Monday, October 9, 2017

Manzil 1960

I like Dev Anand for his smile and his unique persona. He brings that boyishness to the screen without much effort. And Manzil isn't untouched by it.

A young boy who has returned to his hometown in Shimla from vilayat is demanded by his rich dad to continue the family business. But the dreamy Raj( Dev Anand) is interested in music. The only one who understands him is Pushpa (Nutan). This leads to constant tiffs with his father and ultimately he goes away to Bombay.

He slowly finds success with helpful friends like Mehmood and a prostitute who tries to make advances on him. Pushpa misunderstands him and takes decisions that significantly decides the fate of the two.

I felt the first half was too slow with unnecessary romantic scenes and the only saving grace are the songs. S.D Burman once again weaves magic with his lovely melodies. Director Mandi Burman has brought a lot of lightness to an otherwise heavy,sad and tension filled story.

Watch it for the ever boyish and endearing  performance of Dev Anand and some great acting by Mehmood too.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Mere Mehboob 1963

If you love shaayari and old Hindi cinema, then you will appreciate Mere Mehboob, the 1963 blockbuster movie. With such giants of the golden era of Bollywood,Rajendra Kumar and Sadhna, this beautiful lyrical movie will capture every nostalgic fancy.

Dripping in poetry, beautiful costumes and the old Lucknowi style of living, Mere Mehboob is a like watching a lovely scenery on your vacation. Inspite of this visual fancy the movie is not just a musical or a moving sonnet. With a strong script, some amazing performances and dependable supporting cast of Ashok Kumar and Johnie Walker, Mere Mehboob will not let you budge or look at your phone ,if I should speak for my generation.

Set in the famed Aligarh University romance blooms in a  innocent way between Anwar and Husna, Kumar and Sadhna respectively. The kind of romance which is veiled and shy. The popular song Mere Mehoob sets the tone for the movie. The story moves to Lucknow where Husna is shown as Nawab Akhtar's sister ,who is extremely proud of his lineage and khaandaan.

 Aligarh University

 This is the thing about old style movies especially set in Lucknow, where the nawabi grace and conduct is so neatly shown without being over the top and being obvious about it. The glamour is subtle and comely.

Nawab Akhtar is also secretly in love with Najma, Anwar's sister. Najma,who is a dancer is played by Nimmi. Though he isn't ashamed of being in love with her or rebukes her profession , he is conscious of the society and thinks it against his refinement to marry her and make her begum of his khaandaani makaan. And a beautiful one at that!

Without any overly emotional dialogues and the obvious shaayari, the movie glides beautifully through showing every character's role in this story of sacrifice, family bond, prestige and love.

 Anwar with his sister

The nazaakat between the lovers

Watch for the Lucknowi andaz,the charming Sadhna or just some classic brilliance.

Old time Lucknow

Director - H.S. Rawail
Music - Naushad