Archive for April 19th, 2008

April 19, 2008

Mera Gaon Mera Desh (1971)

Widely considered the inspiration for Sholay, this film is quite simply awesome. It’s much smaller in scale, but director Raj Khosla’s deft treatment of the same themes, the pace and the fantastic performances by everyone make it just as compelling. Laxmikant-Pyarelal’s tunes are foot-tappingly addictive too.

Laxmi Chhaya is especially impressive in her role as a dancer spying for the dacoits. Besides her dancing ability (she’s memorable as the girl in the golden dress in “Jaan Pehchaan Ho” from Gumnaam), she has acting skills too. She very competently played Asha Parekh’s best friend in Teesri Manzil, and she’s beautiful to boot. But in all her films (sadly few in number) she was relegated to secondary roles and bit parts. I don’t get it.

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