Mr. India (1987)

Pallavi-in-lamhe-sridevi-36959517-1280-720

Some artists are such masters at their craft and leave such a lasting impression that they become part of our lives. Through their work  (songs/films) they comfort us when we feel down and out. Sometimes when you feel all alone and nobody is there anymore to be with you in difficult times, these artists, through their work, comfort you and give you hope. They see you through difficult times and you come to see them as  “your own”. They become like friends. And one of such artists passes away it seems like we have lost one of our best friends, one of our own.

Sridevi was such an actress for me. February 24th 2018 was the day “The Devi” passed away just aged 54 years old leaving avoid in our lives but leaving behind a great legacy -her films. Today I will write about one of my 2 most favourite Sridevi films (the other being “Lamhe”) – Mr. India.

mr india

 

 

 

Boney Kapoor (left) was a producer (son of producer Surinder Kapoor) who had produced the film  “Hum Paanch” (1980 – Mithun Chakrevotry, Sanjeev Kumar, Shabana Azmi, Deepti Naval, Raj Babbar, Nasseerudin Shah, Gulshan Grover and Amrish Puri) which was a moderate hit. He followed that up with “Woh 7 Din” (1983- Anil Kapoor, Nasseerudin Shah and Padmini Kolhapure)  which was a surprise hit and gave little brother Anil Kapoor his first hit as a lead. So when the “Mr. India” project came to him after Amitabh Bachchan could not do the movie, he signed little brother Anil Kapoor for the title role and the nr. 1 actress of that time – Sridevi-  for the role of Seema. The film would be directed by Shekhar Kapur.

 

Shekar Kapur (right) was a unsuccessful actor who became a director who made the succesful film “Masoom” (1983 – Nasseerudin Shah, Shabana Azmi, Jugal Hansraj, Urmila Matondkar). Today Shekhar Kapur is a director from India who has also won an Oscar. But in India he just made 2 films. There were a lot of movies Shekhar Kapur was making but he left all of them incomplete when he left for Hollywood. Films like “Joshilaay” (1989- Sridevi, Anil Kapoor, Sunny Deol and Meenakshi Shehshadri), “Barsaat” (1995- Bobby Deol, Twinkle Khanna), the unreleased and incomplete  “Time Machine” (based on “Back To The Future” with Aamir Khan, Raveena Tandon, Nasseerudin Shah, Rekha and Vijay Anand) and “Dushmani” (1995- Sunny Deol, Jackie Schroff, Manisha Koirala). But today he is remembered for one of the most modern day classics from The Hindi Film Industry- “Mr. India”.

amitabh

The idea for  “Mr. India” was actually for an Amitabh Bachchan film. But for some reasons Amitabh was not able to do the role. I must confess, though I am an Amitabh Bachchan bhakt, Anil Kapoor did a damn good job in the movie and I can not see any other actor  (from that generation or this one)  doing the role except for Anil Kapoor. Though I do wonder if Aby would have done the role how it would have been.

 

 

One of the many, many highlights of “Mr. India” are the many kids in the movie. Some of them would go on to (try to) make a career in the Hindi Film Industry (I hate the word “Bollywood”) such as Karan Nath (son of Anil Kapoor, Madhuri Dixit, Shilpa Shirodkar and Ranjeeta Kaur’s manager Rakesh Nath), Ahmed Khan (the kid that dances well in the movie would go on to become a choreographer and director himself), Aftab Shivdesani (who would go on to try to make it as a leading man) and the girl who stole our hearts as Tina- Huzaan Khodaji. I really feel bad that she did not make any more movies!

 

 

The film has a bunch of actors in supporting roles who we already knew or who would go on to make a name for themselves later on in their careers. The villains in the movie were straight out of a comic and each and every member from the supporting cast did well in their roles. My favourite from the supporting cast are Ashok Kumar (for obvious reasons) and Sharat Saxena and Bob Christo for their portrayal.

 

 

“Mr. India” is the last movie which’s script is credited as “written by Salim-Javed” – the best screenplaywriters ever in Hindi Cinema. When they separated the script had not been written yet. The idea of the movie was just what they had. The actual script of the movie was written by Javed Akhtar. Satish Kaushik (who also plays “Calender” in the movie)  was an assistant director on the movie as well. An assistant to Shekhar Kapur. Satish would go on to direct several other movies and would do many comedy roles in movies  (most notably those comedy roles with Govinda).

 

 

Anil Kapoor did a great job as  “Arun bhaiya” and “Mr. India”. Though when the movie was released and declared a super blockbuster he was ridiculed as he was invisible for half of the film and the success was credited to Sridevi. Some people even said the film should have been titles “Miss India” as Sridevi made the film the succes it became. Here i must say that what Anil Kapoor did here takes guts. You know you will be invisible for half the movie and you know Sridevi her role will be talked about and still he gave a sincere performance. Hats off Mr. Kapoor.

“Mogambo Khush Huwa”- who can forget Amrish Puri in the role of Mogambo!  After Gabbar Singh in Sholay I think the best villain ever in Hindi Cinema (and once again credited to Salim-Javed!).

anupam

Legend has it that the role of Mogambo was originally to be done by Anupam Kher (who I think is a bit overrated as an actor). Thank God the role went to Amrish Puri because let’s be honest: Is there anyone who can imagine any other actor then Amrish Puri in this role? Hell NO!!

 

 

The music of “Mr. India” was by Laxmikant-Pyarelal who gave an outstanding soundtrack for this movie. Kishore Kumar sang the songs for Anil Kapoor and Alisha Chinoi and Kavita Krishnamurthy were the voice of Sridevi. Kavit Krishnamurthy would go on to become the screenvoice for Sridevi in many films after this movie including “Chaalbaaz” (1989- Sridevi, Rajnikanth and Sunny Deol). Funny story about how this actually happened. The song  “Hawa Hawaii” was supposed to be sung by Asha Bhonsle. But when the song was to be recorded she was out of town. So the song was recorded in the voice of Kavita Krishnamurthy with the intention of dubbing her lines by Asha Bhonsle when she would return. But Kavita Krishnamurthy sang the song sooo good that the producer and music directors released this version because even Asha Bhonsle would not be able to better her version. And so her song was retained on the soundtrack and it was this song that became the breakthrough for Kavita Krishnamurty!  ps. This song would be recreated and picturised on all of  Vidya Balan  and once again I was livid – another classic f@#^$% up! Nobody can better Sridevi and Kavita Krishnamurthy so why even try? I just don;t get it!

A thing that left me baffled was that the sad version of the Kishore Kumar song  “Zindagi Ki Yehi Reet Hai” was sung By Mohd. Aziz. I just could not understand why when the master himself was still alive…

Better judgment prevailed when I saw the movie because the sad version was also sung by Kishore Kumar  (which was not on the first released cassette but was on the released lp of the movie)  and that version sung by Kishore Kumar was used in the final print of the movie.

After her song in Jaanbaaz  (1986- Sridevi in a special appearance, Feroz Khan, Anil Kapoor, Dimple Kapadia, Rekha and Mukesh Khanna) “Har Kisiko Nahin Milta” “Mr. India” had another song that would become a benchmark in “classy seduction songs” this one sung by Kishore Kumar and Alisha Chinoi.

The are movies you like when you see them but when you see them after a couple of years it’s a different movie because the film doesn’t age well. It does not hold up. “Mr. India” is not one of those. This film still holds up and can be watched by every generation over and over again!

To pay my humble tribute to Sridevi I dedicated my radioshow “YAADEIN- A walk Through Memory Lane” (which is broadcast on SunriseFM every Sunday 10PM Netherlands, 6PM Surinam, and every Mondaymorning 2.30AM IST) of Sunday 4th March to my all time favourite actress.

For those who are interested in the show (which was in Hindi) here is the link to the show. If you listen feel free to leave all your feedback and remarks in the comments section:

 

I aslo made a list of my Top 10 SRIDEVI films on IMDB. Here is the link to that list.

http://www.imdb.com/list/ls023787233/

Don’t forget to join our facebook group “GEET SANGEET”.

 

hawa hawaii

You will be missed Sridevi. Thank you for all the movies and the great memories associated with these movies.

When Jhanvi’s movie “Dhadak” will be released I will watch it first day, first show pure out of love and respect for Sridevi!

 

Advertisements

Sholay (1975)

Sholay01

So when I started writing this blog it took me all of my willpower NOT to start with “Sholay”. But recently I spoke to 2 persons who confessed not to have seen the movie ever. This prompted me to write about the “greatest film ever made”

There are all kind of films where ever films are made. You have cringe-worthy movies, super bad movies, bad movies, average movies, good movies and evergreen movies. And then you have  “Sholay”.  Sholay is -according to me and many others-  the best movie ever made (in India). “Sholay” is the most remade, the most admired and the most referenced movie ever to have been made in the Hindi Film Industry. Books have been written about  “Sholay”, thesis have been written and studies have been done to try to find out what made “Sholay” the movie it is. Whatever the outcome one fact remains: “Sholay” was, is and will remain the best of the best and think about the following: Whenever a top 10 list is made “Sholay” is on the list. Be it a list about action films, love stories, comedy films, the best on-screen pairing, songs that became an anthem… whatever the case “Sholay” will feature on the list.

There are too many facts and stories about “Sholay” to include in a simple blog like this. But I will give you my opinion about “the greatest movie ever made” with some facts and stories thrown in for fun. For all the people who have lived under a rock for the last 43 years and have not heard of or may not have seen  “Sholay” beware that this blog has been written assuming that everyone – from the elderly to unborn babies- have seen “Sholay” at least once in their lifetime.

 

G.P. Sippy was a producer who produced 22 films in a time span of 46 years. He started out with producing films like “Sazaa” (1951- Dev Anand with the evergreen song  “Tum Na Jane Kis Jahaan Mein”), 12 O’Clock (1958- Waheeda Rehman and Guru Dutt) ,Raaz (1967- which introduced Rajesh Khanna and Babita- the morher of Karishma and Kareena Kapoor) and “Brahmachari” ( Shammi Kapoor, Rajshree, Mumtaz, Pran, Jr. Mahmood and Sachin). Though everything would change with the movie that would release after “Brahmachari”.

Sholay- Ramesh Sippy02

Ramesh Sippy – who was the son of G.P. Sippy- was learning the ropes on the films produced by his father. He had been the assistant director on some movies and was the executive producer on “Brahmachari”.  He would finally go on to make his directing debut with a film that would release in 1971 and that would make him a hit director with his first film. It was also with this film that he would work with the writers duo that would become not only an integral part of his success but who would also become an integral part of Hindi Cinema…

Ramesh Sippy would go on to direct some movies which would be all different in genre but would all become a benchmark for those genres: Andaz (1971- Shammi Kapoor, Hema Malini, Simmi Garewal, Ajit and Rajesh Khanna in the first special appearance for a superstar) would be the first collaboration of Ramesh Sippy and the leading lady who would feature in some of his best work -Hema Malini. “Seeta aur Geeta” (1971- Hema Malini, Dharmendra, Sanjeev Kumar) , Shaan (1980- Amitabh Bachchan, Shashi Kapoor, Sunil Dutt, Parveen Babi, Raakhee Gulzar, Shatrughan Sinha, Kulbhushan Karbanda, Bindiya Goswami and Mazhar Khan), “Shakti” (1982 – an underrated masterpiece with Amitabh Bachchan, Dilip Kumar, Smita Patil, Raakhee Gulzar, Amrish Puri and an unknown Anil Kapoor), “Saagar” (1985- Rishi Kapoor, Kamal Hassan and Dimple Kapadia- who would go topless for this movie) followed. After these movies the magic disappeared and movies like “Bhrashtachar” (1989 – Rajnikant, Rekha, Mithun Chakrevotry and Shilpa Shirodkar in her debut movie), “Akayla” (1991 – Amitabh Bachchan, Jackie Scroff, Meenakshi Shehshadri, Aditya Pancholi and Amrita Singh) and finally “Zamaana Deewana” (1995 – Shatrughan Sinha, Jeetendra, Raveena Tandon and Shah Rukh Khan) would follow and would all flop.

Ramesh Sippy would also be the only director to have another casting coup after bringing Amitabh Bachchan and Dilip Kumar together for the first and only time in “Shakti”. He started a movie with Sridevi and Madhuri Dixit as the two leading ladies. This movie  “Zameen” also featured Rajnikant, Vinod Khanna and Sanjay Dutt. The movie started and shooting progressed. But due to lack of funds the movie was shelved and never completed. But Sridevi- my all time favourite actress along with Madhubala-  and Madhuri Dixit did shoot for the movie together and even shot for a song together.

One movie made by Ramesh Sippy though has not been mentioned yet…

The casting of  “Sholay” could be subject to an entire book. When the film was to be started Sanjeev Kumar -who eventually played the Thakur- wanted to play the role of Veeru (since he was in love with Hema Malini and after “Seeta aur Geeta” wanted another opportunity to be her leading man). Dharemendra -who eventually BECAME Veeru wanted to play the role of  the Thakur. Amitabh Bachchan initially wanted to play the role of Gabbar Singh. Ramesh Sippy went to Dharmendra who was “silently” in love with Hema Malini (and it was common knowledge that Sanjeev Kumar was in love with Hema Malini as well) and told him that if he plays the Thakur Ramesh will give the role of Veeru to Sanjeev Kumar and Sanjeev would be able to romance Hema on-screen. Better judgement prevailed and Dharmendra accepted the role of Veeru. Sanjeev had no choice but to accept the role of the Thakur. Hema Malini was always there as Basanti. No second option was even considered. Jaya Bhaduri-Bachchan was cast as the widowed daughter in law of Thakur- Radha. Two more roles were to be cast: Jai and Gabbar Singh.

For the role of Jai Shatrughan Sinha was considered. And Danny Denzongpa was considered for the role of Gabbar Singh. Amitabh Bachchan however who really wanted the role of Jai approached Dharmendra and requested him to recommend him to the director. Dharmendra -who is all heart and emotion- could not say no to Bachchan and not knowing that his friend Shatrughan Sinha was considered for the role recommended him to Ramesh Sippy. But that was not enough to persuade Ramesh Sippy. Two others would have a big hand in the decision.

Danny Denzonpa was considered for the role of Gabbar Singh and was even offered the role. But Danny had just signed to play a role in Feroz Khan’s take on  “The Godfather” which had a big cast as well (though not so big as “Sholay”) and his dates for shooting which were required for ‘Sholay” had already been alloted to Feroz Khan for his  “Dharmatma”. The principled gentleman that Danny is he turned down the role of Gabbar Singh. And once again those 2 gentleman came to the rescue…

Salim-Javed were at the top of their game at that time. It seemed that every script they wrote turned into gold. They started as writers for G.P. Sippy films but didn’t get credit for films like “Haathi Mere Saathi” (1971- Rajesh Khanna and Tanuja). But they went on to turn out hit after hit including Ramesh Sippy’s own  “Seeta aur Geeta”. And when they intervened with suggestions those suggestions were taken seriously as the past proved that they were right, not most of the time, but all the time in those days. Salim-Javed had in the meantime created the role of the angry young man and had made Prakash Mehra cast Amitabh Bachchan in “Zanjeer” 1973. Salim – Javed insisted (though “zanjeer” had not been released yet when “Sholay” started and Amitabh Bachchan had not yet become the God of Hindi Cinema) that Amitabh Bachchan be taken for the role of Jai and so happened. Salim ( who by the way is the father of current superstar Salman Khan) had seen Amjad Khan in a play many years ago and was impressed and had not forgotten him. Amjad Khan’s name was suggested and eventually he ended up doing the role. There are some other stories regarding Amjad Khan and Sholay like how he was disillusioned with Salim Khan later on and never worked in another Salim-Javed script which we will not get into in this blog.

As far as I know “Sholay” might be the only movie of which each and every character is remembered (and quoted in our daily lives) and loved. Who can forget Asrani as the “angrezon ke zamane ke jailor -HA HA” who would reprise this role in two other films (in one of these films he would see Amitabh en Dharmendra -a clip would be used from the song  “Ek Rasta Do Rahi” from the movie “Ram Balram”- and it would be mentioned that those two were the sons of Jai and Veeru).  Jagdeep as  “Soorma Bhopali” who would eventually make an entire movie with this character in the lead, A.K. Hangal as the “chacha” , Sachin, Viju Khote as  “Kaalia” and who will ever be able to forget McMohan as Sambha!?

The dialogues of this film are one of the many highlights. And the writers have seen to it that each and every character have dialogues that stand out. I am not going to quote any dialogues here but the dialogues are used even today in our daily lives. Though I must confess -and this is not because I am the biggest Amitabh fan on the planet-  Amitabh has the best lines because I can identify with his sarcasm filled humor.

Now for the main star cast:

Each and every member of the main cast gave an outstanding performance and it is impossible to visualize any other actor in any of the roles. Sanjeev Kumar as the ex police officer intent on revenge is bang on. Hema Malini as Basanti  “jinko fuzool baat karni ke aadat nahin” is so great it is still etched in our memory and even today when a girl talks too much we call the girl Basanti. Amjad Khan, what can be said about him as Gabbar that has not been said or written before. Amjad Khan is remembered till this date for his superb portrayal and he would go on to reprise this role in the spoof  “Ramgarh ke Sholay” which had imitators of heroes in the lead. The actress who is not usually credited with the sublime work she has done in this movie is Jaya Bhaduri Bachchan. The way she emotes without actually saying anything is a masterclass in acting. You feel her pain and feel for her.

In the following clip which is the death scene of Jai you get to see a masterclass in Hindi Cinema by director Ramesh Sippy, music composer R.D. Burman and actors Sanjeev Kumar and Jaya Bhaduri Bachchan. The scene itself is emotional but the song composed by R.D. Burman takes it to another level. The direction by Ramesh Sippy is nothing less then genius. But the performances by Jaya and Sanjeev are superb. Jaya emotes without saying a word (like for most of the movie)  and Sanjeev wants to comfort his widowed daughter in love who was going to be married to the deceased Amitabh Bachchan but he can’t even comfort her as his arms have been chopped off. Masterful!

I have mentioned all the supporting actors in the movie as well as the main leads except for one:

What can one say about the greatest actor to have ever graced the Indian Screen? For the younger generation who only knows The Great Bachchan from his father roles in those Akshay Kumar, Salman Khan, Shah Rukh Khan movies… watch this and anyone will understand why we love, admire and respect Amitabh Bachchan the way we do. And some people like me just worship him. There has never been anyone like him before him and, hell, there will never be anyone remotely like him again. No matter how hard people try. Some actors may try to remake his films like “Don”, “Zanjeer” or “Agneepath” and these movies maybe technically more advanced then the Bachchan versions but these remakes lack in one thing when compared to the original: AMITABH BACHCHAN.

Everyone I spoke to and all articles I have read question one aspect of the movie: did Jai have to die? I wish Jai did not die in the movie. Since I know he will die, whenever I watch the movie and the train comes in at the beginning and the title music starts to play, I start getting emotional knowing Jai will sacrifice himself at the end. I realise that the death of Jai gives the film an extra emotional graph that is needed near the ending of the movie, but, to be honest, I wouldn’t have minded it that much if Veeru would have sacrificed himself. There is no other actor who could have pulled of this role with that sarcastic humor except for Amitabh Bachchan.

The tracks of  “Sholay” and the sublime theme music have been composed by R.D. Burman who was the house composer for Ramesh Sippy. Noteworthy is that for Ramesh Sippy films “Seeta aur Geeta”, “Sholay”, “Shakti” and “Saagar” a great theme music was composed by R.D. Burman. The songs sung by Kishore Kumar, Manna Dey, Lata Mangeshkar and R.D. Burman himself were all hits but not that big a hit as the dialogues. The Anand Bakshi written songs are remembered even today. Even today when we think of a song on friendship the songs that comes to mind at once is  “Yeh Dosti Hum Nahin Todenge”. There is one song which was not used in the film which was sung by Kishore Kumar, Manna Dey, Bhupindra Singh and lyricist Anand Bakshi.

“Sholay” was the first film for which records were released  (and sold out!) containing the dialogues of the movie.

There are 3 versions of “Sholay doing the rounds :

01. The theatrical version as the film was first released in cinema’s.

02. The version with the alternate ending. This was initially supposed to be the ending and was filmed first by Ramesh Sippy.  The censor board (even in those days!) rejected the ending and wanted it re-shot.

03. The extended edition with some extra scenes including scenes of Sachin’s character and Gabbar Singh, a few seconds extra of Jaya Bhaduri Bachchan and a shot of Amitabh Bachchan before he is cremated and an extended scene (just a few seconds) of Amitabh and Jaya.

This is not the only Amitabh Bachchan film which has two different endings. There is another ’70s film which has two different endings doing the rounds. In one ending Amitabh dies in that movie and in the other ending he survives. And that movie stars Sanjeev Kumar as well. But that is for another post!

Do you like behind the scene stories about movies, movies till those from the 90’s or those film songs when hindi film songs were actually any good? Then tune in to SunriseFM every Sunday 10PM (Netherlands), 5PM (Suriname), 4PM (New York), 9PM (London) and Monday 2.30AM (IST) for my radioshow  “YAADEIN- A Walk Through Memory Lane. You can tune in to the show on SunriseFM through the cable (if you live in The Netherlands). Otherwise you can listen to the show through Tunein, The Sunrisefm app or online : http://www.sunrisefm.nl

And don’t forget to become a member of our Facebook community “GEET SANGEET”

 

Sholay (1975)

produced by G.P. Sippy

directed by Ramesh Sippy

music by Rahul Dev Burman

lyrics by Anand Bakshi

singers Kishore Kumar, Lata Mangeshkar, Manna Dey, R.D. Burman, Bhupinder and Anand Bakshi

cast Amitabh Bachchan, Dharmendra, Hema Malini, Sanjeev Kumar, Jaya Bhaduri Bachchan, Amjad Khan, Asrani, Jagdeep, Keshto Mukherjee, Viju Khote, Sachin, A.K. Hangal, McMohan, Om ShivPuri and others

Sholay -Jai & Veeru

Dil Hai Ke Manta Nahin (1991)

DHKMN02

In the year 1991 director Mahesh Bhatt achieved something that is rarely achieved. Something that is even more rare in The Hindi Film Industry. But let’s start at the beginning…

Gulshan Kumar, the founder of T-Series and the man who saw to it that melody came back in hindi films in the ’90s, started his career as a producer with the tv movie Mirza Ghalib in 1988. He went on to produce the movies “Abhi Toh Main Jawaan Hoon” (1989 directed by the late Amjad Khan featuring Sachin) and “Bahaar Aane Tak” (1990 – Sumeet Saigal and Rupa Ganguly). The latter had a soundtrack by Rajesh Roshan that would be a big hit especially the song  “Kaali Teri Chotti Hai”.

Then came the year 1990 and this would be the year that changed everything. This would be the year that Gulshan Kumar would collaborate with Mahesh Bhatt for the first time and that for a movie which would have music by Nadeem Shravan. A Nadeem Shravan soundtrack for a T-Series produced film for the first time. The story about the making and behind the scenes stories of “Aashiqui” are food for another blog so I will not go into that here. Just one thing I would like to mention since that will bring us back to our movie… Nadeem-Shravan recorded some songs for this movie and gave it to Gulshan Kumar and Mahesh Bhatt. They selected the songs for “Aashiqui” and rejected some songs…

Mahesh Bhatt was a director who had not been too succesful in the initial phase of his career. Movies like “Manzilein Aur Bhi Hai” (1974 – Kabir Bedi), “Vishwaasghaat” (1977 – Sanjeev Kumar, Shabana Azmi) and “Naya Daur” ( 1978- Rishi Kapoor) were nothing really special. Then in 1982 came the semi-autobiographical  “Arth” (Smita Patil, Raj Kiran, Shabana Azmi and Kulbhushan Karbanda) which changed it all. The film was a hit and a new hit director was born. Films like  “Saaransh” (1984 – Anupam Kher), “Naam” (1986 – Sanju, Kumar Gaurav, Amrita Singh, Poonam Dhillon and Nutan) followed. Some of these films would work big time and some would not work. My favourite Mahesh Bhatt movie from this era was the film “Thikaana” (1987 – Anil Kapoor, Smita Patil, Amrita Singh and Suresh Oberoi). According to me this film had glimpses of a Hitchcockian thriller. I think this movie is one of Mahesh Bhatt’s most underrated films which is a shame.

Then in 1990 Mahesh Bhatt, the director, would make a turn and start making films of a totally other genre. His collaboration with Gulshan Kumar would produce the first film of the new Mahesh Bhatt and the film “Aashiqui” (1990 – Rahul Roy, Anu Agarwal and Deepak Tijori)  would become the biggest hit of the year. Not only would this film give the Hindi Cinema some new actors but this film would single-handedly change the filmi music scene. This film gifted us all music directors Nadeem-Shravan, lyricist Sameer and singers Kumar Sanu and Anuradha Paudwal.

After the big success of “Aashiqui” producer Gulshan Kumar and director Mahesh Bhatt would team up again. This time they would work with a bigger cast. No newcomers but an established hero and heroine. Remember what I told you about the rejected songs for “Aashiqui”? Well one of the songs that was recorded and was rejected for that film was a song which would become an anthem for young lovers. That song was  “Dil Hai Ke Maanta Nahin” (Anuradha Paudwal, Kumar Sanu).

DHKMN01

The film “Dil Hai Ke Manta Nahin” which was released in 1991 was a remake of the Frank Capra film  “It Happened One Night” (1934- Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert). This Hollywood film itself would be remembered for eternity as the first film ever to win the big 4 Oscars. The first film to win Oscars for best film, best director, best actor and best actress. But like I said in the beginning of this article what Mahesh Bhatt achieved with this film is something that is very rarely achieved. And that is to remake a movie in such a way that the remake is actually better than the original. And that is exactly what Mahesh Bhatt did with this movie. Though some scenes are literally lifted from the black and white classic and some dialogues are also literally translated from english to hindi it somehow works… and works big time!

“Dil Hai Ke Manta Nahin” featured Aamir Khan, Pooja Bhatt, Anupam Kher, Tiku Talsania, Avtar Gill, Rakesh Bedi, Mushtaq Khan and many others who would become regulars in Mahesh Bhatt films during the 90’s. The cast of “Aashiqui” was not repeated except for a special appearance right at the beginning by Deepak Tijori during the song  “Galyat Sankali Sonyanchi”. But the cast that did appear in the movie was top-notch. Aamir Khan as Raghu Jetley (the Clark Gable role) was bang on. You can’t visualise anyone else in this role. That’s why it is so damn difficult to think of anybody in this role for a remake (which I will get to later on). Anupam Kher was quite funny in his role as Pooja her dad. It is said that the character portrayed by Anupam Kher was based on the real life father of  “actor” Chunky Panday. I say “actor” because according to me Chunky Panday can’t act to save his life. The character actors like Tiku Talsania (who was known for his washing powder Nirma commercial), Mushtaq Khan and the others all did well and were all good in their respective roles.

That brings me to the leading lady of the film -Pooja Bhatt. I fell in love with Pooja Bhatt when I saw her 1989 tv movie “Daddy” in which she debuted. This movie was not your usual debut love story for a hero or heroine. Pooja had a though role and she did fully justice to it. I would come to love Pooja for her  “Pooja roles”. To be honest most of her early films had her in the same role- at least the same character of Pooja. But let’s be honest: this were the 90’s and a lot of actors and actresses were faced with type casting. At least Pooja excelled in her role. I would come to love all her roles even if the film might be bad. And she surprised me with her comic timing. Especially in the Subhash Ghai produced, Sachin directed  “Prem Deewaane” (1992 – Jackie Schroff, Madhuri Dizit and Vivek Mushran). Though Madhuri Dixit was the no. 1 actress at the time of this film’s release Pooja Bhatt stole the entire movie.

Pooja accepted this role after turning down  “Aashiqui” for reasons best known to her. I personally think this is a shame because according to me  “Aashiqui” would have gotten that something extra if Pooja would have accepted the role after her fantastic turn in  “Daddy”.

Pooja Bhatt in “Dil Hai Ke Manta Nahin” is just perfect and her pairing with Aamir Khan worked wonders. Though I loved Pooja in this movie there is 1 actress whom I can easily see in her role if this movie would be remade today. And that would be my favourite actress of the new generation…

“Dil Hai Ke Manta Nahin” though a well-directed film with only good performances by the entire cast would not have become the classic it has become if the soundtrack of the film would not have been as perfect as it was…

The making of the soundtrack of “Dil Hai Ke Manta Nahin” could actually be an entire blog of its own. Let’s try to incorporate a few facts and stories regarding the evergreen soundtrack of this movie. Like I mentioned earlier the title track of this movie was written by Sameer , composed by Nadeem-Shravan and sung by Kumar Sanu and recorded for the film  “Aashiqui”. But the track did not make it to final soundtrack of that movie. But when this film was being made it became the title track of this movie. Thank god for small mercies.

All songs which needed a female singer were sung by Anuradha Paudwal since T-Series was heavily promoting her at that time and did not record any songs in other female singers’ voices. Anuradha did a great job and even won a Filmfare Award for the solo version of the title track. In addition to the songs featured in the movie 3 songs were not shown in the movie. “Kaise Mizaaz Aap ke Hain”, “Hum Toh Mashhoor Huwe Hain” and  “O Mere Sapnon Ke Saudagar”. The latter song was included in the movie after the movies release. However the 2 earlier mentioned songs were not which is a shame because they are true gems.

There are a couple of versions of the soundtrack available though it is not easy to find all the versions of the songs today. I bought the cassettes of the movie when it was released and have all versions of the songs. For instance before the movie was released I bought the soundtrack of the movie which had  “Tu Pyaar Hai Kisi Aur Ka” sung by Anuradha Paudwal and Babla Mehta. But when I finally saw the movie the male voice was that of Kumar Sanu. So it took me a while to find that version. Now after 30 years of making my radio show and collecting songs I have some versions of songs which were only in trailers or in the movie. Of the songs “Kaise Mizaaz Aap Ke Hain”, “Adaiyen Bhi Hai” and  “Galiyat Sankali Sonyanchi” I have the versions sung by Anuradha Paudwal and Babla Mehta but also the released versions of Anuradha Paudwal and Kumar Sanu. On some platforms like YouTube a 1 minute version is uploaded of the song  “Dil Tujhpe Aagaya” sung by Kumar Sanu with the caption that it is a very rare version which was recorded. This is not true. I have an album which has singers like Kumar Sanu, Alka Yagnik et all singing an approximately 60 minute medley of Nadeem_Shravan songs. On that album Kumar Sanu renders an 1 minute version of the song which is uploaded on the net.

Now I am not that a big fan of remaking classics. But I am wondering that if Mahesh Bhatt achieved the feat of remaking a Hollywood classic in such a way that it was much much better then the original Frank Capra movie what could happen if  “Dil Hai Ke Manta Nahin” would be remade for today’s generation?

Like I said earlier on I can not think of anyone else in Aamir Khan’s role. It would be damn difficult to visualise anyone else in that role. Maybe the best option would be a newcomer. But in the role of Pooja Bhatt I do have a suggestion. And that is my favourite actress of the new generation. An actress who is pleasing to the eye, just like Pooja Bhatt, but also an actress who can really act, just like Pooja Bhatt. And above all an actress I wouldn’t mind taking on the  “Pooja role” that Pooja Bhatt perfected in the 90’s. Who else then Alia Bhatt whom I do see glimpses of Pooja sometimes.

Wouldn’t that be great? “Dil Hai Ke Manta Nahin 2” with Alia Bhatt!

 

Do you like behind the scene stories about movies, movies till those from the 90’s or those film songs when hindi film songs were actually any good? Then tune in to SunriseFM every Sunday 10PM (Netherlands), 5PM (Suriname), 4PM (New York), 9PM (London) and Monday 2.30AM (IST) for my radioshow  “YAADEIN- A Walk Through Memory Lane). You can tune in to the show on SunriseFM through the cable (if you live in The Netherlands). Otherwise you can listen to the show through Tunein, The Sunrisefm app or online : http://www.sunrisefm.nl

And don;t forget to become a member of our Facebookcommunity “GEET SANGEET”

Dil Hai Ke Manta Nahin  (1991)\

produced by Gulshan Kumar (T-Series)

directed by Mahesh Bhatt

music by Nadeem-Shravan

lyrics by  Sameer and Faaiz Anwar

singers  Anuradha Paudwal, Kumar Sanu, Babla Mehta, Abhijeet, Debashish DasGupta

cast Aamir Khan, Pooja Bhatt and Anupam Kher

 

 

Saajan (1991)

Saajan was a love story released in 1991 that went on to become the biggest hit of that year. The music sales of the soundtrack of this movie broke all records and after “Aashiqui” Nadeem-Shravan established themselves as THE music directors if the new era with this movie.

In anticipation of the 90s special “YAADEIN -90S EDITION” that will be broadcast on SunriseFM on February 4th 2018 let’s go down memory lane to 1991…

 

Sudhakar Bokade was a producer who made his debut as a producer in 1990 with the movies  “Nyay Anyay” ( Jeetendra, Jaya Pradha, Shilpa Shirodkar and Sumeet Saigal) and “Izzatdaar” (Govinda, Madhuri Dixit, Dilip Kumar and Swapna). Though “Nyay Anyay” had a nice soundtrack the film did not do too well. Izzatdaar which was nothing special did fairly okay business. In 1991 Sudhakar Bokade hit the jackpot with the movie  “Saajan” which went on to become the biggest hit of the year and went on to inspire quite a few love triangles again and also about a dozen movies which had the word  “Saajan” in the title. The subsequent movies Sudhakar Bokade produced almost all flopped at the box office. Some where good movies like  “Prahaar” (1991 – nana Patekar, Madhuri Dixit and Dimple Kapadia)  which was directed by Nana Patekar himself. Other movies were crap like  “Sapne Saajan Ke” (1992 – Jackie Scroff, Dimple Kapadia, Karishma Kapoor and Rahul Roy). The final nail in his professional coffin was the film “Kalinga” ( Dilip Kumar, Sunny Deol, Meenakshi Shehshadri, Raj Kiran, Shilpa Shirodkar and others) which got shelved after being in the making for over 7 years and got stuck at 70%. This film was to be directed and scripted by Dilip Kumar who did start the film but never finished it. A story that happened before with the film “Master” which was to be produced and directed by Chandra Barot  (the director of the Bachchan classic  “Don”).

Lawrence D’Souza was a cinematographer and had shot movies like Tajurba (1981 – Smita Patil, Nasseerudin Shah, Raj Babbar), Hatya (1988 – Govinda, Neelam) and Gair Kanooni (1989 – Govinda, Sridevi, Rajnikant, Kimmi Katkar and Shashi Kapoor). He made his directing debut in 1990 with the film  “Nyay Anyay” and would go on to make 16 films in a span of 13 years. Most of his films would eventually flop though some of his movies weren’t that bad. My personal movie directed by Lawrence is the 1993 love story Sangram which had Ajay Devgan, Karishma Kapoor, Danny Denzonpa and Amrish Puri in the leading roles. This would also be the film that would finally bring director D’Souza and 90s actress Ayesha Jhulka together. But more on that later…

Lawrence claim to fame and his biggest hit in his entire career would be this 1991 love story from whom nobody expected anything. This film titled  “Saajan”.

Due to some circumstances which we will talk about later “Saajan” would star Salman Khan and Sanjay Dutt in their first movie as co-stars. Madhuri Dixit would become the heroine of the movie. The supporting cast would compromise of Ektaa (who would go on to marry Nutan’s son Mohnish Behl), Kadar Khan and Reema Lagoo.

Sanjay Dutt at that time was known for his action roles and it would be with this film that Sanju would be stepping in the “love story” territory. For Salman Khan “Saajan” would continue his initial golden run at the box office after “Maine Pyaar Kiya” (1989 – Bhagyashree, Mohnish Behl, Alok Nath), Baaghi (1990 – Naghma, Mohnish Behl) and  “Sanam Bewaffa” (1991 – Chandni, Danny Denzonpa and Pran). This movie would consolidate Bhai as the next superstar of the Indian Cinema. Madhuri Dixit was at a high already at the time of the release of the movie.

The Reema Rakeshnath written movie (daughter of yesteryear character actor Sapru and wife of Rikku Rakeshnath -the secretary of Anil Kapoor, Madhuri Dixit, Shilpa Shirodkar and Ranjeeta Kaur) was loosely based on the yesteryear classic “Aarzoo” (1965- Sadhana, Rajendra Kumar, Feroz Khan, Mahmood and Naaz).

The ’90s were still the times when it took 2 years at the least to complete a film and get it released. In such an environment  “Saajan” was shot in a mere 36 Days!

The star cast of the movie which we eventually saw was not the original intended cast of the movie.

The role eventually played by Sanju in the movie was first offered to Aamir Khan. In true Aamir fashion he turned the role down. And to be quite honest I agree with Aamir’s reasoning. It is said that Aamir turned the role down because he did not understand the reasoning of Madhuri Dixit’s character. So okay, she is in love with the poet she has never seen. then she meets Salman Khan en thinking that he is that poet she falls in love with him. But when she finds out that Salman in an imposter and Sanju -whom she met on several occasions and whom she considers to be her friend is the real poet, she without batting an eyelid dumps our Bhai and is in love with Sanju for whom she had no romantic feelings before that whatsoever. So I do get Aamir’s point of view.

The role done in the film by Ektaa (Behl) was initially offered to Neeta Puri ( Khuli Khidki, Awwal Number, Lashkar and Satyamev jayete)  who was one of the so called  “hottest” actresses of those times. For reasons unknown she turned down the role and the role went to Ektaa.

Okay that was a small role which only had a limited screen time. But the role that was done by Madhuri Dixit was bot offered to her at the beginning. The producer and the director of the movie wanted to cast one of the most beautiful and talented leading ladies of the ’90s _ Ayesha Jhulka- in the leading role opposite Bhai and Sanju. Ayesha was even signed and had started shooting.But on the first day of shooting she had a very high fever and the producer decided he could not wait for Ayesha, signed Madhuri and continued shooting. Now everyone knows what Madhuri Dixit ended up doing with the role and she did do a fantastc job. But I -being a die hard Ayesha Jhulka fan- keep wondering how the movie would have been if Ayesha had done the role of the leading lady in this movie.

Saajan- mera dil bhi

Another aspect that helped make the movie the blockbuster it became were the rumours about the Sanju – Madhuri Dixit affair at that time. It was said that the two fell in love during the making of this movie and that eventually Madhuri Dixit dumped Sanju when his court troubles started. In an interview published in 2017, Madhuri Dixit her former secretary Rikku Rakeshnath said that the entire affair was just a publicity stunt to make the people want to watch them together on-screen as they had signed a couple of films together.

When we think about “Saajan” today more than the movie, more then Bhai, sanju or even Madhuri Dixit what comes to mind is the soundtrack of the movie. initially the producer and director wanted to sign Laxmikant-Pyarelal for the movie. According to an interview with director Lawrence D’Souza since neither the producer nor he, the director,  were known or succesful at the time Laxmikamt-Pyarelal even refused to meet them. In a fix since shooting of the movie had to commence they approached Nadeem-Shravan and the rest is -as they say- history.  History was created by Nadeem-Shravan with a great contribution of the lyricist Sameer (son of the legendary lyricist Anjaan).

This was still the time when after  “Maine Pyaar Kiya” and most of the subsequent movies featuring Bhai, S.P. Balasubrahmanium was his screenvoice. Kumar Sanu was the voice of Sanju inthis movie and would go on to win his second Filmfare Award for Best Playback Singer male for his part in the song “Mera Dil Bhi Kitna Paagal Hai” which would become a solution for many youngsters in those days to try to express their feelings. And since the music of  “Saajan” was released by Venus and not by Gulshan Kumar’s T-Series there was no pressure to let all female songs be sung by only Anuradha Paudwal. Thank God for small blessings because this enabled Nadeem-Shravan to rope in Alka Yagnik as well as the voice of Madhuri Dixit besides having two songs sung bt Anuraha Paudwal.

And what can be considered as a masterstroke Nadeem Shravan roped in famous ghazal singer Pankaj Udhas -who by that time had started singing for a select few films as well- to render the second edition of the song that would be remembered for ages…

If you grew up in the ’90s you must have some memories attached to at least one of the songs of this film. Or maybe to the movie itself.

If you love those ’90s movies and/or songs from those ’90s movies do not forget to tune in on SunriseFM Sunday February 4th 2018 for a “YAADEIN-’90s EDITION”

The show will be broadcast at 10PM (Netherlands), 5PM  (Surinam), 4PM (New York), 9PM (London) and Monday 2.30AM (IST).  The show can be followed through Tunein, The SunriseFM app and also online : http://www.sunrisefm.nl

And ofcourse you can participate in the show LIVE by becoming a member of the facebookgroup GEET SANGEET

Saajan  (1991)

produced by Sudhakar Bokade

directed by Lawrence D’Souza

lyrics by Sameer

singers Alka yagnik, Kumar Sanu, S.P. Balasubrahmanium, Pankaj Udhas and Anuradha Paudwal

cast Salman Khan, Sanjay Dutt, Madhuri Dixit, Kadar Khan, Reema Lagoo and Ektaa

Jhuk Gaya Aasmaan (1968)

JGA -lekh

Lekh Tandon was a director who made some movies that went on to become super succesful. Films like Professor (1962 -Shammi Kapoor), Prince (1969 – Shammi Kapoor), Ek Baar Kaho (1980 – Navin Nsichol, Shabana Azmi and in one of his very first roles -Anila Kapoor) and Agar Tum Na Hote (1983 – Rajesh Khanna, Rekha, Raj Babbar) were some of the movies he made which really worked big time. Lekh Tandon also was an actor who did character roles in movies such as Swades (2004) and Rang De Basanti (2006).

But his swan song as a director came in 1968 when he achieved something that is rarely achieved in the Hindi Film Industry…

JGA03

Its was in this year that his swan song was released “Jhuk Gaya Aasmaan”. Saira Banu was a beautiful actress who had some hits credited to her at that time already. And the hero of the film -Rajendra Kumar- well his nickname at that time was “Jubilee Kumar” because all of his films went on to become golden and platinum jubilees at the cinemas. A feat which is unthinkable in today’s times when a movie stays in the cinemas for 2 or 3 weeks max.

In 1941 a Hollywood movie was released titled “Here Comes Mr. Jordan” which had Claude Rains in the lead. The movie although a good one was a moderate succes. but succesful enough to warrant a sequel. In 1978 (a good 10 years after “Jhuk Gaya Aasmaan”!!) this Hollywood movie was remade by Warren Beatty as “Heaven Can Wait” with himself and Julie Christie in the leading roles. And finally in 2011 Chris Rock remade the movie once again with himself in the leading role as “”Down To Earth”. This last film surprisingly had a lot in common with “Jhuk Gaya Aasmaan”… Does Chris Rock watch Hindi movies…?

So “Jhuk Gaya Aasmaan” which released in 1968 was a remake of “Here Comes Mr. Jordan” and with this remake Lekh Tandon achieved something that is rarely achieved by anyone. And that is to make a remake which is actually much and much better then the original! Yes you read it right!! “Jhuk Gaya Aasmaan” is the best version of all the films mentioned above.

The cast of the film couldn.t have been better selected. In those days there were no so called “casting directors”, the producer and director did the casting themselves.

Rajendra Kumar as the hero does a fantastic job. You really feel for him, laugh with him and cry with him. Prem Chopra as the evil step brother in the second half of the film does his usual “Prem Chopra” role but he is effective. Rajendra Nath – best known for his “Poppatlal” roles in the Nasir Hussain films is really funny for once. But that is not just because of his antics, it is also because of his role. he is one person whom we can identify with. First as the friend of Rajendra Kumar who cremates his friends body after his death and then when he is called by his friends lookalike in another city who tells him that he IS his friend since his soul is in another body. It is also funny to see the interactions between Rajendra Nath and Prem Chopra when you keep in mind that in real life Prem Chopra is married to Rajendra Nath’s sister.

Saira Banu as the leading lady is good. This role seems to be written especially for her. Though a fan of many actresses of those times (and there were a lot of good actresses those times) I can’t visualise any other actress in this role. Kudos to Saira Banu. Durga Khote as the dadi as very effective. Now I must confess I know her from a film that was released almost 12-13 years later – Karz (the original Rishi Kapoor one that is) and her role in this movie reminded me of her role in Karz. But she did very well. And finally I must mention the name of an actor whom I like very much (mostly thanks to the Hrishikesh Mukherjee films) but whose name mostly doesn;t ring any bells for most viewers – David Abraham. David as he was billed in the movies portrays the role of Clause Rains in this movie and is fun in his short role. The entire cast was well chosen and each and every member did their best. No complaints here.

Now since this is a movie released in the times when the soundtrack of a hindi movie produced gems of songs, let’s have a look at the music of this film.

Shankar Jaikishan compsed 8 songs for this film which were sung by Mohd. Rafi (this was before Kishore Kumar took over the nation), Lata Mangeshkar and Asha Bhonsle. All the composed songs are well placed in the film and enhance the story (an aspect that is missing in today’s times and movies in general).

According to me 4 to 5 songs that were composed for this movie became immortal. The songs I mean are Sachha Hai Gar Pyaar (part 1 and 2), Kaun Hai Joh Sapnon Mein Aaya (inspired by the Elivs Presley song “Margarita”), Kahan Chal Diye Idhar Toh Aao and my personal favourite from the movie “Unse Milli Nazar ke Mere Hosh Udh Gaye”.

There is one thing however which I would like to mention for the people who have only seen this movie on dvd: When i watched the movie as a kid on VHS I remember seeing the song “Sachha Hai Gar Pyaar Mera Sanam” part 2 in the movie. But for some reason -and I really can’t fathom why- this song was deleted from all dvd versions. I remember the song was picturised when Rajendra Kumar goes to heaven after his car crash right before the interval point this song was picturised on him and David. But like I mentioned this song is deleted from all DVD’s. If anyone has a VHS copy of this movie just check out the song – it’s really a very beautiful song. And if you have the VHS please let me know.

“Jhuk Gaya Aasmaan” (1968)

directed by Lekh Tandon

music by Shankar – Jaikishan

singers Mohd. Rafi, Lata Mangeshkar, Asha Bhonsle

cast Rajendra Kumar, Saira Banu, Durga Khote, Prem Chopra and Rajendra Nath

Jeet (1996)

 

Sajid Jeet

Producer Sajid Nadiadwala  (who also is a director now) had started his career as an associate producer with the classic “Patthar Ke Sanam” which featured Manoj Kumar, Waheeda Rehman and Mumtaz in the leading roles. When he branched out on his own and started his own productionhouse Nadiadwala Grandson -one of the most respectable production houses today – he wasn’t that lucky at first.                                                             He started with the “The Godfather” inspired  “Zulm Ki Hukumat” which had Dharmendra in the Marlon Brando role and Govinda in the  Al Pacino role. The film did not do too well though I liked it (maybe because I am one of the biggest Govinda fans). After that movie came  “Waqt Humaara Hai” which did okay business. This movie will be remembered as the first movie which had the Akshay Kumar – Sunil Shetty combination. The film also featured Mamta Kulkarni, Anupam Kher, Jhonny Lever and one of my favourite ’90s actresses -Ayesha Jhulka.  Andolan which followed wasn’t that a big hit either, The movie had Govinda and Sanjay Dutt in the leading roles but was not your usual Govinda – Sanjay Dutt kind of film they made with David Dhawan during the ’90s. Then came 1996 and this would become the year that would change everything for Sajid and his productionhouse.                                                                                                              This would be the year that he would produce his first film with someone who would become a friend for life…

sallu

Raj Kanwar was a director who made 16 films in a span of 18 years. The thing with Raj Kanwar was that when he made a good film the film was really really good and had much repeat value. But when he made a bad film it was really cringe worthy.

Raj Kanwar Jeet

Like Yash Chopra had his heroines named “Chandni” Raj Kanwar had quite a few leading ladies named “Kaajal”.  Another thing common in quite a few Raj Kanwar movies was that through whatever circumstances the hero of the movie loved a girl in the movie that he would not get in the movie. According to me the best Raj Kanwar movies were the Rishi Kapoor- Divya Bharti film  “Deewana” which was Shah Rukh Khan’s debut movie, Laadla which had Anil Kapoor and Raveena Tandon in the lead along with Sridevi who took over the role when the heroine of the movie Divya Bharti died. “Dhai Aksar prem Ke” was another movie of his which I liked which was based on the Keanu reeves movie  “A Walk In the Clouds” and had Abhishek Bachchan and Aishwariya Rai in the lead roles. Fun aspect of this movie is that the movie also had Salman Khan in a cameo. And finally his best movie according to me is the 1996 released  “Jeet”.

“Jeet” is kind of a remake of the 1988 film  “Rukhsat” which was directed by actress Simi Garewal. “Jeet” had Sunny Deol, Salman Khan, karishma Kapoor and Amrish Puri in the leading roles and a guest appearance by Tabu.

This movie was quite an intense love story in which it was hard for me to root for one hero because both Sunny Deol and Salman Khan were two of my favourites then and both still are. I have read quite a few posts which say that “Sunny Deol ne Salman Khan ke chhuti kar di is film mein” with which I dont agree. I can see why some people might say this but one should not forget that Sunny Deol was THE main lead of the movie and had the author backed role in the movie. You might say that Sunny Deol was the Amitabh Bachchan of this movie and Salman Khan was the Vinod Khanna/ Shatrughan Sinha / Shashi Kapoor of the movie. The real movie buffs will understand exactly what I mean with this. But all of the actors be it Salman, Sunny or Karishma performed very well in this movie. For me the performance by Sunny in this movie is up there with Ghayal and Damini. Tabu in a guest appearance leaves a lasting impression and the only regret I have is that Tabu her role is too short. Though Karishma Kapoor gave one of her best performances in this movie according to me I would have loved it if her and Tabu’s role would have been reversed : Tabu in the Karishma role and vive versa.

NS Jeet

 

Nadeem- Shravan who were the undisputed musical kings of the ’90s gave a wonderful soundtrack for this movie with songs which are hummed and remembered even today. This was the movie in which Sunny Deol did his famous  “ant-killing dance” for the first time during the song  “Yaara O Yaara”.

Nowadays a movie might have 1 good song in it or maybe 2 at the most. But during those ’90s – especially when the music was composed by Nadeem-Shravan-  the entire soundtrack of the movie used to have hummable and good songs. So does  “Jeet”                 Written by Sameer the songs were sung by the usual suspects : Kumar Sanu, Alka Yagnik, Udit Narayan, Kavita Krishnamurthy and Sadhana Sargam. In a rare move Shravan made his brother Vinod Rathod sing perhaps one of the most famous songs of his singing career. And the best song – according to me that is-  in the movie was picturised on Salman Khan and Karishma Kapoor and was sung by Alka Yagnik and a singer who wasn’t at the top of his game yet but had a great hit in that song – Sonu Nigam.  I should not forget to mention that this song was deleted from some dvd’s when the movie was first released.

JEET (1996)

produced by  Sajid Nadiadwala

directed by  Raj Kanwar

music by  Nadeem-Shravan

singers  Kumar Sanu, Alka Yagnik, Udit Narayan, Vinod Rathod, Kavita Krishnamurthy, Sadhana Sargam and Sonu Nigam

cast   Sunny Deol, Salman Khan, Tabu, Karishma Kapoor, Amrish Puri, Alok Nath and Dalip Tahil.

 

Anand (1971)

Hrishi Anand

Hrishikesh Mukherjee was a director who told very simple stories in a very entertaining way. An editor before turning director with the movie Musafir (Kishore Kumar and Dilip Kumar) he used to edit the movies made by Bimal Roy. Because he was a great editor his movies were never dull and were edited crisply.
He had a team he used to work with frequently. The team consisted of actors, writers, music directors. Lyricist Gulzar , music director R.D. Burman, singers Kishore Kumar and Lata Mangeshkar and supporting actors like David, Asrani, Utpal Dutt, Asit Sen and Devan Verma were some of the artists with whom he would frequently collaborate. Most actors in the ’70s and ’80s would feel privileged if they would be considered in a Hrishikesh Mukherjee film. This is a director who worked with actors ranging from Dev Anand, Raj Kapoor, Dilip Kumar and Amitabh Bachchan to actors like Anil Kapoor. A director who worked with leading ladies from actresses like Nutan, Tanuja, Sadhana to actresses like Zeenat Aman and Juhi Chawla.

He was also the director who made the maximum number of films with Amitabh Bachchan. A respectable feat if you consider that Hrishikesh never succumbed to using Amitabh in the Angry Young Man persona in the “Salim-Javed” kind of way.
Some of the most memorable movies directed by Hrishikesh Mukherjee were Musafir (1957)

Anari (1959), Mem Didi (1961 in which Tanuja , Kaajols mom, was introduced as a leading lady), Asli Naqli (1962 Dev Anand, Sadhana), Satyakam (1969 Dharmendra, Sanjeev Kumar), Bawarchi (1972 Rajesh Khanna, Jaya Bhaduri Bachchan), Abhimaan (1973 Amitabh Bachchan, Jaya Badhuri Bachchan), Namak Haraam (1973 Amitabh Bachchan, Rajesh Khanna, Rekha),Bemisaal (1982 Amitabh Bachchan, Raakhee, Vinod Mehra) and many more.

Anand 01

Anand was actually based on the friendship between Hrishikesh Mukherjee and actor Raj Kapoor. Because Hrishikesh could not even think of his friend Raj Kapoor die on-screen the role was not offered to him. The movie was initially going to be made with Kishore Kumar and Mahmood in the leading roles. But due to a misunderstanding between Hrishikesh and Kishore Kumar this combination did not work out.

Rajesh Khanna got the role of Anand and after Aradhana this is one of his best performances ever. It is hard to imagine another actor in this role. Rajesh Khanna was born to play Anand. Anand has cancer in the movie and knows he is dying. But instead of feeling sorry for himself and feeling helpless he wants to enjoy life and make the most of the time he has left. The next quote from the movie sums it up very nicely “Zindagi lambi nahin, badi honi chahiye”. He meets his doctor friend Ramesh Deo, the doctor’s wife Seema Deo whom he comes to see as his sister. One of the highlights in this movie according to me is during a party at the doctor’s home. Anand’s bhabhi/sister does not know that he is dying and asks her brother for his “aashirwad” (blessings). Now it is important to know that usually the elders bless with saying “Tujhe meri umar bhi lagajaaye”. And as she walks away and before Rajesh Khanna starts to sing the next song het whispers “Abe main kya kahoon bahen? Main yeh bhi nahin keh sakta ke tujhe meri umar lag jaaye”. Very subtle but this is one of the instances when we glance into Anand’s real soul and his true feelings. The mask comes off for just a few seconds.

Another person he meets and befriends is a doctor who wants to help him and eventually takes Anand in his home. They become best friends. “Babu Moshai”, a role played by an unknown actor named Amitabh Bachchan who got the Filmfare award for best supporting actor for his portrayal. Though Anand belongs to Rajesh Khanna, no doubt about that, you could sense that Amitabh would be a threat to Rajesh Khanna and Rajesh would eventually lose his throne to the best actor the Indian screen has ever had – Amitabh Bachchan.
Hrishikesh Mukherjee is the only director to have had Amitabh Bachchan and Rajesh Khanna as the leading men in the same movie. The second and last movie the two actors did together was also by Hrishikesh Mukherjee, Namak Haraam. Though Simmi Garewal was Amitabh’s leading lady in that movie and Rekha was Rajesh Khannas leading lady, fortunes had already changed and Rajesh Khanna was not the big star anymore. By this time the people had already fallen in love with and embraced the “angry young man”. After many years they would share screen space for a minute or so during the song “John Johnny Janardhan” picturised by Manmohan Desai for the movie “Naseeb”.

But like i said ANAND belongs to Rajesh Khanna. When you watch the movie closely you will notice that though Rajesh Khanna has no love track in the movie, it is very subtly mentioned that he had a girlfriend. Also mentioned is that she got married when he became ill. The day she got married Rajesh Khanna moved to Bombay. Rajesh Khanna as Anand wants to spread joy all around and does not want anybody to see the pain he has. I am including a clip of a song here. Just watch the expressions of Rajesh Khanna. This is wonderful

The music in this movie was by Salil Choudhury and all the songs are evergreen gems. Though Kishore Kumar was the voice of Rajesh Khanna this movie has no Kishore songs. The songs are sung by Mukesh, Manna Dey and Lata Mangeshkar. Kahin Door Jab Din, Maine Tere Liye, Zindagi kaisi hai paheli and Jiya Lage na are all classics

ANAND 1971
directed by Hrishikesh Mukherjee
music by Salil Choudhury
singers Mukesh, Lata and Manna Dey
cast Amitabh Bachchan, Rajesh Khanna, Lalita Pawar, Ramesh Deo, Seema Deo, Jhonny Walker and others