Posts tagged ‘Naushad’

September 25, 2010

Amar (1954)

This is my least favorite of the Mehboob Khan films I’ve seen, and it is such a pity. It boasts a fine cast with excellent acting, absolutely gorgeous music, stunning cinematography, detailed sets and costumes. The visuals, the ambiance and the characterizations all convey a wild Romanticism, but the plot collapses into an unholy mess halfway through. The pivotal event around which it revolves is completely incongruous with the characters we have come to know (not to mention that I have a serious quarrel with some of the resulting fallout). It feels like Mehboob didn’t show up at all to work on the second half; it’s as if he realized that he was confused about what he was trying to say, knew he had screwed it up, didn’t have the energy to care, and finally just gave up.

read more »

Advertisements
March 4, 2009

Mere Mehboob (1963)

mere_mehboob

This is one of the most romantic films I’ve ever seen, with absolutely sublime music by Naushad. It’s a Muslim social drama set in Lucknow, with all the attendant grace and beauty you would expect. Elaborate sets and costumes are de rigueur! Love blooms for Sadhana and Rajendra Kumar, and there is also a lovely romance between the so handsome Ashok Kumar and pretty Nimmi. Obstacles and misunderstandings abound, seasoned with (mostly) funny-man Johnny Walker’s antics, and made compelling by the people and relationships you can’t help but root for—this is my favorite kind of movie. Even the fairly poor condition of the color print only adds to the old-fashioned and elegant ambiance of it all.

read more »

January 6, 2009

Dulari (1949)

dulari_mirror

Most Hindi films from the 1940s are pretty melodramatic. Not only is the acting theatrical and stagey, but the dialogues are overwrought and repetitive (so that you don’t miss the point, I guess) and there are 10-15 songs sprinkled throughout at the rate of one every ten minutes (or so it seems). Characters are self-sacrificing and martyred, or unreasonably demanding; and there’s often some sort of love triangle ending with at least one person’s death (usually Dilip Kumar’s character). All this┬ácan make the movie heavy going, but at least the plots tend to be fairly straightforward and easy to follow. And if you know what to expect they always have something fun to offer (like Hindi films in every decade!).

read more »

May 4, 2008

Deedar (1951)

I was so f*ing happy to see these words. An alternate title could be When Bad Things Happen To Good People. The denouement has Dilip Kumar stabbing his own eyes out. And up until then it’s nothing but misery, suffering and pain.

I will say that it is a well-crafted film, with superb performances—especially by Dilip Kumar and Ashok Kumar. But for a girl who already worries too much about eight dollar cups of coffee and what the world is coming to it’s unredeemably depressing.

read more »

April 30, 2008

Trivia time #19

Can anyone tell me who the female singer in this song from the film Chandni Raat is? She sang in a handful of films in the late 1940’s, before becoming much better known as an actress in the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s (she stopped singing).

read more »