Bhappi Sonie month continues here on MemsaabStory with Tum Haseen Main Jawan—notable for being Dharmendra and Hema Malini’s first film together. Their romance is reason enough to watch, but there are plenty of other masala ingredients to keep any filmi fan happy too! Lively songs from Shankar Jaikishan; Helen and Pran as husband and wife; Rajendranath and Iftekhar; and not one, but two misplaced kids. Okay, there are some plot holes you could drive a pantechnicon through, but we’ve forgiven others for worse.
A wealthy man has just died and his will is being read in front of his relatives. The man’s son Ranbir had married a woman named Gayatri Devi against his wishes and been disowned; now he wishes to reinstate his son, wife and their child as his heirs.
This does not go down well with the wealthy man’s nephew Ranjit (Pran), although Ranjit’s lovely wife Jina (Helen) tries to make him see reason. The lawyer has discovered that Ranbir has passed away, and that Gayatri Devi is about to give birth—but her whereabouts are unknown. According to the will, she and her child must be found before February 12 or Ranjit inherits everything. Ranjit orders his man Zorawar (CS Dubey) to find her, and he does: she is in Cochin Hospital, having just given birth to a son.
Meanwhile, at Cochin Hospital the wily lawyer is meeting with Gayatri’s father Raja Sahab (Iftekhar) and sister Anuradha (Hema Malini). He knows that the baby is in danger from Ranjit, and the baby is registered as Anuradha’s to keep him safe. Gayatri has lost a lot of blood and needs a transfusion, but her father and sister’s blood doesn’t match. In confidence, Raja Sahab tells the doctor that Gayatri is not really his daughter.
In another part of town, Sunil (Dharmendra), Romeo (Rajendranath) and their friends are on leave from their ship enjoying themselves at a club. They are entertained by a provocative striptease, and naturally a brawl breaks out. Fists fly; chairs, bottles and glasses are broken; white women pull each other’s hair. The jazz combo continues to play calmly through the mayhem, which cracks me up.
Of course, the sailors end up at the hospital, where Sunil’s blood type luckily matches Gayatri’s. I wonder if there’s a little moralizing here since the doctor keeps repeating that the blood banks are empty at all the hospitals, but maybe I’m overthinking it. Sunil donates a few pints to save Gayatri, flirts shamelessly with the nurses, and he and his buddies are patched up and on their way.
Once Gayatri’s life is out of danger, she agrees sadly to the lawyer’s plan to have Anuradha keep the baby until February 12; it’s not clear to me why they don’t just take the baby immediately to the court and declare him the heir, but I guess then there would be no story. They are taking no chances!
Of course not! Who would? By the way, this film has a wee subtitle issue too:
In spite of the elaborate precautions, however, Ranjit is lying in wait outside the hospital and follows Anuradha and her fruit basket from the hospital. She sees a fruit seller by the road and stops…and in a move which I can only shake my head at, she switches the baby-filled basket for one containing actual fruit and drives off.
What could possibly go wrong? Plenty, of course. Minutes later, Sunil and friends pull up in a jeep and buy—you guessed it!—the fruit-baby basket. Anuradha tells Ranjit when he catches up to her that Gayatri’s baby was still-born and goes back to retrieve him, only to see Sunil et al driving off. They get back to their ship just in time to set sail. All this and only 20 minutes have passed!
In the interests of speeding this review along, suffice it to say that after some comic “helpless men and a baby” adventures; a flight to Bombay; a chance meeting between Anuradha and Jina which blossoms into friendship (Anuradha doesn’t know she is Ranjit’s wife, nor does Jina know that Anuradha is Gayatri’s sister); and a spectacular Helen dance complete with sneezing fits (and bongo-drumming backup dancers):
Anuradha finally finds the baby at Sunil’s house, where she is mistaken as an applicant for the governess post he’s advertised. That’s just fine with her—it seems as good a place to stay until February 12 as any. Sunil comes home after a night out to find his new governess sleeping in his bed. Surprise!
Honestly, the chemistry between them positively sizzles from the get-go. Sunil is impressed with her cooking, and asks her to cook for him and a “friend” that evening. Sunil’s servant Bansidhar (Mohan Choti) is not a fan of this “friend”:
He asks if Anuradha will help him get rid of her and she agrees. Dinner is a disaster, needless to say. They get rid of the next girl who comes to meet him, too.
Bansi tells Anuradha that he thinks she should marry Sunil; Anuradha shyly admits that she finds him attractive. Sunil is furious when he gets home though, and he fires her. The baby cooperates nicely by starting to scream as soon as she leaves.
May I say that Indian baby cradles are awesome? Everybody should have one! Plus one of those swings (jhoola, I think they’re called). But I digress.
When even donning a sari himself doesn’t soothe the baby, Sunil begs Anuradha to come back. Who could resist this killer combo?
Not Anuradha! The next day she takes the baby and visits her friend Jina. As she is leaving, Ranjit’s henchman Zorawar sees Anuradha with the baby and recognizes her. He calls Ranjit immediately; Ranjit goes to the Cochin hospital and figures out everything in about five minutes. So much for all that careful planning!
Meanwhile, back at Sunil’s, Bansi and Anuradha aren’t making much headway with Sunil on the romance front. Bansi suggests that he take Anuradha to a party on board the ship for a little break from the baby; Sunil scoffs at the idea of taking a governess to a party and leaves. Romeo arrives a few minutes later and Bansi talks him into taking her instead. When they arrive, Sunil is instantly smitten.
He can’t quite place her (a sparkly blue wig will do that), and she snubs him. Playboy Sunil is unused to this treatment and pursues her…and eventually figures out who she is.
They seal their love with a lively song, and all is well.
But wait! Ranjit is about to reappear. Also Sunil’s mother arrives to meet Anuradha, and guess what? Sunil has a long-lost sister.
Hmmm. I wonder!
Ranjit shows up at Sunil and Anuradha’s engagement party, and tells everyone that Anuradha is his wife and the baby theirs. He makes Sunil call the hospital in Cochin. The doctor there confirms that Anuradha is the baby’s mother, and Sunil is shocked and heartbroken. Then Bansi discovers that Anuradha has left with the baby.
Will Sunil discover the truth? Where will Anuradha and the baby go? Will Ranjit find them and succeed in inheriting his uncle’s estate? Will Sunil’s Maa ever find her missing beti? Could even Pran be capable of killing a baby?
Celebrate Bhappi Sonie month with Memsaab and watch it to find out!