composed by Shankar Jaikishan, sung by Rafi and picturised on Dev Anand and Mala Sinha.

Lara lara la  
(Kahan jaa rahe the, kahan aa gaye hum – 2
Kisi ki nigahone se – 2
Takra gaye hum – 2) – 2

Kho chale saare nishan, main yahan dil hai kahan – 2
Soye hai ke jaage, chakra gaye hum – 2
Kisi ki nigahone se – 2
Takra gaye hum – 2
Kahan jaa rahe the

Lara lara la  ho ho ho….. Lara lara la  

Yeh subah masti bhari, yun hanse jaise pari – 2
Kismat ko shayad, yaad aa gaye hum – 2
Kisi ki nigahone se – 2
Takragaye hum – 2
Kahan jaa rahe the

Ajnabee apna hua, sach mera sapna hua – 2
Saare jahan pe, lo chha gaye hum – 2
Kisi ki nigahone se – 2
Takragaye hum – 2
(Kahan jaa rahe the, kahan aa gaye hum – 2
Kisi ki nigahone se – 2
Takra gaye hum – 2) – 2
Kahan jaa rahe the

Lara lara la  ho ho ho…..hmm hmm hmm….. Lara lara la  Lara lara la

You will live in our memories forever! RIP, Dev Anand!


Rafi Fest – Us paar iss deewar ke jo rehte hai

December 3, 2011

I was introduced to this song not as recently as the last two songs, but a couple of months ago. I saw and heard it first when Nasir saab had shared it on his wall on facebook. And for me it was love at first sight. I was completely floored by it! I must have listened to it non-stop for 10-15 times.

It’s from 1951 film Saiyan, composed by Sajjad Hussain and written by D.N Madhok. It’s picturized on Sajjan and Madhubala. Madhubala has a raw and rustic appeal, and she looks so beautiful, as always. But it’s Sajjan who steals the show!  I haven’t seen much of Sajjan in movies, but I instantly fell in love with him in this song.  His dance, expressions, the way he’s carried himself throughout the song….is just wow! The energy level, style and attitude in Rafi’s voice and Sajjan’s onscreen antics is simply superb!!!  Each word is crisp and to the point and unlike most of the songs where picturization doesn’t live upto the greatness of the song, this, I feel is one complete entertainment package – awesome lyrics, amazing music, flawless singing, beautifully picturized – over all,  very well delivered! Though I keep wondering what he’s upto at 1:54, it just adds to the craziness of the song.

And this song never fails to bring a smile on my face.

Us paar iss deewar ke jo rehte hai – 2
Koi kehde unse jaake jo hum kehte hai
Oh oh oh oh….

Us paar iss deewar ke jo rehte hai
Koi kehde unse jaake jo hum kehte hai
Oh oh oh oh….

Barbaad jawani na kijiye
Dil le lijiye dil de dijiye
Yeh din aur tanhayi haye – 2
Haye re kaun yeh samjhay
Nis rahi na rahe yeh jawani hum sach kehte hai

Koi kehde unse jaake jo hum kehte hai
Oh oh oh oh….

Us paar iss deewar ke jo rehte hai
Koi kehde unse jaake jo hum kehte hai
Oh oh oh oh…..

Aawaaz jawani deti hai
Dekho angdaai leti hai
Ghut ke mar jayenge armaan -2
Kahe ki jhijhak hai aao yahan
Nis rahi na rahe yeh jawani hum sach kehte hai
Koi kehde unse jaake jo hum kehte hai
Oh oh oh oh….

Us paar iss deewar ke jo rehte hai
Koi kehde unse jaake jo hum kehte hai
Oh oh oh oh…..

(Yeh husn diya jisne tumko
Poochega woh ek din yeh sunlo)  – 2
Bande pe mere kyun zulm kiya – 2
Ek jhalak dikhla ke maar diya
Lajja mein doob maroge hum sach kehte hai
Koi kehde unse jaake jo hum kehte hai
Oh oh oh oh….

Us paar iss deewar ke jo rehte hai
Koi kehde unse jaake jo hum kehte hai
Oh oh oh oh…..

Rafi Fest – Baharon ne chheda khushi ka taraana

December 3, 2011

This is one of those songs that I had randomly come across on youtube one fine day. The first time I heard it, it reminded me of Aaj unse pehle mulaqat hogi from Paraya Dhan. All thanks to the lyrics  – Meri aaj unse mulaquat hogi!

This song is from a movie named Majboori. And as per the discussion on hamaraforums and comments on youtube, it was released in 1985. There’s one link on youtube which says this song’s from an unreleased film called Aansoo. I have neither seen the movie nor the video of this song. So, I have no clue as to who it was picturized on or the situation in which it was sung. Tried searching on google about the film, but couldn’t find much. Anyways, who cares! Half the time videos of great songs turn out to be disasters. And at the moment I am just happy listening to the song.

It’s composed by Roshan Lal and penned by Aish Kanwal.  Music is catchy and lyrics is amusing but for me it’s Rafi who has woven  anticipation, anxiety and excitement of meeting someone so beautifully in the song.

Baharon ne chheda khushi ka taraana – 2
Meri aaj unse mulaquat hogi – 2
Baharon ne chheda khushi ka taraana

Salaam-e-mohabbat main unse kahoonga – 2
Tarana wafa ka sunake rahunga
Dil ko yakeen woh baat meri maan jaayenge – 2
Baharon ne chheda khushi ka taraana – 2

Mohabbat ki raahon mein jeene se pehle – 2
Lagaunga unko main seene se pehle
Woh pyaar ke ikraar ko pechchaan jayenge – 2
Baharon ne chheda khushi ka taraana – 2

Muqqadar se aaye mulaquat ke din…
Muqqadar se aaye mulaquat ke din
Yeh din bhi hai unke inayat ke din
Hum aaj banke husn ke mehmaan jaayenge – 2

Baharon ne chheda khushi ka taraana – 2
Meri aaj unse mulaquat hogi – 2
Baharon ne chheda khushi ka taraana

Rafi Fest – Jinki tasveer nigahon mein liye phirta hoon

December 1, 2011

With Rafi’s Birth Anniversary going on, there’s Rafi fest going on everywhere – groups on facebook, Rafi Foundation Hyderabad Chapter.

I was listening to one song today, and found the lyrics so interesting that I thought of sharing it here. But with the fest already in air, I thought of starting a series here as well. I will post one song (along with it’s lyrics) by Rafi everyday whole of this month. It’s a herculean task to pick up just one song a day, but I’m restricting myself to songs that I’ve come across only in the recent past, songs which are new to me.

Though I mentioned about a song with funny lyrics above, it’ll feature sometime later here. For today, the song is Jinki tasveer nigahon mein liye phirta hoon from Husn Aur Ishq (1966).

How I came across it – I was listening to radio few weeks ago and heard Hum tere bin jee na sakenge sanam from Thakur Jarnail Singh composed by Ganesh. With all the posts on Shrota Biradari on lesser known composers and dustedoff’s post on Celebrating the Uncelebrated, I have started paying extra attention to lyricist and music composers while listening to songs these days. So, I started searching for all songs composed by Ganesh and came across this. Though Hum tere bin jee na sakenge sanam is quite popular and I had heard few songs from Smuggler, the other compositions of his were relatively new to me.

And ever since I’v heard and seen this song, it’s kind of stayed with me.  Be it Rafi’s ‘Haye’, Sanjeev Kumar’s mad act or it’s catchy tune – I just love it all!

This lovely song is penned by Ashad Bhopali, composed by Ganesh and picturised on Sanjeev Kumar and L.Vijayalakshmi.  It’s romantic, has little ‘Aawara’ quotient to it and is full of pyaar and masti. As always, Rafi has rendered it so beautifully, has put life and emotions to the lyrics. I  especially love the way ‘Dekho badli hawaein zamane ki and Dekho maangi dua jinhe paane ki‘ parts are sung.

So, here it goes –

Chal hatt  aawara kahin ka…

Jinki tasveer nigahon mein liye phirta hoon – 2
Woh yeh kehte hai aawaara hai, deewana hai
Jinki tasveer nigahon mein liye phirta hoon
Woh yeh kehte hai aawaara hai, deewana hai

Phoolon sa chehra hai, sharmili aankhen hai
Nukili palke, ‘haye’…..
Dil ko tarsi hai, bechain balkhai
Yeh kali zulfen
Dekho badli hawaein zamaane ki
Yeh sazaa hai suno dil lagaane ki

Jinki tasveer nigahon mein liye phirta hoon – 2
Woh yeh kehte hai aawaara hai, deewana hai

Dilruba, yeh haseen, chaand bhi dhal gaya
Yeh baahein tarse,
Saason ki garmi se, tan badan jal gaya
Yeh aankhen barse
Dekho maangi dua jinhe paane ki
Wohi baatein kare hai jalaane ki

Jinki tasveer nigahon mein liye phirta hoon – 2
Woh yeh kehte hai aawaara hai, deewana hai

Rockstar (2011)

November 18, 2011

At the beginning of this year, I had made up my mind to watch at least two films in theater – Rockstar and Don 2. Not that I didnt watch any other films in theater this year, in fact ended up watching lot more than I usually do. But when this film got released last week, I had to see it somehow and that too before somebody else could tell me the story. And I had more than one reason for watching this film – it’s Shammi Kapoor’s last film, has Ranbir Kapoor(though I almost committed suicide watching Anjaana Anjaani, I still love this guy) and is directed by Imtiaz Ali. So, I went hunting for a theater playing this film and watched it.

Movie begins with Jordan’s concert, and as the song begins, we are taken to the flashback –

Janardhan Jakhar aka JJ (Ranbir Kapoor) hails from a middle class joint family and studies in The Hindu college. He’s obsessed with music and he dreams of becoming a rockstar someday.

He plays guitar and sings songs in an attempt to entertain people at the bus stop but is dragged away by police. He complains to his friends that life’s not fair – There’s Jim Morrison who gets applauded for showing his middle finger to the crowd and there’s him, who almost gets caught just for playing music in public.

Mr. Khatana (Kumud Mishra), owner of their college canteen,  one day tells him that all great people – be it singers, musicians, writers, painters, poets have one thing in common – pain and tragedy! According to him – “toote hue dil se hi sangeet nikalta hai”, one has to endure great pain and loss in life. Only tragedy has the power of igniting that kind of dedication, passion and intensity towards something which sets them  apart from the rest of the people and makes them famous and successful.

JJ has neither fallen in love, nor got his heart broken, nor been kicked out of his house, has never been to prison either. He’s the biological son of his parents and both of them are still alive. In short, he has never encountered tragedy in life till now. So, according to Mr. Khatana he doesnt stand a chance of becoming famous and successful.

He attends few musical auditions in college but never gets selected. His friends feel he doesn’t have the style and attitude to get listeners hooked to him and that’s a very important trait for any performer. He tries to learn to be little stylish on stage but fails miserably.
One day he sees Heer Kaul (Nargis Fakhri) at a dance competition in college. His friends have an entire biography of hers and surprisingly he’s still ignorant of her. Heer – from Stephen’s college, who’s been winning all dance competitions so far and is now performing for one last time. She’s basically from Kashmir, is engaged to some guy, Jai (Moufid Aziz) who’s settled abroad and is getting married to him and going away. All this information about her is passed across to JJ when she’s dancing on stage. But the only thing that draws his attention is the fact that she’s a serial heart-breaker.  She’s popularly known as “dil todne wali machine”.  Janardhan who’s desparate to get his heart broken, so that he can become famous, sees a ray of hope and decides to try his luck with her. He walks up to her and proposes to her in a very funny style – the famous scene that’s been doing rounds in trailers : “Aye, Hi, I louve you. Girlfriend ban jaa meri. Tu aur main rrrrock karenge, bata raha hoon. Soch ke dekh.”

When she insults him infront of all her friends and sends him away he acts heartbroken and goes to Khatana’s canteen and orders for samosas to drown, rather swallow his sorrow. He tries a couple of times to woo her but she just doesnt give him a damn.
And when he realizes it’s not working, he gives up the hope of getting his heart broken and starts ignoring her. And this makes her curious as to what he’s upto. One fine day, she calls him to ask him what this is all about. He tells her the truth that he’s not really interested in her. He was pursuing her only because of her reputation. He says she’s pretty and “neat and clean” but he doesnt find her all that great. And when he walks away, she calls him from behind and says she’s going to watch a porn film named “Junglee Jawani” in one of the shabby local theaters. So much for her neat and clean and elegant image! He doesnt take her seriously in the beginning, thinks she’s kidding but when he realizes that she’s really going for the movie, he’s amazed at her and he goes along with her.  In fact, he takes her for the movie.  Once the ice is broken, they bond very well.
She tells him that she’s going to get married and go away. She’ll have to behave like a sophisticated lady then, so she has lots of things to do in a very short span of time, ie, before she gets married – like trying desi daaru, going to a cheap pub and dancing etc. Seeing her zeal for life, he promises her that he’ll help her fulfill all these wild dreams of hers. She makes a list of to-do things and he takes her to all these places. In the mean while music takes a back seat in his life.

He lies at home and goes to Kashmir for her wedding. He’s everywhere – helping people put up the lights, decorate the house, take her out for shopping. Almost reminded me of SRK in DDLJ. And when her friends come for the wedding, she introduces him as Jordan to them.
In between all these wedding preparations,  she falls for JJ. However, she gets married to Jai and off she goes to Prague. But before leaving, she invites JJ saying – pehle main jaati hoon, baad mein tu aa jaana. And poor thing he cant even pronounce Prague. He says Parag.

He goes back to Delhi and his family finds out about his Kashmir trip. They create a drama about it. But life goes on. He graduates and joins his family business. But there’s a robbery and he’s accused of it and thrown out of the house. He carries his guitar and sets off. He goes to Nizamuddin and lives there singing songs at the dargah for sometime.

That’s where Ustad Zameel Khan (Shammi Kapoor) first spots him and sees a great talent in him. After two months he lands up at Khatana’s door seeking shelter. With Khatana’s help, he attends few auditions but nothing seems to be working. Finally when Ustaad Zameel Khan puts in a word to Mr. Dhingra (Piyush Mehra),  the owner of a music company saying he feels JJ is very talented and he foresees a very bright and successful future for him, that Dhingra offers JJ a singing contract.

JJ, now Jordan, clicks with Indian public and his first musical album becomes a hit. He then goes on a Europe tour, which also includes a concert in Prague. He meets Heer in Prague, who now seems to have changed completly – the wild and full of life Heer has now turned into ‘living-just-for-the-heck-of-it’ Heer. She’s pale and has lost interest in everything in life and has developed some psychiatric problem as well. But once Jordan comes back into her life, and they start going around doing silly things like before, she gets back to normal.

This time around Jordan falls in love with her and they have a brief affair. Heer is torn between her husband who she’s guilty of cheating and Jordan who she finds totally irresistible. After Jordan’s concert in Prague, they sort of break up, as she finally makes up her mind to go back to her husband against Jordan’s will and they have a very bitter farewell. But Jordan cannot bring himself to leave the city on such a bitter note, so he sneaks into Jai’s house to meet Heer in the middle of the night, triggering the alarms and waking up everybody, unaware of the security system. He’s arrested for trespassing and unable to handle the stress and emotional turbulence Heer collapses. She’s later diagonised with a form of bone marrow cancer and is sent back to her parents in Kashmir.

Jordan’s brought back to India and put in prison. Amidst all this negative publicity, which Dhingra himself encourages, he decides to release Jordan’s next album which becomes an instant hit.
He’s released from prison. Inspite of all the negative publicity and the bad-guy image, he still manages to become very famous and is highly sought after. He continues doing concerts but he’s a changed man now, not the same old JJ who used to live for music and could die for music. He has terrible mood swings, throws tantrums and gets into fights at the drop of a hat, is forever angry and frustrated. He has all that he has ever dreamt of – he’s a rockstar now and is famous and popular but he’s not happy. It’s Sheena (Aditi Rao Hydari), a reporter whose major assignment has been to cover the journey of JJ to Jordan, who finally spells it out for him that he has everything he’s ever wanted in life but he doesnt have Heer with him. And it’s her absence in his life that’s left him hurt, burning with jealousy and feeling incomplete.

During one of his concerts, he meets Mandy (Heer’s sister) who informs him that Heer is suffering from terminal disease and is dying. He leaves all his assignments and rushes to Kashmir. Her parents are furious when they see him after all that happened in Prague but when they realize that Heer’s condition has started improving after his arrival, they kind of accept him. His contracts, assignments, concerts again become secondary in his life. He is fully focussed on Heer once again. That’s when Khatana arrives and tells him there
are serious charges against him for breaking contracts. Khatana and Heer finally convince him to complete his scheduled concerts. Heer even accompanies him for one of them where journalists and reporters accuse him of breaking Heer’s marriage, for stealing away somebody else’s wife and he loses his temper again and ends up creating a scene.

Heer’s condition begins deteriorating again and she goes into coma. He’s accused of almost killing Heer and he turns even more bitter. The movie abruptly ends when he sees Heer walk up to him during one of his concerts where he’s singing Nadaan parinde.

First half was very entertaining and enjoyable but somehow I failed to fathom the complexity  of the second half. I ended up asking myself -‘was that really necessary’, in quite a lot of places. The way this movie was promoted, I guess I had too much of expectations from it. The tagline of the movie that said one person has the capability of making you and of destructing you didnt really fit in. The script didnt have that intensity to live up to the tagline, at least for me.

If you go and put your hand in the fire, knowing that you’ll get burnt, you cannot possibly blame and hate the world because you knowingly burnt yourself. I found all that anger and hatred in the second half kind of funny. The only reason JJ proposes to Heer initially is because he wants to get his heart broken so that he could become famous not because he actually was in love with her. Even later, when they subsequently becomes friends, she starts nurturing feelings for him but he’s not even sad or hurt when she gets married and goes (May be he’s in love with her but doesn’t realize it then. But she’s already married and gone, so what even if he realizes it now?).
And then after a year or more perhaps (because in the meantime, he finishes his studies, joins family business, gets thrown out of the house, spends time in dargah and finally comes back to Khatana, with whose help he becomes a singer) suddenly when he realizes that he’s not going to be the part of that Europe Tour, which includes a concert in Prague he goes hyper and becomes ready to go to any extent, to sign any contract, any bond just to be able to be a part of it. He has a desperate urge to see her, out of nowhere, just like that all of a sudden.  He falls in love and has an affair with her in Prague, both of them fully aware of the fact that she’s already married to somebody else. And then when he realizes that he cannot have her forever, he condemns the whole world, starts neglecting his career, and turns into a rebel. It’s not even the case of her betraying him. All this didnt make much sense to me. May be if you look at it from a guy’s perspective it would make more sense, might have something to do with  male ego. But for me, half of the hatred and anger in the second half looked forced.

Inspite of all this, I thought Ranbir was flawless in his performance. He was perfect as simpleton and silly Janardhan and rebellious Jordan. It was his movie all through, he was totally terrific!
Nargis was an eye candy, looked pretty and  shared a good chemistry with Ranbir but her dialogue delivery could have been better. And if she really wants to make a place in bollywood, then I think she should start working on her Hindi.
All the supporting actors were really great –
Kumud Mishra as Mr. Khatana was superb as JJ’s support system, who stood by his side till the end – during good times and bad times. Though he failed to comprehend JJ’s bheaviour half the time, he was always there when needed.
Aditi Rao Hydari makes her presence felt with her powerpacked performance as Sheena, in the small role that she has got.
Piyush Mehra was awesome in the role of an arrogant and cunning owner of a music company.
Moufid Aziz as Jai hardly had anything much to do but was pleasant to look at and portrayed his role very well. One of those few onscreen husbands who dont get hyper on learning that his wife’s been cheating on him.
Shernaz Patel and Mandy (dont know what her real name is) were great too as Heer’s mother and sister.
And coming to Shammi Kapoor…he lit up the screen with his presence. Wish he had a little longer presence. He had a very short role, though an important one. It’s because of him that the music company takes up JJ and turns him into a rockstar.  The only time my eyes turned moist while watching this movie was when he appeared on the screen for the first time, at dargah. I was filled with mixed emotions – sad that he’s no longer with us and happy at the same time that we at least get to see him on screen even now. May his soul rest in peace.

It’s a very well directed and beautifully shot film. Imtiaz Ali is a a wonderful director. Though I wouldnt call this his best film ( I still like Socha Na Tha and Jab We Met more), it’s still worth a watch. I didnt find the music very appealing though, not my interpretation of music for a movie named Rockstar. Musically speaking, it has great songs, with deep lyrics and fabulous music, but I wish there was at least one or two lively and peppy numbers. May be it’s also because I had not heard the songs before, they were not at all familar to me.  Over all, I would say it’s a well made movie and I did enjoy watching it. It’s for the first time in my life that I went to a theater all alone and watched a movie, and that too in a totally new place. So it was a different experience altogether.

(Since, I had watched the movie in theater, all the screencaps have been taken from youtube.)

Happy Birthday Mukesh!

July 22, 2011

When I had done a post on Mukesh last year for his death anniversary, I had listed some of his most popular songs. And though I had said I would be doing more posts on him, I’ve hardly had time to do any posts at all after that.

On this Birth Anniversary of his, I’m listing 3 not-so-very-popular (at least I had not heard them earlier until recently) songs that I have come to love immensely. I wish I had the time to do a longer post, but unfortunately I dont. So here goes my list –

1. Pukaro mujhe naam lekar pukaro (Bhool Na Jaana, 1965) : I’m addicted to this song ever since I discovered it. A friend of mine who’s a big-time Gulzar fan had posted this on his wall on facebook about a month ago. And hardly a day has passed without me listening to it since then. It’s the simplicity of this song that I like the most – beautiful lyrics by Gulzar, awesome music by Daan Singh (I’ve become very fond of this man these days) and superb and heart-felt rendition by Mukesh. As this movie was never released, I doubt if we will ever find out how this song was picturized. But the audio is just so perfect, I would rather settle down with it than have the song spoiled by some inappropriate caste or silly picturization (as is the case with some of the best songs).  At the moment, I find this song totally heavenly –  It’s so melodious and poetic and romantic that it’s combined effect makes me heady everytime I listen to it. And I just cant get enough of it –

(Pukaro mujhe naam lekar pukaro 
Mujhe tumse apni khabar mil rahi hai) 2

(Kahin baar yoon bhi hua hai safar mein
Achanak se do ajnabee mil gaye ho) 2
Jinhe rooh pehchaanti ho azal se
Bhatakte bhatakte wohi mil gaye ho

Kunware labon ki kasam tod do tum
zara muskura kar baharein sanwaron

Pukaro mujhe naam lekar pukaro
Mujhe tumse apni khabar mil rahi hai

(Khayalon mein tumne bhi dekhi toh hongi
Kabhi mere khwabon ki dhundhlee lakeeren) 2
Tumhari hatheli se milti hai jaakar
mere haath ki yeh adhoori lakeeren

Badi sar chadhi hai yeh zulfen tumhari
Yeh zulfen meri baazuon mein utaaro

Pukaro mujhe naam lekar pukaro
Mujhe tumse apni khabar mil rahi hai

*Azal  means from the beginning of creation.

2. Hiya jarat rahat din rain (Godaan, 1963) : This song has such a rustic feel to it. I  love the prelude- the sitar and the flute. It sets such a happy note to it, even visually – a cow and a calf tied to a tree infront of the house, a hen pecking on something on the ground. A kid with a mother goat, puppies sucking milk, chics following the mother hen – all marking a new life coming into existence, spreading happiness and Raj Kumar savouring the sight around him. When the mukhda begins, in Bhojpuri, it just add to the rustic-ness that’s already set by the prelude .  Raj Kumar looks very convincing as a farmer and seems to be in a total bliss with his life and surroundings. But even admist all these, there’s an impending sadness in Mukesh’s voice, which reaches it’s peak in the last antara where a decaying skeleton is shown depicting death – Aas adhoori, pyaasi umariya…I had always loved the audio of this song. Saw the video today for the first time and must say I’m impressed with it. Hats off to Pandit Ravi Shankar for this wonderful composition, Anjaan for lovely lyrics and Mukesh for completing the traingle with his soulful rendition.

(Hiyaa jarat rahat din rain
O rama, jarat rahat din rain)2

(Ambuwa ki daali pe koyal bole) 2
Tanik na aawat chain 
O rama, jarat rahat din rain

(Baswaree mein madhur sur baaje) 2
Birahee papihara bolan lage
Madhure madhura madhu bain,
O rama, jarat rahat din rain

(Aas adhuri, pyaasi umariya) 2
Chhaye andhera sooni dagariya
(Darat jiya bechain)2
O rama, jarat rahat din rain

Hiyaa jarat rahat din rain
O rama, jarat rahat din rain

3. Kaise manaaun piyava (Char Diwari, 1961) : Haunting is the word that comes to my mind when I think of this song. When I had first heard this song, I thought it was too sad for my liking but there still was something very hauntingly beautiful and intriguing about it. And then I saw it’s video and I was mesmerized. From the lyrics I could make out that it had something to do with newly weds and probably the girl was in love with somebody else before she got married to this guy. In such situations, it’s usually just the song playing in the background, if it’s not sung by the people involved – ie the guy or the girl or the betrayed lover singing out all his wrath on bewafai. But the fact that it’s a third person singing this song and the husband confirming that it’s a kashti-waala who often sings this song as he sails across the river outside their house is what I found very interesting. I haven’t seen the movie, so I’m not sure who exactly the person singing it is, could be Nanda’s ex-lover. But I started liking this song  more after I saw it’s video. If only the sound in the video was little clearer.

The emotions are so beautifully described and rendered – the anxiety (ghabraana), shyness (sharmaana), short conversation in between and the confusion (or rather fear of not being able to accept or love the person). The last antara leaves the song on quite mysterious note.

The folk touch to the lyrics with words like “piyawa”, “ekhu” gives the song a desi feel. Everytime I listen to it I keep wondering what context is “Goon mere ekhu naahin” referring to. Whether it’s because she was in a relationship with somebody else before getting married and thinks she’s not worth all that she’s getting now. Also, the second antara that goes –


Saajan mere aaye, dhadkan badhti jaaye
Naina jhukte jaayein , ghunghat dhalta jaaye
Khudse hi sharmaaye, aaj teri parchhaayin

Though the first two lines have a romantic note to it, is the third line in continuation to that or is it something about her being ashamed of herself? I have to get hold of this movie somehow and watch it soon.

Salil Da’s music is awesome and so are Shailendra’s words. Heart-rending singing by Mukesh and must say a very well picturized song!

Kaise manaaun piyava 
Goon mere ekhu naahin
Kaise manaaun piyava 

Kaise manaaun piyava 
Goon mere ekhu naahin

Aayi milan ki bela 
Ghabraaun mann maahin
Kaise manaaun piyava 
Goon mere ekhu naahin

Kaise manaaun piyava 

(Saajan mere aaye 
Dhadkan badhti jaaye) 2
Naina jhukte jaayein 
Ghunghat dhalta jaaye
Khudse hi sharmaaye 
Aaj teri parchhaayin
Kaise manaaun piyava 
Goon mere ekhu naahin

(Main anjaani paraayi
Dwaar tihaare aayi) 2
Tune mujhe apnaya 
Preet ki reet nibhayi
Haye re mann ki kaliyaan
Phir bhi khil na paayin
Kaise manaaun piyava 
Goon mere ekhu naahin

Kaise manaaun piyava

A heart-felt thanks to all these maestros for creating such classic gems. Wonder what and how our lives would haven been without these vintage songs. Like the dialogue from Anand – “Anand mara nahiAnand marta nahin”, all these people are immortal. They’ll live forever in the hearts of millions of people. We have loved you and we will always love you. Happy Birthday Mukesh!

Road Trip to Chirala & Bapatla

June 22, 2011

Last couple of months, in fact a year almost, I have been extremely busy. Every time my family or friends asked me out, I’ve always had some work or the other. Going out for movies, outings, vacations had  become a a distant dream. And I was in desperate need of a break. So when Henry (my brother) asked me to join them for this trip, I just couldn’t say no for few reasons –

  • He never got tired of asking me everytime he went out – be it some outing or a movie
  • I was tired of saying no
  • I wanted to get out of here for a few days and forget all about work

I didn’t even know who all were coming, until I actually left. I had to take a day off on Friday and when it did get approved, I was on the top of the world (all the more because my one-week vacation got approved just a week ago, so this was like a bonus)!

The plan was to leave on Friday morning (16th Jun) at 05:30 AM. the time I reached home after work on Thursday evening or rather Friday morning, it was almost 1:30 AM.

Since there was no point in sleeping past 2 AM and then getting up at 4:30-5 AM, I decided to do a night-out. So I sat watching lots of old songs…all thanks to 9X, Mastii and B4U Music 🙂

At 5:30 sharp, Henry came to pick us (Di and me) up. We went together and picked up Venkat and Rahul (friends) and off we went. We stopped at Tarnaka at around 6:15 for breakfast.

Half the time we debated on which route to take – Vijayawada Highway or the Nagarjun Sagar Road. Just as we reached LB Nagar (that’s where we need to take the diversion from), we finally decided to take the Nagarjun Sagar Road and off we sped.

Located at a distance of 350 kms from Hyderabad, Chirala is situated on the shore of Bay of Bengal. Chira means Sari in Telugu. Anuradha, a friend/teammate of mine, who hails from that place  had told me that the Chirala is famous for the saris made there. Considering the fact that it’s a major textile hub, it’s not surprising that the town is named after the textile (Saris in particular). It was earlier known as “KSHIRAPURI” (“Here the sea looks as white as milk”) but later was renamed Chirala.

We randomly stopped at few places to stretch our legs and at Nagarjun Sagar to click few pictures. It was so windy there that we almost flew away with the wind.

Me, Henry, Di, Venkat (Left to right)

We even saw a rainbow!

We reached Chirala at around 1pm. Vardhan and his friend Venkat (II) were there to receive us when we reached there. Vardhan is Venkat’s, Rahul’s and Henry’s friend, and now our friend too, who’s basically from Chirala.

There’s only one lodge in the town, Hotel Siva Hari, which is located exactly in front of the Railway station. We checked in there.

We freshened up and had lunch. Chicken Biryani there is – normal veg biryani sold with a separate dish of chicken. So we had biryani loaded with cashewnuts and chicken for lunch. And by the time we finished lunch, it was well past 4pm.

We set out for the beach next – Ramapuram Beach. There were around 10-12 people when we reached there. They left soon after and we were all alone.

It felt like we were on a private beach. It was just 7 of us on the beach at sunset.

Though the water wasn’t all that blue and crystal clear. It looked quite muddy in fact due to the rain and the sand blown in by the wind. But since it was sunset, it looked very beautiful. The color of the sky and it’s reflection were changing with the sinking orange mass of glow every few minutes.

It was so calm and peaceful. The only sound we could hear was of the splashing waves, wind and occasional chirp of a bird. And the view was just amazing.

Apart from playing in the water, the other thing I love the most about a beach is just standing still at the shore and letting the waves play along my feet. I love the sensation of water splashing over my feet and the sand moving underneath along with the water when the wave comes in and on its way back into the sea, the same water depositing sand over my feet, making me sink deeper and deeper in the sand. Though I am standing still I get that feeling of having travelled across the world….Main thehri rahi, zameen chalne laga wala feeling.

On our way back we went to Vardhan’s house, sat in the backyard in the open air, under the clear sky shimmering with stars and moon. We came back to our hotel at around 10. We had dinner and then sat down to collate the pics from all the cameras. We had around 850 pics! We had forgotten to take the (camera’s) cable so took out the memory card to copy the pics from our camera to the laptop. We had two laptops with us. The card got stuck in one laptop first but Rahul turned it upside down and kept hitting on the laptop and the card fell off. We then tried copying the pictures into the other laptop, so put the memory card in it and it got stuck there too. No amount of hitting helped in this case. Couldn’t find a pin anywhere. We found a nailcutter and tried to use the file to dig and get the card out but it was of no use. Next we bent the hook of my earring and tried using it as a safety-pin but that didn’t help it either. All of us tried our hands at it and finally Vardhan and Venkat managed to take it out with the help of the make-shift pin and when the tip of the card came out with the force of the pin, Venkat caught it with the nailcutter and pulled it out. It was a hilarious episode!

We somehow  managed to copy the pics and by the time we finished seeing them all, it was almost 2:00 AM! We wanted to go to another beach at sunrise, so we decided to leave by 5:30 and retired for the day. We got up and left at 5:45 but it turned out to be a cloudy day, so there was no sunrise!

But that didn’t dampen our enthusiasm. We dived into the water and we played and played! We were neck-deep in the water and would jump with every wave that came and hit us…it was such an amazing experience. It felt like we were flying in the water. The name of this beach was Katarepalem.

And then we went for a walk in the the direction of the wind, so that our clothes dry. We climbed on a harboured boat and posed for pics and almost got blown away. We were upto so much nautanki early in the morning that we got tired and finally dropped down on the sand.

We returned to the town for breakfast and found Pramod (a friend who had just arrived from Hyderabad. As he couldn’t get a day off the previous day, he joined us on Saturday morning) waiting for us. We quickly had our breakfast and went to Chirala port.  This was crowded as it was the peak time. The fishermen were returning with their catches and auctioning fishes and crabs and prawns. It was so bloody cheap that I almost decided to quit my job and set up a sea-food stall there. They sold a basket full of prawns for 15oo bucks. If I had to buy that much prawns in Hyderabad, it would cost me over 4000. And crabs were 30 bucks each. My sis was saying they were  selling crabs at 3100 each in Goa when she had gone there last month.

We went boating on a fisherman’s boat, sat on top of the fishing nets and had lots of dead fishes rolling all over our feet. We must have gone 1.5 kms into the sea. The boat would rise and fall along with each wave sparying sea water all over us. The saltwater would get into our eyes and we would just finish wiping it off when the next bout of spray would attack us. There was just vast expanse of water all around us, making us feel so tiny and vulnerable. The only sound we could hear was that of water, wind and the roaring motor. But once we reached a point, where the water was calmer, the fisherman switched the motor off and we were still and everything was so peaceful and serene. There was no other sound except for the occasional roar of neighbouring boats. And then there was a sudden splash. One of the fishermen dived and disappeared for a moment and resurfaced again. I just gazed at him open-mouthed. The way he dived and swam…he would easily give a tough competition to the world-champions.They know so much about the sea, storm and the techniques of swimming and diving.  It’s a means of survival for them,  through which they earn their livelihood. The sudden realization of that fact hit us quite hard. We spoke to them and found out that they are a group of 8 and with the fishes they catch in every trip, they make around 40K.

We all were so relaxed and at inner peace with ourselves that we didn’t realize the time slip away. And before long it was time to return back to the shore. How I wish I could have stayed there for some more time.

There were fishes being slit open, sprinkled with salt and put out to dry. There were so many people selling and buying them. The place was stinking of fish all over.

It was around 12:30 when we left the place. We were invited to Vardhan’s place for lunch but we had a tough task of choosing between lunch and going to Suryalanka beach. We finally tossed a coin and went to Suryalanka.

Suryalanka is the name of a beach in an adjacent town called Bapatla. It’s promoted quite a lot by AP tourism and they’ve even built cottages there. But I somehow didn’t like it. It was too crowded and being commercialized it was dirty as well. We just spent an hour there clicking pictures and left. Nobody (from our group) even dared to touch the water here.

That's the Beach Resort in the background

The entire group - Me, Vardhan, Venkat2, Rahul, Henry, Di, Venkat1, Pramod

Our next stop was Vardhan’s house where we had royal lunch of prawns cooked in coconut gravy and tangy fish curry made in local ishtyle. It was yummy!!! And we all ate so much that we were not even in a position to move once we were done. We all were high on food! 🙂

We went to see Vardhan’s family farm next. They have cashew nut plantation. There were lots of palm trees and cashew nut bushes and wild berries around and lots of cows and buffaloes. The way upto the farm once we left the main road had a freshness about it. We could hear cows moo-ing here and there, could feel buffaloes stare at us, few places smelt of dried cow dung..it had such a desi-village feel to it. There were still little children playing around in the sand, one pulling the other on a coconut/palm leaf. It was a picture of simplicity. Life now, at least in the cities have become so sophisticated that it was kind of fascinating to see the slow pace of life.

We went back to the hotel, washed away all the salt and sand and fatigue and went back to Vardhan’s place for dinner again. Had amazing dinner – chicken, rasam, rice, curd, fishes, prawns….We saw some old pics at his place, the real, physical photos like the good old days and finally left. We sat down to see the photos again once we reached our rooms.

We wanted to leave early next morning, so that we would reach back on time and take some rest. But uncle and aunty (Vardhan’s parent) wouldn’t hear of us leaving without breakfast.

So, we had a delicious breakfast of puri, chicken, aaloo ki sabji and semia. And we finally left at midday.

We gossiped all the way and reached back at 9PM and were dead tired and sleepy by then. The thought of having to go to work the following day was kind of depressing. But I must say I am feeling more refreshed and active active at work this week. So this proves that we all should take a break once in a while.

A big thank you to all of you for making this trip so memorable. You all were so sporting and made everything so adventurous – be it jumping in the water, or taking the local fisherman’s boat and just setting out into the sea or searching for the farm or burning the cashew nut shells where it was dangerous even to strike a matchstick. Special thanks to Henry – love you dear! I came for you and I had an amazing time. It was great knowing the rest of you.

It was a fun trip! And I really think we should get all those people we discussed about married. It would be so much fun to see them together. They make such perfect couples!

Smita already admitted on facebook after seeing the pics that she has realilzed what she missed. And Geeta, if you are listening, though you were not physically present with us, you were virtually there. Everybody was missing you so much! They all were feeling so bad that you couldn’t join in. Hope someday, we get to go to some place together 🙂

Introducing –

My lovely sis

Henry darling - The future politician 😉

Venkat, the model

Vardhan, the king of expressions

Venkat, the silent observer

Rahul, the photographer

Pramod, the Photographer

Re-introducing myself 😉

More pics coming up on facebook tomorrow 🙂

Ten of my favourite Shyama songs

June 11, 2011

Shyama was one of the most beautiful actresses to have graced the screen. She was charming, gorgeous, lively, expressive and there was something very refreshing about her.

It was her birthday on 7th June. Though a little late, here’s wishing her a very Happy Birthday!!!

Her real name was Khurshid Akhtar. Shyama, her screen name, was given to her by Guru Dutt.

I haven’t seen many movies of hers, apart from Bhabhi. Chhoti Behen and Sharda (And she has a bit of grey shade to her character in all these movies). But I love most of the songs picturized on her.

Shyama and Geeta Dutt  – This is one deadly combination. Geeta’s voice suited Shyama’s vivacious-ness so well. Not that I am restricting my list only to this jodi but couldn’t help mentioning it.

1. Ae dil mujhe bata de (Bhai Bhai, 1956) : I didn’t want to include this song in this list as it had already featured in my Geeta Dutt special post. But I couldn’t help it, simply couldn’t move ahead without this one. It’ one of my all time favourites! Ae dil mujhe bata de tu kispe aa gaya hai, woh kaun hai jo aakar khwabon pe chha gaya hai…They say you are in love when kuch kuch hota hai… Hmmm, let me rephrase that – they say you are in love when somebody walks into your life, starts being a part of your every dream, when your every thought begins revolving around him/her and changes your life forever without you even realizing it and you dont mind when you do. And it’s also believed that love makes life beautiful. Filmy symptoms of being in love – You don’t feel hungry, you turn into an insomniac, you’ll suddenly start finding friends in stars and the moon, you smile to yourself, you day dream, you sing songs and dance like noone’s watching.  Well, this song has all of these ingredients and a lot more. The joy of feeling that attraction towards somebody…a tug at the heartstrings is so beautifully expressed in this song. Shyama, bright and glowing, her expressive eyes dreamy and dancing along with her – her happiness  so obvious. Geeta sounds equally happy, even in her plight of not knowing who exactly has taken over her heart. They are in such perfect sync with each other.  I thoroughly love listening to this song and watching it. And Ashok Kumar’s amused expressions are to die for!

2. Dekho woh chaand chhup ke (Shart, 1954) : This movie had very nice songs. After debating over Na yeh chaand hoga and this, I finally chose this one. Very very romantic. Shyama and Deepak pledging their love for each other under the moonlight. Though the video is little melo-dramatic, especially the beginning where Deepak is so nervous,  the song is very sweet – Hemant Da’s voice renders the soothing and subtle effect to it. I love the way Lata sings “Hum ho gaye tumhare….” and Shyama’s response to “Aisa naa ho ke humko raste mein chhod jao, Jaa kar kahin kisi ki duniya nayee basao” …her denial, the brief shake of her head, so brief that one would almost miss it and the smile that follows with the last antaraa. …

3. Lehraaye jiya balkhaye jiya (Shaarda,1957) : Well, Shyama was definitely very fond of dancing all around the house. She uses the space (covers the stage) very well while dancing and I find her pretty graceful as a dancer. She in fact flows with the song…in a state of joyful exuberance.  She’s singing with joy when she gets to know that she’s getting married to Raj Kapoor, who she’s always been in love with. I think I am not wrong about the plot. I went into a shock after watching this movie, so dont remember things very clearly. It’s Asha singing for her here to Chitalkar’s composition.  Shyama also won Filmfare Best Supporting Actress Award for her role in this movie.

4. Yeh  lo mai haari piya (Aar Paar, 1954) : Though Shyama is confined to a car here and can’t dance,  her priceless expressions and her eyes do such complete justice to the picturization of this timeless classic and Geeta Dutt’s flawless rendition. Guru Dutt is great playing hard to get…but for how long can he resist the magic?  It was so difficult to choose just one song from this movie…it’s a true musical treasure house.  I almost chose Jaa jaa jaa bewafaa, though sad it’s such a beautiful song. But finally I settled for this one. It’s very entertaining and one of it’s kind. All of them – OP Nayyar, Geeta Dutt and Shyama are at their stunning best!

5.  Do naina tumhare pyaare pyaare (Shrimati ji, 1952) : Here we have dashing Nasir Khan and young Shyama dancing to a peppy and a romantic duet. I recently came across this song and fell in love with it. Geeta Dutt and Hemant Kumar sound so good together in this. And Jimmy’s composition is awesome  – it’s a simple, sweet and a catchy song. Geeta Dutt’s singing suits Shyama’s chulbulapan so perfectly.

6.  Achha ji maaf kardo (Musafir Khana, 1955) : OP Nayyar’s composition again, rendered by Rafi saab and Geeta Dutt for Karan Diwan and Shyama. Shyama is dancing again in the garden, doing her trademark steps. I especially like the way she actually counts on her fingers to  “Dil par jo teer chalaye unka hisaab kardo” at 1:20 and the way she pats his arms to the same line at 2:56. The last antara would have been so much fun to watch if Karan had shown little more attitude. Everytime I see this song, how I keep wishing it had Shammi Kapoor or Dev Anand or Guru Dutt in it. There’s one more track in the movie Dil de daala which I am very fond of.

6. Mujhe mil gaya bahana teri deed ka (Barsaat Ki Raat, 1960) : Simple and a delightful song. Shyama dancing yet again singing her gratitude to the moon for bringing her so much happiness. She looks so radiant, like a chaand-ka-tukda herself. I had seen this movie very long ago, during the good old Doordarshan days. I don’t remember much of the story, apart from Zindagi bhar nahin bhoolenge and a part of Madhubala-Bharat Bhushan love story. I need to watch this movie again, at least for its songs and for Shyama and Madhubala. Phew, there are so many movies to watch and so many to re-watch!

7.  Saiyan pyaara hai apna milan (Do Behne, 1959) : A very beautiful romantic song picturized on Shyama and Rajendra Kumar. I love the sets, it’s such a beautiful room. And Rajendra Kumar and Shyama make a very wonderful couple. The song, it’s picturization is so serene. And it somehow reminds me of Chhupa kar meri aankhon ko and Ek tera saath hum ko do jahan se pyaara hai.

8. Tumse hi meri zindagi (Apna Ghar, 1960) : Pretty Shyama and handsome Premnath pledging their love for each other. Geeta Dutt and Mukesh sing for them. The prelude is pretty fast and peppy but the song slows down once the mukhda begins. I just realized that all the songs so far have been extremely romantic. It wasn’t intentional but I’m a sucker for romantic songs, so can’t help it. Let me try, at least, try to end the post with two not-so-romantic songs 😉

9.  Tabiyat thik thi aur dil bhi bekraar na tha (Mirza Sahibaan, 1957) : Tabiyat thik thi aur dil bhi bekraar na tha, yeh tab ki baat hai jab kisi se pyaar na tha. Such a melodious song, though a little sad. Sardul Kwatra’s composition is awesome and Lata’s rendition flawless, as usual. For a change Shyama is not dancing with joy. This song is a true example of being helplessly in love. If only they had shown a glimpse of Shammi darling…sigh!!!!

10. Tumhe husn deke (Jabse Tumhe Dekha Hai,1964) :  I hadn’t set any rules for choosing the songs for this post, I just went with the flow –  flow of listing down which ever song came to my mind but I was still focussing on solos and duets.  And now, since I couldnt get a glimpse of Shammi Kapoor in the previous song, I had to include this one. Few days ago I had mentioned in dustedoff’s post that anything with Shammi Kapoor would qualify for my every post. So, here it goes! A terrific qawali picturized on Shyama, Kumkum, Shammi Kapoor, Shashi Kapoor, Om Prakash, Bhagwan and many more.  – one of the most flamboyant qawalis I have ever come across. Fabulous song, glamorous starcast, great dance and all wonderful people…aur kya chahiye, hai na? 🙂

Chhupa kar meri aankhon ko and Oh Chaand jahan are two of my favourite songs but they are not a part of this list as I had already included them in my earlier posts.

There’s one more song that I recently heard on radio and have been dying to get my hands on it’s video. Dil unko utha ke de diya from Baap Bete. I am head over heels in love with this song, but as the video is not available, I decided to put it in the extras. The first 2 lines of the song is sung by Madan Mohan himself and then Lata follows. I hope somebody uploads its video soon on youtube. Log kehte hai dhoondne pe toh bhagwaan bhi mil jaate hai aur hum hai ke yahan ek video ke liye taras rahe hai.

And here’s one more not-romantic performance that I couldn’t list above.

Here’s wishing her good health and lots of happiness. To one of the most stunning and vivacious actresses!

Chaar Dil Chaar Raahein (1959)

April 2, 2011

The idea of seeing the Kapoor brothers share the same screen space was what first prompted me to buy this movie. But inspite of it having my Shammi darling, I somehow kept postponing watching it for a long time. The picture on the cd cover always managed to demotivate me from watching it – the trio of Meena Kumari, Raj Kapoor and Nimmi give such a depressing look, that every time I took the cd, I just ended up keeping it aside, till now.

As always, it was a song that finally made me watch the movie. I had heard Stella o stella from Return of  Mr. Superman, and I sort of liked it for the humour in it. One fine day, somebody had posted this song on facebook and one of my friends had commented on it saying that this song was first picturized on Shammi Kapoor and Kumkum in Char Dil Char Rahen in 1959 and then was used again in Return of Mr. Superman in 1960!

The movie opens very beautifully, with Raj Kapoor making quite  an entry into the village and a conversation that leaves one wondering….

Chavli (Meena Kumari) recognizes Govinda (Raj Kapoor), and though he finds her familiar he can’t exactly place her. So he heads home. Govinda is Chaudhary’s son. And he had been sent to the town to study when he was a little boy. Now he has finished his schooling and has come back home.

When he inquires about the girl he had met on his way, he finds out that she’s Chavli –  who is an achhoot and a bal-vidhwa (an untouchable and a child widow).

As soon as he finds out who she is, he goes to meet her. He finds her sitting beside a stream.

Govinda : Pehchana mujhe? (Did you recognize me?)

Chavli : Hmmm

Govinda : Pata hai kitne baras ke baad mile hai? (Do you have an idea after how long we have met today?)

Chavli : Hazaron baras (Thousands of years)

Govinda : Bas? (Just thousands of years?)

Chavli : Isse aaghe ki ginti mohe naa aave (I can’t count beyond that) – I love the way she says this…it’s just so cute!

Next, we are taken to a flashback where two little kids are playing. And the entire village gossiping about an Ahir guy playing with a Chamar girl which is not acceptable in the society.  (The Ahir are a caste of cowherds, milkers, and cattle breeders. Chamar (“tanner”; from the Sanskrit Charmakara) is a prominent occupational caste in India, Pakistan and Nepal. Chamar is a Dalit sub-caste. Traditionally, their social status was low in the Indian caste system because of the association with tanning and thus were considered as untouchables, but in modern days they are one of the progressive castes in India – Courtesy wikipedia). It happens that little Chavli (Baby Naaz) has been expelled from the local school. When Govinda comes to know of this he voluntarily drops off saying that he wont go to a school that doesn’t let his Chavli study. So they spend their day playing and running around the village together.

When Choudhary comes to know about it, he sends his son to the town to study, as a punishment. And now, he has finally returned after so many years. He tells Chavli that he will stay back now, he wont go back to the town.

Chavli : Yahan rehke kya karega? Sheher jaayega toh baabu banega,  coat patloon pehnega, bungla mein rahega, motor gaadi mein pon-pon karta phirega. (But what will you do here? If you go to the town, you’ll become a gentleman – wear coat and pant, live in a bunglow, roam around in a car)

Govinda : I will look after my father’s cattles and will teach in the school here. But I am not going back.

He goes back home and tells his father of his decision to stay back. Choudhary is very happy to hear that and says his mother will be happier than him. He reveals that his wife has gone to Choudhary Malkan Singh to ask his daughter, Lajjo’s hands for Govinda.

Govind :  Baat meri karne gaye hai aur mujhse poocha tak nahih. (She’s gone with a proposal and she didn’t even ask me about it?)

Choudhary : Arey bhala..Ladka-ladki se poochkar koi unka biha kare hai?  Aur phir ladki ka baap koi mamooli aadmi nahin…60-70 bhains hai unke paas. (Does anybody ask the guy and the girl and get them married? And Choudhary Malkan Singh is not an ordinary man…he has 60-70 buffaloes.)

Govind : Uski beti bhi toh koi bhains se kum nahin hai baba! (His daughter is not less than a buffalo herself!)

Chodhary : Beta, shareef ladke aisi baat nahin karte (That’s not how a gentleman talks, son)

Govinda tells his father that he won’t marry Lajjo but will marry Chavli instead. He doesn’t believe in caste and religion. And he cares a damn about what the others would think of his decision.

He takes Chavli and goes to the temple and asks the Pujari (Nana Plasikar) to get them married.

But the Pujari suggests that if he’s rebelling against everybody and getting married to an achhoot, then why do it quietly in the temple without any witness. He should go to Chavli’s house dressed as a proper groom with proper band and baaja, marry her and bring her home. Govinda sees sense in this and goes to all his friends in the village inviting them for his wedding. But all of them refuse to be a part of such a disgraceful alliance except for one. So the two of them set out for Chavli’s place.

This causes agitation among the Ahirs and Chamars in the village. But as both groups are against the marriage, they unite and decide to stop the wedding. Choudhary goes to meet Chavli and offers everything he has to her –

Choudhary : Mere paas 14 bigha zameen, 14-15 bhains, 100-200 nagad hai…maang, kya chahye? (I have land, buffaloes, cash…what do you want. You name it and you’ll have it)

Chavli : Aapka aashirwaad (I only need your blessings)

When Govinda arrives, he sees that Chavli’s hut is on fire. He runs to save her, but all he can find there is an anklet of hers. He sees all the Ahirs and Chamars there and reaches a conclusion that they have burned his Chavli to death.

He announces – Aaj se mera koi baap nahin, ghar nahin, gaon nahin, jaat-biradari nahin, koi dharam nahin…yeh sab is aag mein jal gayi. Aaj se main akela hoon.  And he sets off. He walks for days together mourning and finally reaches a crossroad. He finds an anklet there, which is exactly the same as the one he had found at Chavli’s house. The thought that Chavli might be alive brightens him up but he doesn’t know which way to go from there. He sees a car coming and he asks the driver, Dilawar Khan (Ajit) if he has seen a girl passing by. When Dilawar says no, he decides to sit right there and wait for Chavli.

Dilawar is Nawaab Saab’s (Anwar Hussain) driver. His Munshi (Rashid Khan) tells Nawaab about Pyaari (Nimmi), a new tawaif in town who sings very well. Nawaab sends for Pyaari and she sings for him. He’s very pleased with her and is ready to bestow her with all his wealth but she refuses.

Dilawar hates her because he thinks she’s of the kind who would rob his master of all his wealth. But when he learns that she refused to take any of it, he develops a soft corner for her. And before long Pyari and Dilawar are in love. One fine day Nawaab loses all his power and riches and decides to go to Bombay to start a new life. He offers to take Pyari and her mother with him and promises to look after them lifelong. But Pyari chooses Dilawar over  Nawaab.

Dilawar and Pyari soon have a misunderstanding between them because Dilawar, though is in love with Pyari and wants to marry her, he doesn’t want the extra responsibility of looking after her mother. And Pyari refuses to leave her mother alone. She says, other women have  families, so the daughters can leave them when they get married, but a prostitute doesn’t have a family, all that she has is her daughter. And now that she has found love, she cannot be so selfish and leave her mother all alone. At the same crossroads, they part ways and go in different directions.

Johnny (Shammi Kapoor) makes an entry next (finally).  Rastogis – Mr. and Mrs. Rastogi, their little kid along with their aaya, Stella (Kumkum) are on their way to  Hotel Parbat on a vacation when their car breaks down right at the crossroads. Johnny offers to fix their car and in return they give him a lift till Hotel Parbat.

Johnny is in search of a job. So he goes to meet Mr. Ferreira (David), the Manager. He doesn’t have to work too hard to impress Mr. Ferreira and he soon gets the job of a waiter cum dishwasher at the Hotel.

Johnny being Johnny, is smitten by Stella at first sight and he doesn’t waste much time in getting his feelings across to her. And with all his cute ways of trying to impress her, Stella cant resist his charm for long either. Before long, the two are madly in love with each other.

One day Johnny asks Stella –

Johnny : Tumhara bachcha kaisa hai? (not to be confused…she’s an aaya after all)

Stella : Na toh eat-ta hai, drinkta hai saara din weepta weepta hai. Usko daant aa rahe hai.

Stella gets a letter from her mother one day saying that her father has been diagnosed with tuberculosis and will have to be sent to the sanitarium immediately, which would cost them Rs. 500. Johnny takes up the responsibility of earning that amount required for his would-be father-in-laws treatment.
There’s this sweet sequence where Johnny and Stella talk about their dreams, their future.

Johnny goes and asks Ferreira for extra work. He confides in him that Stella’s father is not well and he needs to earn extra money for his treatment.

In our films no love story can go smooth, unless it’s a Rajshri film, without a third person forming a traingle and plotting cunning ways to create misunderstandings between the two lovebirds. And this one’s no different. Ferreira, who also has an eye for Stella sees this as an opportunity and comes up with a plan to land Johnny in trouble.  He gives Johnny the charge of supplying the guests at the hotel with alcohol, which is legally prohibited in the premises of Hotel Parbat. Johnny blind in love doesn’t see the danger this task imposes, he sees it as an opportunity to make quick money and promises to himself that he’ll quit the job once he earns 500 bucks.

Stella is quite disappointed when she learns what Johnny is upto. She catches him red-handed when he goes to deliver Rastogi’s order of  Whiskey. He somehow manages to convince her that he’ll avoid trouble and he won’t do it for long. Just when he manages to manaofy her and all’s well between them, Ferreira gets Jhonny arrested!

He gets released after three months and unaware that Ferriera was behind all this, he first goes to Ferreira to collect his money. He asks him if he knows where Stella is. That’s when Ferriera introduces Stella as Mrs. Ferriera. Poor Johnny is heart broken. Angry and murderous, he tries to kill Ferriera.

He wanders around for sometime and then starts up a garage at the same crossroads to keep himself occupied. At one point of time, Johnny sings one line of the sad version of my song, Stella o stella o stella, tera johnny ab tak hai akela…

At this point, Nirmal (P Jairaj) makes an appearance. He is a well-educated man and reaches just in time to help all the protagonists of the story. He himself being a socialist, spreads awareness among people on what socialism can do. He makes speeches on exploitation of the poor by rich, lower castes by higher castes in the society etc…these are things that ordinary people can relate to. Thus, he manages to attract lots of people with his socialist theory. He comes up with a proposal of  building a proper road that would connect all the 4 destinations that the crossroads leads to.

There are lots of Contractors fighting for that contract, including Nawaab saab and Ferriera. But it’s Nirmal and his battalion of ordinary people who win it and start building the road.

Will they be successful in achieving their goal and proving the the so-called-rakhwales of the society that given a chance nothing’s impossible for them? With people like Nawwab and Ferriera in the opposition what are the challenges they will face? How is this mission connected to the earlier love stories? Will any of those 3 stories have a happy ending? Are any of these stories interconnected?

Frankly speaking, I don’t know how to rate this movie. It ended so abruptly, in fact the ending itself was missing from the cd. I could kill eagle videos for this! As though deleting the song, and lots of other parts of the movie was not enough, they had to compromise with the ending as well 😦
It was as if I was watching the movie on tv and kept having frequent power cuts. There were so many missing links that I had to use my own imagination to put all the pieces of the story together.

But having said that, I did enjoy watching this movie. To start with, it had been so long since I saw one that it was nice to see such a power packed performance. Everybody was fabulous! K Abbas has done a good job as a director. There were so many social issues addressed in the movie – caste system, religions (the 3 couples in the movie belonged to 3 different religions), power, money, corruption etc.  And the best part was, none of the stories were dragged for too long. Though there was a little bit of  rona-dhona, it was just for sometime and the story quickly moved to the next couple. Except for Nirmal’s speeches, which were a little preachy at times, must say it was quite fast-paced. I guess, I must give a little bit of credit to Eagle videos as well for wiping away so many scenes 😛

I don’t know how many songs were there originally in the movie, the only ones that I got to see were few Lata Numbers that Pyaari sings for Nawaab saab (Koi maane na maane, Intezaar aur abhi , Jab main kehti hoon), one Meena Kapoor (Anil Biswas’s wife)  song picturized on Chavli (Kachchi hai umariya) and the last song, which the entire crew sings as they build the road (Saathi re bhai re). I won’t say I loved the music of this movie, I found it pretty average. Anil Biswas was the Composer and Sahir Ludhyanvi the lyricist. Except for Saathi re bhai re, I dont even remember having heard the rest of the songs. And I was too disappointed that there were no songs picturized on Raj Kapoor and Shammi Kapoor to be able to appreciate the rest 😦

Budtameez (1966)

September 18, 2010

It was Sadhana’s birthday on 2nd September. She’s one of my favourite actresses and I keep raving so much about her. But look at the irony I couldn’t do a post on her birthday.

I was feeling bad about it but I made up for it last Sunday – saw two of her movies back-to-back. Arzoo and Budtameez.

Favourite actor, favourite actress and lots of fabulous songs – I was dying to watch this movie and it had been lying in my must-watch pile for quite sometime. And now I have finally done it! I had first seen this movie more than a decade ago. I had almost forgotten the story but some of the songs, esp the title track always remained afresh in my memory.

Shyam Kumar Saxena (Shammi Kapoor) hails from Allahbaad and lives with his younger sister Beena (Purnima) whom he lovingly call Binny and step-mother (Manorama). We are not taken to a flashback but through a series of conversation it’s revealed that Binny had met with an accident because of Shyam and she’s wheel-chair bound now. Movie begins with Shyam coming home at midnight and Binny keeping awake to wish him for his birthday. Though she’s his step-sister, she loves him dearly and the feeling is mutual.

But Manorama is not very fond of Shyam and keeps nagging him for not getting a job. So he leaves for Bombay the following day in search of a job.

A beggar asks him for some money on the streets of Bombay and when he takes out some money from his pocket a 100 rupees note falls from his pockets and goes flying into a car. He goes running behind and gets into the car in search of it. Just then the car-owner, Shanta (Sadhana) comes along with a bunch of friends and screams at him. She threatens him to get out of his car and drives away.

 Quite lost in the city, he’s just strolling around when he finds a wallet fallen on the ground and hurries behind a man to return it. Raja Bahadur (Brahm Bhardwaj) is highly impressed with Shyam’s honesty and when Shyam breaks a vase worth Rs. 100 in the store, he pays for it. Shyam is hesitant about Raja Bahadur paying for it but he tells him to return the money when he has it and gives his card before leaving.

Shyam comes across Shanta and her friends again at a swimming pool and demands for his money. They play the fool with him and sing Surat haseen lagta hai deewana. At the end of it he somehow manages to get his money back and goes to Raja Bahadur’s house to return the money.

As they converse, it turns out that Raja Bahadur was friends with Shyam’s grandfather in Allahbad. And he invites Shyam to stay with them. Shanta, Raja Bahadur’s granddaughter, is literally shocked to find him in her house. She tries her best to get him out of the house.

Raja Bahadur loves Shanta dearly and oversees her faults. Now this has made her such a spolit brat. He realizes that his affection has made her so headstrong and rude. So he has hired Rita (Laxmi Chhaya) to help him out in bringing Shanta back on track but all their efforts have been going in vain.

They sit down for breakfast the following morning. Shanta throws away the juice that her butler serves her because she doesn’t like it and half of it falls on Shyam. He argues with her saying she’s not the only one at the table and she should at least have some basic table etiquettes. They have a row over this. At the end of it, Shyam gets up, fetches a jug of water, pours it on Shanta  and walks out. Raja Bahadur and Rita look at the entire episode in awe. Shyam, guilty of his actions, goes to his room and starts packing. He wants to leave the house before Raja Bahadur throws him out for insulting his darling granddaughter.

But what follows next is quite the opposite. Raja Bahadur is highly impressed with Shyam and is convinced now that if someone can put some sense into Shanta’s head, it’s Shyam. So he hires Shyam as the Manager of the house! But before handing over the charge, he explains few things to him as to why Shanta is so aloof to everybody and why she hates men so much – Shanta’s father was a drunkard. The sight of her father getting drunk everyday and beating his wife has etched an indelible impression in her memory. One day when it gets too much to bear, her mother commits suicide. And this has turned her into a man-hater. She doesn’t believe in love and she feels all men are the same. According to her every love story/marriage would end either giving lots of pain or in a suicide. She is also the president of a Ladies Club, a club where she preaches how bad men are and all the members of the club are prohibited from falling in love.

Raja Bahadur also blames his son for all this and says he personally despises people who drink.

But now that Shyam has come into their lives, he is assured that Shanta will learn to love her life and people around her. He also reveals to Shyam his wish of getting Shanta married to him. According to him, he could never find a better guy for Shanta.

Now, there’s Devdas (Kamal Mehra) who has always dreamt of marrying Shanta. He happens to be a family friend’s son and is a little crazy. His sense of dressing is wierder than himself- one day he comes dressed as Robinhood to meet Shanta and the other day as a donkey. He’s such a joker. 

One day Shanta comes down to the hall from her room and is surprised to find the house empty except for Shyam. Shyam tells her that Raja Bahadur has gone to Khandala for some Business deal and Rita has gone with him. As she hates the sight of Shyam, she doesn’t like the idea of being home alone with him. So she decides to go to Khandala as well. She asks the driver to get the car ready.

And yes, you all guessed it right. Her chauffeur is none other than Shyam himself, in disguise of an old man. They leave for Khandala. He drives so slowly and keeps preaching so much to irritate her that after a while she takes over the wheel. 

She’s furious when she discovers that Shyam cheated on her and followed her. Like it happens in all Hindi films, their car breaks half way through. She shows attitude and starts walking. And to this attitude he sings Haseen ho tum khuda toh nahin.

Too add to Shanta’s plight, it’s already dusk, getting darker with every passing minute and it starts pouring heavily. Shyam suggests they go and look for some shelter but Shanta says she would spend the night in the car rather than go anywhere with him. So he leaves her in the car, goes behind a tree and hides. From there he starts roaring like a tiger to scare her. In less than a minute, he has Shanta running out of the car calling out for him, scared to death. They finally find the remains of an old abandoned house in the middle of the jungle and they go there to take shelter from the rain. And this is such a beautiful scene. It’s as though only the entrance of the house is intact – there’s only a space wide enough for one to stand there. Shyam, being a perfect gentleman, lets Shanta take refuge there but Shanta’s conscience doesn’t let her leave Shyam getting drenched in the rain all night. So she calls him and they try to adjust in that little available space. Shyam stands with his breath held in so that his tummy goes in and makes some space for Shanta to fit in as well. It’s so hilarious!!! And then Shanta spots a snake hanging nearby and faints in shyam’s arms. Just then, there’s a gunshot and Colonel Jung bahadur (Jagdish Raj) comes marching. He first thinks they must be lovers who have run away from their house and come and almost shoots them. But Shyam manages to convince him that they are already married and were on their way to Khandala but got stuck due to bad weather. Colonel takes pity on them and takes them to his bunglow.

What follows is a laughter riot. Shanta comes back to her sense, she gets murderous when she discovers that she’s put in the same room as Shyam. Now Shyam has to do all he can to make sure that she doesn’t come to know what he has told the colonel – that they are a married couple! He scares Shanta saying Colonel is mad. He has spent 6 months in a mental asylum and shoots anything and everything at the first opportunity he gets. He tells the same story to colonel about Shanta. He goes around the house singing Budtameez kaho ya kaho jaanwar.

When Shanta gets back home the next morning, she realizes that Raja Bahadur had never gone to Khandala. It was all his plan to get Shyam and Shanta together. She goes mad with anger. She goes to Devdas with her friends and tells him she would marry him if he helps her get Shyam out of her way. Devdas is more than eager to please her.  Remember, Raja Bahadur hates people who drink. So they make a plan to get Shyam drunk at a party and strike his name out of Raja Bahadur’s good books for good.

Devdas throws a party and everybody is invited. Shanta and Devdas give Shyam laddu’s filled with bhaang.

(Doesn’t she look like Kareena here? )

He gets drunk and sings  Apni baahon se koi kaam toh lo. The lines he recites before the song is  just awesome : Nashaa pilaa ke giraanaa toh sab ko aataa hai, Arre mazaa toh jab hai ke girton ko thaam le saaqi. Thanks Nasir, I had completely forgotten about this song until I saw saw it on your blog.  And now hardly a day passes without me listening to it.

Raja Bahadur makes his entry at the end of the song and is shocked to see Shyam stuporing. And Shanta adds to it saying he even tried misbehaving with her. But is it so easy to trap Shyam? The truth is that he already knew about Shanta’s plan and he never had the laddu in the first place! He was just acting drunk. When he tells the truth to Raja Bahadur, Shanta hits him on his head with a bottle rendering him uncounscious.

Raja Bahadur takes him home and summons a doctor. Doctor, after dressing his wounds and giving him an injection, tells Raja Bahadur that there’s a chance of Shyam getting blind. When Shyam recovers and gets up Rita enquires if he’s able to see. She then confides in him about the doctor’s fear of him losing his sight. This gives him an idea and he hides the fact that he can see. He acts blind in front of Shanta. And this makes Shanta feel guilty. He sings Dil ko na mere tadpao. But it doesn’t take her long to figure out his act. Slowly she starts falling for him. Being headstrong as she is, she’s reluctant to accept it even to herself.

And when she finally does followed by Pehla pehla pyaar hai yeh pehla pehla pyaar, a Baba comes to give news of Shyam’s death.

She almost has a nervous breakdown and goes running to the place where Shyam had dived into the river and drowned himself. Baba follows her and says Shyam had left a note behind for a girl named Shanta. When she tells him that she’s Shanta, he gives the note to her. She reads it and finds out how much Shyam loved her. She feels miserable that he died because of her. So she decides to end her life as well and jumps into the river. Baba catches her just in time and reveals his real identity. They sing Sirf tum hi toh ho jispe marte hai hum pledging their love for each other. This is where the dialogue in my earlier post comes into picture.

Raja Bahadur is delighted that Shanta has fallen in love with Shyam. He meets up with a Panditji and fixes a date for their wedding.

In the mean time, back in Allahbad, Manorama is looking for a guy for Binny. One Panditji tells Manorama that there is one eligible guy who belongs to a respectable family. But they will get their son married to Binny only if Shyam is ready to marry their widowed daughter! She knows that if she talks to Shyam about it, he wouldn’t even listen to her. So she tells Binny, without revealing the actual truth that she has found a guy for her and he has a lovely sister who would make a great match for Shyam. Happy and excited Binny immediately writes to Shyam about it and asks him to reply back to her letter immediately  if he’s ok with the proposal so that they can commit to them and begin with the preparations.

Raja Bahadur is busy with wedding preparations as well. When Devdas finds out that he’s getting Shanta married to Shyam, he tries to fight with him for Shanta. But Raja Bahadur doesn’t give a damn to him. Just then Devdas notices a letter addressed to Shyam on the table in the hall.

 He, along with his friend read the letter and reply to it. The letter never reaches Shyam! Now thinking Shyam is happy with the proposal, Manorama and Binny also start preparing for the weddings. Before you start wondering how they managed to copy Shyam’s hand-writing…they don’t write the reply back, they send a telegram instead, ruling out the possibility of getting caught! Smart guys 😛

Shyam leaves for Allahbad, with due permission from Raja Bahadur, to return with his family for the wedding. He’s in a shock to discover things at home. He has always held himself responsibile for Binny’s accident. She’s become handicapped because of him. Now there’s a good proposal come in and if he tells about Shanta and his wedding in Bombay, his sister may never get married. Who else would marry a handicapped girl, who can’t even walk??? So he quietly sacrifices his love and gets himself involved in the wedding preparations.

Shyam’s wedding card reaches Raja Bahadur in Bombay and he’s shocked to see it. He can’t believe that he made such a big mistake – He always thought of Shyam as someone who’s very reliable and responsibile. The guy who had left with a promise to marry Shanta is now getting married to somebody else!  Shanta, still unaware of Shyam’s wedding, is happily selecting jewelleries for her own wedding.

Shanta is heart-broken when she learns the truth and she becomes her old self again. Raja Bahadur is all set to cancel the invitaitons but Shanta insists that she will get married as planned but to a different guy,  Devdas. If Shyam can forget her and get married to somebody else, she argues so can she!

Will Binny get to know that Shyam had already  committed himself to Shyam before it’s too late? Will she be able to change their fate even qif she does find it out? Will Shyam ever discover that it was all Devdas’s doing? Watch Budtameez to find out.

It’s a lot like Ziddi (1964). Both are about  taming a stubborn girl but I liked this one much better. Not just because it has Shammi Kapoor in it (though that’s one of the reasons) but because the story is handled and executed better here. Sadhana is gorgeous!!! Shankar Jaikishan’s music is awesome and the songs penned by Shailendra and Hasrat Jaipuri are simply superb. Love each one of them!

The script was written for Shammi Kapoor…everything about the movie is extremely Shammi-sque. I can’t imagine anybody else doing this role. He is stylish, suave, romantic, flirty, smart, caring, funny….as always. Sadhana is amazing –  arrogant, stubborn, witty and very very beautiful. Sadhana’s Shanta was a perfect match for Shammi Kapoor’s Shyam! And they shared a great chemistry!  Apart from the lead pair, I liked all the others as well. Every character had a well-defined role.

I particularly liked Brahm Bhardwarj and Jagdish Raj!

Jagdish Kanwal’s dialogues were crisp and just perfect. I love him for that filmy dialogue alone! After an overdose of Manmohan Desais movies from the 70’s and 80’s with all lost-and-found themes (not that I don’t like them, I have seen most of them, not just once but so many times) I had almost forgotten that he had directed some great movies like this. This film just restored my faith in him.

All in all, a very entertaining film. I see myself watching it quite often – it has made its place in my favourite Shammi Kapoor films (others being : Dil Deke Dekho, Professor, Teesri Manzil, Raj Kumar…..). I thoroughly enjoyed watching the film. A great stress-buster! 🙂

I somehow missed Rajendranath in this movie. Kamal Mehra was great as Devdas but would have loved to see Rajendranath do that role.

You can watch if online if you can’t get a dvd.