Do Raaste (1969)

I love films that give insight into the issues and concerns of the time during which it was made. This is one of them, where a family is ripped apart when its members are caught between old traditions and burgeoning foreign influences.

Although Rajesh Khanna and Mumtaz are nominally the hero and heroine, the film really belongs to the whole ensemble cast. Above all, Balraj Sahni shows why he is considered one of the great actors in Hindi cinema and Veena shines as the family matriarch.

Narendu (Balraj Sahni) is the head of a household that includes his stepmother Mrs. Gupta (Veena); younger stepbrothers Viju (Prem Chopra) and Satyen (Rajesh Khanna); stepsister Geeta (Kumud Bole); and his own wife Madhavi (Kamini Kaushal) plus their two children Raju (Jr. Mehmood) and Guddi.

Narendu’s father has long since passed away, but the family remain as close-knit as if they were blood relatives, and live together in harmony. Narendu has worked hard to care for and educate all of them, as he had promised his father he would do.

Satyen attends a local college, where he meets and falls in love with the feisty Reena (Mumtaz).

This takes up the first 45 minutes or so of the film, until Viju returns with an Engineering degree from a university in England. The story then changes from light-hearted romance to family drama.

Narendu has borrowed money to pay for Viju’s education and now dreams of being able to take it a little easy since Viju will have a good job and be able to share the burden. When Viju returns, he brings gifts for the whole family.

In England, Viju has fallen in love with fellow student Neela (Bindu)—who happens to be Reena’s sister—and soon after returning, they get married. Neela and Reena’s combative parents Allopi (Asit Sen) and Bhagwanti (Leela Mishra) are not happy together despite being well-off. Bhagwanti offers Neela some advice before her wedding: don’t live with all your husband’s relatives.

But going along with Viju’s wishes, Neela moves into the Gupta household anyway. Trouble begins almost immediately. There’s little privacy:

When Neela gets rid of all the old furnishings and installs new, expensive things it ruffles Mrs. Gupta and Satyen’s feathers. Narendu tries to smooth things over by accommodating Neela’s wishes, but she and Satyen quarrel further when she chastises Raju and Guddi for messing with “her” radio.

Stung by her selfish attitude, Satyen retaliates by moving all of “her” new things into hers and Viju’s room.

[Side note: Raj Khosla directed this, although it’s not his usual mystery-thriller. I love the way he always frames scenes in a way that makes the viewer into a voyeur: looking through a window, or into a mirror’s reflection, or a peephole.

(Side note to the side note: the caps above are from the lovely “Bindiya Chamkegi” which is one of my all-time favorite Mumtaz songs. End side note to the side note.)

End side note.]

Viju and Satyen quarrel over Neela’s high-handedness. Narendu and Madhvi are caught in the middle. For the sake of peace, they plead with Satyen to apologize and he does, but the tension is still there. Mrs. Gupta warns Narendu that letting Neela get away with her actions is going to backfire. I love that she does not encourage his self-sacrificing ways!

Neela’s next move is to take charge of Viju’s monthly salary; she stops helping Narendu pay back the loan for Viju’s English education. When she allows some visiting friends to believe that Madhavi and Geeta are servants, it’s the last straw for Satyen.

Neela then turns her poisonous tongue on Mrs. Gupta, which even Madhavi and Narendu cannot tolerate. Neela seizes her chance to demand that Viju and she get their own apartment, and Viju caves.

As Narendu sits sadly by his beloved gramophone (which Neela had banished to his room from the main hall, in favor of her radio), Viju and Neela move out lock, stock and barrel under the watchful eyes of Narendu’s father (and the mirror, see side note above).

As if all this weren’t bad enough, disaster strikes.

On the same day that Narendu loses his job, Viju is promoted to General Manager of his company and throws a big party. The family hears about it from their neighbor Khan (Jayant), but are not invited. Mrs. Gupta is incensed at the insult to Narendu especially:

Then the money-lender comes knocking at the door, and he gives Narendu a week to pay back the loan or lose the house. This upsets Mrs. Gupta so much that she becomes ill. Her medical expenses add to Narendu’s worries.

As he sells off the family’s belongings to pay bills, Viju and Neela spend their evenings in nightclubs. Neela continues her campaign against his family and poisons Viju’s mind further against Narendu.

As the title song puts it: you must choose between the temple and the tavern.

What will happen? Will Narendu lose the family home? Will Satyen and Reena’s love survive? Will Viju ever wake up to what’s important in life? Is Neela irretrievably bad? Watch Do Raaste to find out.

It’s not a perfect film. Neela, upon whom the disintegration of the family revolves, comes across more as personally selfish and greedy than influenced in that direction by her time in the west, which somewhat weakens the message. But the film mostly avoids the stridently anti-western stereotypes that this genre often espouses; and it’s interesting that some western ideas are endorsed by older characters (especially Bhagwanti and to some extent Mrs. Gupta) for whom traditional ways didn’t work.

The thread running throughout which addresses the issue of family ties itself is stronger, although less compelling. The end deteriorates somewhat into melodrama too, and resolves itself a little too abruptly. Still, strong performances and the nuances in the story make this film stand out.

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52 Comments to “Do Raaste (1969)”

  1. Wow, I had to read the synopsis three times before I was sure I understood it; clearly my Hindi plotline skills need sharpening. This sounds very good.

  2. Or, it could be my haphazard writing :-)

    It is good; it has its faults, but they are minor in the scheme of things!

  3. Balraj sahni at his self-sacrificing best? Prem chopra a villanous vicxtim of sorts? Bindu vamping it on and Veena playing the righteous mom? I love this, despite Rajesh Khanna. I think I need a sweater from Wall Street, London too :)

  4. Raj Khosla directed this! Its certainly far from his slick thrillers. Its also an update on the 50s and early 60s family drama involving the rich [evil] daughter-in-law and poor Balraj Sahni did the sacrificing elder brother bit in a lot of those! Bhabhi (1957), Chhoti Behen (1959), Bhabhi Ki Choodiyaan (1961) – all had similar stories with Sahni playing the elder brother sacrificing ad infinitum. Considering that Bindu had Rajesh Khanna as a brother-in-law to deal with, she had a great deal of my sympathy! ;-)

  5. I think I might have a new career ahead of me as a Rajesh Khanna fan.

    I haven’t watched a lot of Balraj Sahni, although what I have seen is self-sacrificing in the extreme. But in this film I think there were enough people sticking up for him that it never became just an exercise in wallowing in self-pity. Also he is a really good actor, and so it’s more subtle than, say, Meena Kumari’s endless weeping! :-)

  6. O Balraj Sahni was never in the same class as Meena Kumari – but then nobody else ever was! :-D He did have lots of great movies where he did do other things besides sacrifice. You should check out Sone Ki Chidiya (Nutan and Talat Mahmood costarred) and Seema (also with Nutan) – both of which are really sweet and romantic.

  7. Thanks, bollyviewer! I will see if I can find both of those films. Appreciate the recommendations :-)

  8. The only Balraj Sahni movie I think I’ve ever seen is Waqt (1965), with everyone’s favorite Shashi Kapoor! :D

    I also bought Do Bigha Zameen (1953) several years ago but haven’t gotten around to watching it yet. I heard he really tried to get into the skin of his character of a rickshaw driver by literally becoming one for several weeks.

    Come to think of it I’ve probably seen more films with his son, Parikshit, in them… but I don’t think he ever made it as big.

    As for Do Raaste, it sounds like a helluva film. I always liked the music (Chup Gaye Sare Nazare being my personal favorite of the bunch). I guess I’ll have to check this movie out!

  9. I liked Do Raaste quite a lot. Self-sacrifice is normally something that makes me run screaming, but it was understated and there were so many other things that were good.

  10. Seema is a lovely flim indeed – both Nutan and Balraj Sahani did a fab job.

    Membsaab, after reading ur reviews, I think u will like Seema. It is a BW movie. I saw it on Doordarshan ages ago in India!

  11. Some good Rajesh Khanna movies include – Aradhna, Kati Patang, Amar Prem, Anand, Safar, Aan Milo Sajna, Kudrat, Mehbooba, Thodisi Bewafaii

    Looking forward to your review of these movies! Happy watching!

  12. I will look for Seema :-) Thanks! I have reviewed Kati Patang here already along with a few other Rajesh Khanna films. I have seen Aradhana, Anand, Aan Milo Sajna and Mehbooba but all a while ago so would have to rewatch them, which of course I am more than willing to do!

    I’m about to post another of his films which I really enjoyed too :-)

  13. Normally i don’t like 2 see Rajesh Khanna’s films bcoz of his over acting.He is lucky enough that the gr8 singer Kishore kumar sang for him and tat the only reason of his once time popularity.By the way Bindia Chamke Gi is 1 of my fav songs.

  14. Yes, he can really chew up the scenery sometimes. He doesn’t in this film though, and doesn’t have as big a part—the film is really more about Balraj Sahni’s character..

    Bindiya Chamkegi is a great song :-)

  15. Hey…Anupam kher’s directorial debut OM JAI JAGDISH borrows heavily from this one…almost all of it infact..not a bad movie that was too///

  16. Refering to your comments about RK dated 7th Aug, I agree that this film
    has other actors also playing important characters yet RK is considered as a main hero, I suppose.
    Almost all the songs have been picturised on him and he had been given good footage in the film.
    About his doing overacting at times, I feel he is more of a director’s artist.
    By this I mean; he performs brilliantly whenever handled by a good director e.g movies like Anand, Safar, Amar Prem to name a few.However he gave lousy performances in many other movies to such an extent that it is difficult to accept that he is the same person.
    But yes though I am a big fan of young Rajesh Khanna , I know in my heart that he many a times he tends to do things on screen which does not suite him.

  17. One of the things I like about Rajesh Khanna is that he doesn’t seem to mind sharing screen space or being part of an ensemble, like he is here. I suppose like most of us, he had some jobs that he liked better than others and extended himself for :-)

  18. One of the great things about your reviews Memsaab, is that they inspire a re-watch and re-discovery of all the good stuff in these oldies. What catharsis after the weep fest in this one! And such beautiful songs.

    Incidentally, with reference to your third screen cap, our Bombay filmdom knew their clothes better than we give them credit for—here obviously the subtitling is the culprit. Viju actually notes he got the pullover for Satyen from Bond Street in London not Wall Street. Indian subtitlers of the 60s would’ve picked up the correct reference whereas this one didn’t probably because he’s grown up in an India where the American influence dominates. Not so in the 60s and 70s when Britain “Vilayat” dominated the foreign shores discourse.

  19. this film is one of my favorite family dramas, i loved everyones acting in it. but isnt this the film where rajesh khanna has a beard in one scene & doesnt in the next.?

  20. Yup to the last comment on his now here now gone beard! He was shooting for Yash Chopra’s Ittefaq simultaneously where he was required to have one. They tried to explain this away early on in the film in a conversation that Mumu has with her friend who describes him as shaving once a week. Mumu calls him “dirty fellow” in that inimitable accent! Falls a bit flat though when in supposedly contiguous scenes he looks different!

  21. Ahh…continuity. One of the pleasures of Hindi films :) Especially when some halfhearted attempt to explain the lack of it is made.

  22. Saw this movie last night. Really enjoyed it. Balraj Sahani was a bonus for me coz I really had no idea that he is in the movie. Wow! I quite liked Rajesh Khanna in this movie. Mumu of course was at her gorgeous best. Another good Rajesh Khanna – Mumtaaz movie is Dushman. All the songs are fab in Do Raaste.

    I am going to hunt for other mumu movies on my next visit to India. For the present I have Loafer in my yet to watch pile!

    BTW, great review as usual

  23. Memsaab I have started reading your bolg just today and am truly delighted with it. As an American, you tend not to appraoch Indian films with the same patronizing attitude as as lot of us have. I especially loved to read about the “character actors” whose names I had never known before.
    Congratulations on your great piece of writing.

    • I’m glad you are enjoying it :) I don’t know that my non-patronizing (I hope, at least mostly) attitude is because I am American, or because I just really really love the movies (with exceptions of course!) :)

  24. I watched this movie more than a decade back and the one scene that’s stuck with me is the death scene of Rajesh Khanna’s mother. She’s delirous and the dialogues are absolutely heart-wrenching.

    I firmly believe that at the time of death, the entire life passes in front of a person as if he/she is watching a movie. This scene is depicted beautifully in the movie.

  25. Thanks memsaab, On your writing on Do Raaste – 1969 its one of the classic movie of Super Star Rajesh Khanna ever can be made.

    Rajesh Khanna – The Greatest Living Legend and the real & only Super Star of Indian Cinema till date.

    There are romantic leading men and there are romantic leading men, but very few have taken cinematic love to legendary heights. While there might be other icons but Super-Star- Actor Rajesh Khanna after four decades, he is the ultimate true romantic legend.

  26. I have one major doubt regarding this film.
    According to the filmfare function conducted in year 1971, Do raaste was nominated for best story of year 1970.

    this means do raate was not released in 1969 but 1970.

    Rajesh Khanna had Aradhana, Ittefaq, Bandhan and Doli – strictly in this order in year 1969.

    then why in many places its written that Do Raaste was released in same year as the other 4 major hits?
    Aradhana was released in 1969 so was nominated for best film of year 1969 in filmfare function conducted in 1970 so this specifies that if Do Raaste waas nominated in 1971 then it was released only in 1970.

  27. I am surprised that no one has mentioned here that this movie was based on a Marathi novel – are there any Maharashtrians reading this ? I am not too sure but I think the novel was called – Neelambari which explains Bindu’s character’s name.
    There was Jeetendra’s Khandan also loosely based on a similar plot.

  28. Excellent review!!! I LOVE this film.. as you rightly said.. it depicts the social issues during the time it was made!! This is totally a Balraj Sahni film. I simply adore him.. he has a way of totally getting into the character he plays.. be it a poor farmer or rich lawyer..

    Just one comment… I think his character name in this film is Navendu (or Nevendu) and not Narendu.. if I recall it correctly.

  29. Sorry, this is pretty long but I came across this very interesting piece on Bindu and ‘Do Raaste’. The link to the source is at the end.

    “…As I mentioned earlier, I did a lot of work in the film media but not a single feature film except Anpadh, which was years ago. Then, one day after my marriage, we had invited Lakshmikantji, my brother-in-law for dinner. He didn’t arrive till late so we went to fetch him at the recording room at Filmcenter. Director Raj Khosla was there too, working on the music of Anita. When he spotted me, he came up to me and asked, “are you interested in films?” I was taken aback completely. Of course, I was interested and had tried to get a break several times but not been successful. Always, directors would reject me because they found me either too tall or too thin. Ironically, later on in my career these same comments changed to my advantage, but then that’s natural.

    Back to Raj Khosla, he told me that he wasn’t offering me the female lead. “My film is based on a novel called ‘Neelambari’. I am offering you the title character, but it’s a negative role. The story of the film however revolves around you.” He also told me that the heroine of the film would be Mumtaz. The film was Do Raaste.

    I was too stunned and requested him to allow me 15-20 days time to think over the offer. He agreed. I went home and sought my mother’s and husband’s advice. Their first reaction was, “It’s up to you. If you want to do a negative role, do it.” Later on of course, my husband had second thoughts.” “Why do you want to join films?” he asked. “Because it’s a passion with me and desires like these cannot be suppressed,” I replied. He thought for a while. “Alright. Do this one film and if it flops, promise me you won’t do another,” he said finally. I accepted this condition and said yes to Raj Khosla’s offer.

    Now was my chance to prove wrong all those directors who had written me off without a trial. My screen test was taken on the sets of Chiraag. The unit had packed up but Sunil Dutt and Asha Parekh were still there. I had to enact the same lines that Ashaji had spoken that day in one of the shots. I passed the test easily and was signed for Do Raaste.

    I remember very clearly the first shot I gave for the film. It was with Balraj Sahni, Jayant (Amjad Khan’s father) and Rajesh Khanna. I had prepared for it, learnt my lines and it went off very well. Everyone was happy with me. One of them even said that it didn’t look as if this was my first film.

    One day, during the lunch break everyone was relaxing on the sets, when Raj Khosla turned to me and said, “you see, I have made many films. Some have been hits and some, flops.(In those days before Do Raaste, Raj Khosla was going through a bad phase.) You are new to my unit. So, let’s see if you can bring me good luck.” Suddenly, I felt scared with this responsibility. What if the film did badly? What if something went wrong with the project? So, I began praying and made a vow that once the shooting was over, I’d take the script to Tirupathi for the blessing of Lord Venkatesh.

    The film was completed and even though I asked Raj Khosla several times, he’d forget to give me the script. Finally, I went to Tirupathi with some dialogue sheets that I had with me. At the temple, only those who have strong influence are allowed closer darshan. The rest have to brave the crowds. But I was lucky. The next day, a VIP was scheduled for a special darshan, so I requested the pujari to allow me at the same time. He agreed informing me, “come very early so that you can join the VIP’s party.” The following morning, at five o’clock, when the VIP and his entourage performed the first aarti, I was among them. I whispered to the pujari to touch the sheets of paper to the feet of the Lord for me. As he did so, I quietly murmured, “God, please save me.” And he did. Do Raaste went on to become a big hit and even completed a golden jubilee. This was way back in 1969.

    As Do Raaste moved towards a hit, I got my first taste of fame. Whenever I went out, people pointed towards me and called out, “Bindu, Bindu.” I couldn’t believe this was happening to me. I felt very excited and more than me, my sisters and friends felt very proud of my performance. Though I loved every bit of the flattery, I didn’t let it go to my head.”

    On Rajesh Khanna in this film, Bindu has noted elsewhere:

    “….I began shooting for the film. This time, I didn’t bother with my looks, but concentrated more on my performance. The first scene of the film began with a dhamaka. I was supposed to yell at Rajesh Khanna who is an uninvited guest at my party. Rajesh Khanna was on the verge of becoming a star. Aradhana and his other films had not been released but he was being touted as a superstar already. People used to say that he was arrogant but I have never felt so. He was always very friendly, very sweet to me.

    And also about the film’s success:

    “….Initially, the reports were average. But a week later the whole scenario changed. The film was publicized by way of word. And collections picked up drastically. Do Raaste was declared a golden jubilee hit.”

    • Just finished reading the article on Bindu! Good thing she acted in Do Raaste, good she was spotted by Raj Khosla, or else we would all have been deprived of an excellent actress and dancer. You are definitely a store house of information!

  30. Sorry, am hogging your comments space :-) but here’s another piece on ‘Do Raaste’ and RK and Mumu amongst other things. Given that you’re the repository of all things awesome as far as old Hindi films are concerned, am taking the liberty of putting it here. The link to the source is at the end.

    “A long, long time ago, when the reigning Badshah of Bollywood would have been a toddler and the Shehenshah was just a newcomer, struggling to find his feet in the film industry, one man, single-handedly rewrote the rules of stardom.

    The epithet, ‘superstar’, was used for the first time for Rajesh Khanna, who, with his handsome ‘boy-next-door’ freckled looks, stylised mannerisms and loads of talent elevated star status to a much higher plane, which, hitherto, even the iconic trio of Raj Kapoor, Dev Anand and Dilip Kumar had failed to accomplish. In “Do Raaste”, he was at the zenith of his prowess as an actor, capable of generating unprecedented mass hysteria that became part of folklore – as stories of girls writing love letters in blood – spread like wildfire.

    The film, based on a novel by Chandrakant Kakodkar (which won the film its sole Filmfare award that year, for the best story), was adapted for the silver screen by G.R. Kamath, while Akhtar Rohani wrote the dialogues. Raj Khosla, who produced, as well as directed the film, had a winner at hand the moment he finalised the cast and crew, including music composers Laxmikant-Pyarelal and lyricist Anand Bakshi.

    Needless to say, they created sheer magic, giving Hindi film industry some of its biggest and most enduring chartbusters of all time, including “Bindiya Chamkegi”, “Yeh Reshmi Zulfein”, “Chhup Gaye Saare Nazare” and “Mere Naseeb Mein Ae Dost”. Khosla demonstrated panache for shooting song sequences in style. Kishore Kumar, who later became the voice of Rajesh Khanna, sang only one song for the actor in this film, the other two were by Mohammed Rafi.

    Box-office success

    The story of the film played a major part in scripting its box-office success, based as it was on the trials and tribulations of a lower middle class family (with some characters that could loosely be identified from the epic Ramayana- the dutiful eldest step-son, who is his stepmother’s favourite and works tirelessly for the betterment of his family and younger siblings, his long suffering wife, who is the epitome of dignity and sacrifice, the respectful youngest brother and the selfless friend).

    The story played on the emotions that have dominated the Indian psyche for ages – respect for elders, paramount status of the mother, sanctity of the joint family and supremacy of relations that are stronger than ties of blood. Khosla managed to infuse his rendition with dollops of pathos – although a tauter editing could have made the film more enjoyable.

    These days, a lot of emphasis is laid on the ‘chemistry’ of ‘jodis’ by fly-by-night judges, proliferating on reality shows that are aired dime a dozen on all channels. They just need to watch Khanna serenading a voluptuous Mumtaz in the film to know what chemistry is all about.

    The actress, who graduated from doing lead roles in C-grade stunt films to side roles in mainstream cinema to being the topmost female star of her times speaks volumes of her calibre as an actress and perseverance as a fighter.

    Whether clad in a sober salwar-kameez, eyes covered with dark sunglasses in “Yeh Reshmi Zulfein” (with an unshaven Khanna) or drenched in rain for “Chhup Gaye Saare Nazare” or clad in a bright orange sari for “Bindiya Chamkegi”, (a modern day Shakuntala, out to win the attention of Khanna, who is busy studying on his terrace) she manages to seduce the camera with her pout and underplayed sensuality.

    She was indeed the ultimate diva, who induced a million fantasies.Only Sridevi, in later years, managed to essay roles that Mumtaz did so effortlessly.

    The support cast of the film also added to its view-ability, with a list of A-grade actors in main roles. Balraj Sahni (as the eldest of the three brothers and one sister), Kamini Kaushal as his dutiful wife, Prem Chopra as the wayward middle-brother, Bindu as Chopra’s westernised wife, Asit Sen as Bindu’s laid back, but good natured father and Leela Mishra as his scheming wife, all jelled into the roles they have essayed innumerable number of times.

    Veteran actor Jayant, as the wide bodied, large hearted Khan bhai – bringing in the secular touch – who stands by the family in difficult times, dealt the character with maturity, in a role, which, in the hands of a lesser actor could have become a caricature.

    One area where Khosla, despite his adept handling of the story, could not restrict himself from falling in the trap was in depiction of college pals of Khanna and Mumtaz – the Parsi, Punjabi and Bengali students were too predictable to elicit any laughter with their antics.

    Khanna is perhaps one of the most heart-rending tragedies of the Hindi film industry. His decline from being an icon to a captive of his stylised mannerisms, into which he straitjacketed himself, did not do justice, neither to his immense talent nor to legions of his fans. A fine actor, who did not hesitate to portray different roles, he lost track midway in an industry notorious for being ruthless and unforgiving. How one wishes that he had straddled into the sunset like a colossus.”

    • Great article about Rajesh Khanna! Pardon my ignorance, but I have one question – who is the reigning Baadshah and who is the Shehenshah of Bollywood? I don’t watch current movies, unless they are brought into my house by friends, and even then, I have a whole bunch of DVD’s lying out there, unwatched, because I am not sure it is going to be good, and I would rather watch an old one, where I know all the songs and can sing along (even if it hurts everyone else’s auditory nerves!)

      • Lalitha: Reigning Baadshah = Shahrukh Khan; Shehenshah = Amitabh Bachchan! Possibly because both did films with those titles.

        • Thanks, and I didn’t even know that movies with those titles existed, and these guys acted in them! Such is the depth of my ignorance regarding movies made after, say, 1977!

    • Wonderful additions to the comments Suhan, thank you! :) Love especially hearing it straight from Bindu’s mouth :)

  31. Those are excellent articles, Suhan. Very informative and interesting. Thanks. And I did not know that Laxmikant of the L-P jodi was Bindu’s brother-in-law!

  32. Great review as always! I do wish I had seen this movie in the days when the songs were being played from every loudspeaker in Kolkata during the Puja season, because I was such an ardent RK fan in those days! Oh well – I will have to settle for watching it on a DVD now, if I can find one in the local store, or else try to find it online, just to watch Balraj Sahni – see how my interests have changed, now I watch to see the senior actors, not the heroes! And the credit goes to you, Greta, for sparking my interest!

  33. Watched the movie on TV recently. It was gripping in parts and Raj Khosla had shown the parts with the mother veena and son balraj sahni very well – especially the scene where tells that she prefers to stay with her step son. But there are too many unanswered questions which strike you when you watch the movie today. Bindu was the heroine of the movie and Mumtaz hardly had any role to play.
    Mumtaz was Bindu’s sister, yet, she remains pretty cool about what is happening with satyen’s family –
    doesn’t she talk to her sister at all ?
    what about the sister character ? where does she vanish half way through.
    sorry for sounding like a party pooper

    • I remember watching this movie long time back. Bindu’s mom has been burned by living in joint family (all relatives in a family) ; so she advises her against it. Bindu, having seen her mom suffer has vowed to have just her & hubby. On the other hand, mumtaz plays our typical heroine with good manners. She does argue with Bindu and try for her to change her way in vain.

  34. Just finished watching the movie today and felt it was far better than some of the movies that were released in the recent past! At least there was a story to follow and I could understand what it was all about, unlike some movies where I was left wondering what was going on, other than the songs and dances. Everybody seemed natural, Prem Chopra was not his usual villainy self, more of a helpless henpecked husband, and only Bindu’s sudden change of heart at the end was difficult to digest. All in all, it was good entertainment. Thanks, Greta!

  35. Dear Memsaab,

    Another wonderfully written review!! I saw the film yesterday (30SEP2012), and totally fell in love with it. My daughter loved it too. I am one of the biggest fans of the Rajesh – Mumtaz pairing. Everyone in the movie has done their bit, with no one going over the top. I especially enjoyed the interaction between Asit Sen and Leela Mishra. What songs!! I really find it difficult to choose a favorite. However, I have a bit of a soft corner for Mere Naseeb Mein by Kishoreda – the simple rhythm (4-beat percussion) really appealed to me.


  36. Watched this film recently (after being bitten by “the watch-all-Khosla-movies” bug). Great review as always, especially loved the “peephole” screenshots. Lovely observation, that !

    I was just a little let-down by the “modern bahu” who has a decent promising start in the film but rapidly deteriorates into pure bitchiness and evil (yet despite all that I still love this film)

    It must be noted that the scene related to the “no privacy” screenshot has Bindhu behaving extremely charmingly. She’s adorably laughing and enjoying the fun when Prem Chopra struggles awkwardly while trying to get the children out ! The movie really makes no effort to show intrusion of privacy at all, but from what I understood, making it look as if Bindhu’s nosy-parker mom’s spiteful brainwashing was the sole reason.

    An introductory (slightly wince-worthy) scene has Bindhu saying she’d like a civil marriage (no romp and palanquins and all that) and immediately Ma whispers an early warning to Narendu “This woman is NOT suitable for our family”. This is really the “old-generation clashing with the new”, two different viewpoints but this is dismissed at once (as all the “newly-returned-from-London jazz”) and not allowed to grow into an issue at all.

    Instead Bindhu just transforms into evil-witch incarnate. I mean, who takes her husband to watch a cabaret(?) dance when his mother is dying. And who removes the sacred-father-in-law portrait. Does this woman have no tact ? [Also aside note, why do all villainous bahus always start with refurnishing their in-laws house ? Case in point Nadira in Dil apna aur preet parai] And loses any chance at subtlety and winning any sympathy from the audience. So all her brilliant repartees to Ma about “you just like your elder bahu because she says yes to whatever you say” are totally wasted.

    Sorry for the rather long comment but it just felt like such a wasted opportunity. Of course, all this analysis is in hindsight and I cheered for and wept with Balraj Sahni whenever he appeared on screen :P

  37. If today you watch this movie, you cannot believe that it was such a big hit. It was only because of the star power of Rajesh Khanna during that time. Luck was in his favour. Mumtaz’s character is the most absurd of all – she is supposed to be Bindu’s sister yet she gets no opportunity to tell her sister that she is wrong. Legends like Raj Khosla erred too often and the public forgave them. But when they underestimated the audience, they got it back. Raj Khosla’s movie Sunny that released in 1985 was a box office disaster and Waheeda broke her promise to her mother by acting under the direction of Raj Khosla. Yet the film was a completely washout.
    I also feel that despite all her bubbly charm, Mumtaz was an over rated actress. She should have done more of “Khilonas” but she did more of balder dash like ” Apradh”. Her pout and the same expression in so many films makes one feel sorry for the audiences of the 70’s.
    During those days, heroines were chosen by actors and not based on script or director’s inutition. Isn’t this sad? Till today this happens.
    Shammi Kapoor did not like Kalpana and so her career eclipsed out. Kamal Hasan and Rati could not get along and so the audience lost a chance to see them again. Raj Kapoor and Nargis were one more such pair.
    What dissuaded Rajesh Khanna from promoting the beautiful Anju Mahendru in one of his movies? There are no answers. Actresses like Nazneen, Alka, Kumud Chugani & Faryal forever remained in the shadows till their exit from Bollywood. Sarika, Bhavna Bhatt and Neeta Mehta were good actresses but there were no heroes to promote them. Rishi Kapoor acted with the maximum number of heroines in their first films. But he had a predilection towards Neetu, Tina Munim and Padmini Kolhapure.

  38. Good movie. Brilliant performance by Balraj sahab.

  39. Do Raaste was the first golden jubilee hit for kaka. The film was a rousing success due to an interesting storyline, talented star cast, neat direction & excellent music. Kaka was called a manipulator but in many of his films, you can see that he has allowed his costars to share equal screen space with him.

    In fact, he was one of yhe very few heroes who despite being superstar, appeared in many heroine oriented films – aradhana, choti babu, amar prem , safar, kati patang, daag etc.,

  40. I was in my High school when the film was released. It was a big hit and the songs were super hits, prticularly ‘Bindiya chamkegi’, my personl favourite was ‘ Yeh Reshmi zulfen’ .

    Unless one witnessed the phenomenon called ‘Rajesh Khanna’, one cannot understand its impact. With one sweep all the veterns who ruled roost had to more or less retire. I, for one, never witnessed such phenomenon again.

  41. Junior mehmood singing song . , Rashid Khan with Indira Bhansal, ;Johnny Walker with SAROJ khan, Mukri, (no idea who is female with him) n an in song of Do Raaste 1969.

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