Directed by Yash Chopra
The second movie I saw Rishi Kapoor in, after Bobby, was Amar, Akbar, Anthony, and it was one of those rare surprises when you realize an actor wasn’t just being himself in his first movie. Rishi was in fine, ridiculous form, hamming it up with the rest of the best of them (and hamming it up is not as easy as it looks, to be successful). This was the third movie I saw him in, and again, he showed his talent is from his father, not his uncle (thank goodness). Even though he again is fighting to win a girl separated from him due to family issues, he is not the moon-faced, poetry-writing sweetie of Bobby. The story begins with Rishi’s mother when she was a college girl in love with someone whom she couldn’t marry. I won’t give away all the plot twists, but this unfulfilled love plays a part in the movie later, not making as much of a dent as it should. Instead, it seems more like something to give the adults to talk about. I know it’s meant to be an equal story, and it’s a great idea of a story, but it just doesn’t hold the weight it should in the actual film. The real story, to me, is attempting to be with Pinky, yet the filmmakers don’t seem to realize it. She is left to work out most of her issues alone, with Rishi occasionally coming along and barking at her for having the issues. Although it covers a time span that I like in Bollywood movies (more than one generation), again, I don’t feel like the story really rests enough with each of the smaller pieces. Too bad, since the movie is chock-full of stars, most of whom can certainly do a lot of heavy lifting—Rishi, Amitabh, and Waheeda.
Song Highlights: Nothing stood out to me, unfortunately—and I was so hoping it would. I had read much about how there are two different genres of love songs—the “classic” style for the older couple, and a “rock and roll” style for the younger couple. It is very apparent from this description that “rock and roll” was much different in Bollywood than in America, and I don’t know why I thought it wouldn’t be, after all I had already seen and read. The song that is most interesting is when the girl has to get married to someone she doesn’t love, and she sings a song to him after their wedding. He is very into enjoying her for the first time, and she is locked in her own internal agony.
Tidbits: Again, the Kapoors make for a beguiling spectacle, as Rishi Kapoor’s uncle, Sashi, plays his father (and he actually looks more like Rishi than Raj does, although they all look alike). I don’t know what has happened to Rishi since then; I saw him in Deewana and he had none of the talent he showed as a young man.
Rating: There are several inaccessible characteristics of this movie. The scene changes are more abrupt, and one scene clearly should have been placed a couple decades earlier than it was. Rishi Kapoor “gets up” on a horse by having his body moved up the screen and over, to end standing on the horse’s back. One scene includes lots of flashes between images of faces—this is often used when there is surprise or intensity from several characters who are focused on one other character. It’s jarring. Finally, Sashi Kapoor’s acting can’t help but ruin a little of every movie he is in. The man was gorgeous (at least to me), but he is not a good actor. He is either overacting, such as when he is acting “jovial” or angry, or his face is making expression choices that it is obvious he is thinking through while they are happening. Sashi was the first Bollywood actor to disappoint me. Up until then, I had thought them all remarkably natural, with many of their acting choices more pleasing than the studied “dramatic” acting of the American school.
Library Collection: This isn’t necessary to include unless your patrons request it or you have a historical scope purpose and you are able to collect many films.