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    Over a year ago, my husband remarked, “You’ve done special weeks on Robert Mitchum and Tyrone Power. You’re also going to be doing one on Johnny Walker. But what about your favourite actor? Don’t you think you should be doing a Shammi Kapoor Week sometime?” Of course, I said. I just wanted to time it [...]

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    Shammi Kapoor in Dil Deke DekhoShammi Kapoor in Dil Deke Dekho

    Shammi Kapoor in Dil Deke DekhoShammi Kapoor in Dil Deke Dekho

    Shammi Kapoor in Dil Deke DekhoShammi Kapoor in Dil Deke Dekho

    Shammi Kapoor in JungleeShammi Kapoor in Junglee

    Shammi Kapoor in JungleeShammi Kapoor in Junglee

    Shammi Kapoor in ProfessorShammi Kapoor in Professor

    Shammi Kapoor in Kashmir ki KaliShammi Kapoor in Kashmir ki Kali

    Shammi Kapoor in BoyfriendShammi Kapoor in Boyfriend

    Shammi Kapoor in SingaporeShammi Kapoor in Singapore

    Shammi Kapoor in Vallah Kya Baat HaiShammi Kapoor in Vallah Kya Baat Hai

    Shammi Kapoor in MujrimShammi Kapoor in Mujrim

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  • 10/21/11--21:32: Dil Deke Dekho (1959)
  • Dil Deke Dekho isn’t quite the perfect film I’d like to make it out to be. (a) The story isn’t exactly original (Nasir Hussain had already used it in Tumsa Nahin Dekha. He also went on to use it in Jab Pyaar Kisi se Hota Hai and Phir Wohi Dil Laaya Hoon, but that can’t [...]

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    Shammi Kapoor in Dil Deke DekhoShammi Kapoor in Dil Deke Dekho

    Shammi Kapoor and Asha Parekh in Dil Deke DekhoShammi Kapoor and Asha Parekh in Dil Deke Dekho

    Harichand tells Nagina his planHarichand tells Nagina his plan

    A corpse is found - with a letterA corpse is found - with a letter

    Jamuna Devi and Rana Raghubir receive a shockJamuna Devi and Rana Raghubir receive a shock

    Rana Raghubir believes Harichand's allegations and leaves JamunaRana Raghubir believes Harichand's allegations and leaves Jamuna

    Jamuna ticks Kailash offJamuna ticks Kailash off

    Neeta comes home to her fatherNeeta comes home to her father

    Roop/Raja makes plans to have his father's eyes operated uponRoop/Raja makes plans to have his father's eyes operated upon

    Roop loses his job thanks to NeetaRoop loses his job thanks to Neeta

    Tom tells Roop about a job offer in RanikhetTom tells Roop about a job offer in Ranikhet

    Roop shows his ad for 'Professor Saamri'Roop shows his ad for 'Professor Saamri'

    Kailash meets Professor Saamri...Kailash meets Professor Saamri...

    ... and so does Neeta... and so does Neeta

    Neeta meets an attractive strangerNeeta meets an attractive stranger

    Jagat babu tells Jamuna Devi about his seeing her husbandJagat babu tells Jamuna Devi about his seeing her husband

    Harichand sees Rana Raghubir, and tells Sohan...Harichand sees Rana Raghubir, and tells Sohan...

    ... and Sohan goes off to meet Rana Raghubir... and Sohan goes off to meet Rana Raghubir

    Some snooping and some plottingSome snooping and some plotting

    Shammi Kapoor in Dil Deke DekhoShammi Kapoor in Dil Deke Dekho

    Asha Parekh in Dil Deke DekhoAsha Parekh in Dil Deke Dekho

    Edwina Lyons (in the centre) in Dil Deke DekhoEdwina Lyons (in the centre) in Dil Deke Dekho

    Asha Parekh in a really weird outfit...Asha Parekh in a really weird outfit...

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  • 10/22/11--20:39: Kashmir ki Kali (1964)
  • This particular Shammi Kapoor film has a very special place in my heart – because Yeh chaand sa roshan chehra was one of the first Hindi film songs I ever learnt to sing. I must’ve been about eight years old. I’d never seen the film; television was yet to make its way into our lives [...]

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    Shammi Kapoor in Kashmir ki KaliShammi Kapoor in Kashmir ki Kali

    Shammi Kapoor with Sharmila Tagore in Kashmir ki KaliShammi Kapoor with Sharmila Tagore in Kashmir ki Kali

    Raju makes an announcementRaju makes an announcement

    Shyamlal, Raju's mother and Karuna discuss his futureShyamlal, Raju's mother and Karuna discuss his future

    ... and Raju is forced to resort to theatrics to escape matrimony... and Raju is forced to resort to theatrics to escape matrimony

    Chander makes a suggestionChander makes a suggestion

    Raju asks at an inn for a roomRaju asks at an inn for a room

    Champa throws a bucket of water down on the fire - and RajuChampa throws a bucket of water down on the fire - and Raju

    Raju tells Champa he isn't a wealthy manRaju tells Champa he isn't a wealthy man

    Mohan warns Raju off ChampaMohan warns Raju off Champa

    A crazy meeting between the unwitting 'landlord' and his tenantsA crazy meeting between the unwitting 'landlord' and his tenants

    Chander finds himself pursuedChander finds himself pursued

    Love blossoms (literally)Love blossoms (literally)

    Some happy songs, and loads of romance...Some happy songs, and loads of romance...

    Champa with her blind father, DinuChampa with her blind father, Dinu

    Mohan blackmails DinuMohan blackmails Dinu

    Together - but how much longer?Together - but how much longer?

    Shammi Kapoor and Sharmila Tagore in Kashmir ki KaliShammi Kapoor and Sharmila Tagore in Kashmir ki Kali

    Amul - Shammi Kapoor TributeAmul - Shammi Kapoor Tribute

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    It seems a bit of a paradox that Tumsa Nahin Dekha was both good and bad for Shammi Kapoor. Good, because it turned him from a wannabe to a big star. Bad, because it created a certain persona – the fun-loving, completely madcap yet good at heart rebel. Bad? Was that ‘bad’? I think so. [...]

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    Shammi KapoorShammi Kapoor

    Shammi Kapoor in Professor, as Professor Khanna...Shammi Kapoor in Professor, as Professor Khanna...

    ... and as Pritam... and as Pritam

    Shammi Kapoor in and as BrahmachariShammi Kapoor in and as Brahmachari

    Shammi Kapoor as Shekhar in JungleeShammi Kapoor as Shekhar in Junglee

    Shammi Kapoor as Mike and Shekhar in China TownShammi Kapoor as Mike and Shekhar in China Town

    Shammi Kapoor as Anil (aka Rocky) in Teesri ManzilShammi Kapoor as Anil (aka Rocky) in Teesri Manzil

    Shammi Kapoor as Ravi in AndaazShammi Kapoor as Ravi in Andaaz

    Shammi Kapoor as Shankar in Tumsa Nahin DekhaShammi Kapoor as Shankar in Tumsa Nahin Dekha

    Shammi Kapoor as Roop/Raja in Dil Deke DekhoShammi Kapoor as Roop/Raja in Dil Deke Dekho

    Shammi Kapoor as Bhanu Pratap Singh in RajkumarShammi Kapoor as Bhanu Pratap Singh in Rajkumar

    Shammi Kapoor as Shankar in MujrimShammi Kapoor as Shankar in Mujrim

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  • 10/24/11--22:01: Junglee (1961)
  • For a lot of people of my generation – or those younger than me, who have seen Shammi Kapoor in his earlier films, this is the film that is probably representative of Shammi Kapoor: the ‘Yahoo! Kapoor’ as a friend of mine says with a sneer. Junglee is one of the major successes of Shammi [...]

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    Shammi Kapoor and Saira Banu in JungleeShammi Kapoor and Saira Banu in Junglee

    A loving reunionA loving reunion

    Shekhar yells at Rita and the managerShekhar yells at Rita and the manager

    Mala and Jeevan indulge in some romancingMala and Jeevan indulge in some romancing

    ... and the prince of Aamgarh comes calling... and the prince of Aamgarh comes calling

    in Aamgarh, the creditors line up demanding their moneyin Aamgarh, the creditors line up demanding their money

    ... and the princess admires her new necklace... and the princess admires her new necklace

    Mala's fate is decidedMala's fate is decided

    Shekhar meets Raj in KashmirShekhar meets Raj in Kashmir

    ... and Mala discovers an awful truth... and Mala discovers an awful truth

    Raj takes over Mala's disordered lifeRaj takes over Mala's disordered life

    ... and begins by bullying Shekhar... and begins by bullying Shekhar

    A very fake sadhuA very fake sadhu

    Shekhar is duped into going to SheshnagShekhar is duped into going to Sheshnag

    Caught in a blizzardCaught in a blizzard

    Shekhar sees Raj asleep in the morningShekhar sees Raj asleep in the morning

    ... and the air crackles with tension... and the air crackles with tension

    Chaahe koi mujhe junglee kahe...Chaahe koi mujhe junglee kahe...

    Raj and Shekhar part before he leaves for BombayRaj and Shekhar part before he leaves for Bombay

    Shekhar's mother receives a surprise in the form of a changed sonShekhar's mother receives a surprise in the form of a changed son

    The royalty of Aamgarh decide to overlook Shekhar's apparent lunacyThe royalty of Aamgarh decide to overlook Shekhar's apparent lunacy

    Saira Banu and Shammi Kapoor in JungleeSaira Banu and Shammi Kapoor in Junglee

    Shammi Kapoor in JungleeShammi Kapoor in Junglee

    Saira Banu with Shammi Kapoor in her debut song, Kashmir ki kali hoon mainSaira Banu with Shammi Kapoor in her debut song, Kashmir ki kali hoon main

    Helen in Suku sukuHelen in Suku suku

    A song from Artists and ModelsA song from Artists and Models

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  • 10/25/11--21:31: Professor (1962)
  • The first time I watched this film was on TV, back in the mid-80s. Luckily enough, our TV was hooked up to a VCR, and a blank tape was in the VCR – so we recorded Professor. I loved the film so much, I rewatched that tape again and again over the next 15 years. [...]

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    Shammi Kapoor and Kalpana in ProfessorShammi Kapoor and Kalpana in Professor

    Pritam hears some bad newsPritam hears some bad news

    Pritam and his motherPritam and his mother

    The doctor gives Pritam some more news, also badThe doctor gives Pritam some more news, also bad

    Seeta Devi interrogates Professor KhannaSeeta Devi interrogates Professor Khanna

    ... and orders him to teach her nieces Sanskrit... and orders him to teach her nieces Sanskrit

    Neena and Rita conspireNeena and Rita conspire

    A wife...A wife...

    ... and an enraged husband, springing on the Professor... and an enraged husband, springing on the Professor

    Seeta Devi overhears Neena and RitaSeeta Devi overhears Neena and Rita

    A glimpse of life under Seeta DeviA glimpse of life under Seeta Devi

    Neena promises to make the Professor weepNeena promises to make the Professor weep

    ... and meets a stranger... and meets a stranger

    A little harassment...A little harassment...

    ... and a big dose of seduction!... and a big dose of seduction!

    Rita meets Ramesh, and is soon in loveRita meets Ramesh, and is soon in love

    Seeta Devi...Seeta Devi...

    ... is transformed by romance... is transformed by romance

    Neena meets a familiar figure in BombayNeena meets a familiar figure in Bombay

    Shammi Kapoor as PritamShammi Kapoor as Pritam

    Shammi Kapoor as 'Professor Khanna'Shammi Kapoor as 'Professor Khanna'

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    My sister keeps a stack of CDs in her car. Often, when she gives me a lift, she puts a CD into the stereo and we listen as she drives along. The CDs are a mixed lot: Harry Belafonte, Simon and Garfunkel, 3 Idiots, Wake up, Sid!, The Best of S D Burman… and The [...]

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    Shammi Kapoor in Dil Deke DekhoShammi Kapoor in Dil Deke Dekho

    Hum aur tum aur yeh samaa, from Dil Deke DekhoHum aur tum aur yeh samaa, from Dil Deke Dekho

    Ae gulbadan ae gulbadan, from ProfessorAe gulbadan ae gulbadan, from Professor

    Is rang badalti duniya mein, from RajkumarIs rang badalti duniya mein, from Rajkumar

    Akele-akele kahaan jaa rahe ho, from An Evening in ParisAkele-akele kahaan jaa rahe ho, from An Evening in Paris

    Ehsaan tera hoga mujhpar, from JungleeEhsaan tera hoga mujhpar, from Junglee

    Ae dil ab kahin le jaa, from BluffmasterAe dil ab kahin le jaa, from Bluffmaster

    Tumne mujhe dekha, from Teesri ManzilTumne mujhe dekha, from Teesri Manzil

    Hai duniya usi ki, zamaana usi ka, from Kashmir ki KaliHai duniya usi ki, zamaana usi ka, from Kashmir ki Kali

    Yoon toh humne laakh haseen dekhe hain, from Tumsa Nahin DekhaYoon toh humne laakh haseen dekhe hain, from Tumsa Nahin Dekha

    Dheere chal, dheere chal ae bheegi hawa, from BoyfriendDheere chal, dheere chal ae bheegi hawa, from Boyfriend

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  • 11/03/11--01:58: Tengoku to Jigoku (1963)
  • This blog’s been focussing on Hindi cinema for a while now, so I decided it was time to get back to being a bit more diverse. And this time with a film from one director whose work I admire a lot: Akira Kurosawa. If all you’ve seen of Kurosawa are his samurai films, I’d recommend [...]

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    Yutaka Sada, Toshirô Mifune and Kyôko Kagawa in Tengoku to JigokuYutaka Sada, Toshirô Mifune and Kyôko Kagawa in Tengoku to Jigoku

    Gondo...Gondo...

    ... and the other directors of National Shoes, with Kawanishi... and the other directors of National Shoes, with Kawanishi

    Gondo evicts his colleagues from his homeGondo evicts his colleagues from his home

    Jun and his playmate, ShinichiJun and his playmate, Shinichi

    Gondo receives a phone call from OsakaGondo receives a phone call from Osaka

    Gondo reveals his game planGondo reveals his game plan

    A devastating phone callA devastating phone call

    Jun returns, unexpectedlyJun returns, unexpectedly

    Gondo rushes to phone the police about Shinichi's abductionGondo rushes to phone the police about Shinichi's abduction

    The police arrive - and the kidnapper phones, againThe police arrive - and the kidnapper phones, again

    An unreasonable requestAn unreasonable request

    Aoki breaks down and pleads with GondoAoki breaks down and pleads with Gondo

    Reiko and Gondo discuss their futureReiko and Gondo discuss their future

    The kidnapper gives some instructions...The kidnapper gives some instructions...

    Gondo gives the ransom by throwing the bags of money out of the trainGondo gives the ransom by throwing the bags of money out of the train

    The police decide to go after the kidnapperThe police decide to go after the kidnapper

    Vinod Khanna, Shreeram Lagoo, etc in InkaarVinod Khanna, Shreeram Lagoo, etc in Inkaar

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    This blog hosted a ‘Classic Bollywood Quiz’ a while back. In true film awards style (and we have pacifist to thank for this idea), everybody who submitted answers got a prize. The winner, Anoushka, got a tangible prize, and our runner-up, Anu Warrier, got the ‘dictate-a-list’ prize. For the others, I decided I’d dedicate one [...]

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    Some lesser-known music directors of Hindi cinemaSome lesser-known music directors of Hindi cinema

    Mujhko tum jo mile, from Detective - composed by Mukul RoyMujhko tum jo mile, from Detective - composed by Mukul Roy

    Aayega aanewaala, from Mahal - composed by Khemchand PrakashAayega aanewaala, from Mahal - composed by Khemchand Prakash

    Saranga teri yaad mein, from Saranga - composed by Sardar MalikSaranga teri yaad mein, from Saranga - composed by Sardar Malik

    Dhalti jaaye raat, from Razia Sultana - composed by LachhiramDhalti jaaye raat, from Razia Sultana - composed by Lachhiram

    Aa tu aa zara dil mein aa, from Phoolon ki sej - composed by Adi Narayan Rao PAa tu aa zara dil mein aa, from Phoolon ki sej - composed by Adi Narayan Rao P

    Dil thhaam chale hum, from Love in Simla - composed by Iqbal QureshiDil thhaam chale hum, from Love in Simla - composed by Iqbal Qureshi

    Ae watan ae watan, from Shaheed - composed by Prem DhawanAe watan ae watan, from Shaheed - composed by Prem Dhawan

    Sambhal ae dil, from Sadhana - composed by N DuttaSambhal ae dil, from Sadhana - composed by N Dutta

    Saiyaaan pyaara hai apna milan, from Do Behnen - composed by Vasant DesaiSaiyaaan pyaara hai apna milan, from Do Behnen - composed by Vasant Desai

    Mohabbat zinda rehti hai, from Changez Khan - composed by Hansraj BahlMohabbat zinda rehti hai, from Changez Khan - composed by Hansraj Bahl

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  • 11/15/11--04:44: Midnight Lace (1960)
  • “Racy stuff, eh?” said my husband, when I told him the name of the film I was going to review next. No. Not at all. In fact, Midnight Lace has nothing steamy about it except a rather stylish black top that Doris Day wears in the climactic scene. A couple of weeks ago, I’d read [...]

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    Doris Day in Midnight LaceDoris Day in Midnight Lace

    Kit loses her way in the fog...Kit loses her way in the fog...

    ... and has a very scary experience... and has a very scary experience

    Tony, with the board of Preston'sTony, with the board of Preston's

    Peggy, the Prestons' neighbourPeggy, the Prestons' neighbour

    Malcolm borrows money from his mumMalcolm borrows money from his mum

    Tony assures Kit that her experience was the result of a prankTony assures Kit that her experience was the result of a prank

    A man in a black coat appears to be trailing Kit...A man in a black coat appears to be trailing Kit...

    Younger saves Kit from certain death and helps her upYounger saves Kit from certain death and helps her up

    Kit receives a telegram - and a phone callKit receives a telegram - and a phone call

    Tony and Kit go to Scotland YardTony and Kit go to Scotland Yard

    Kit listens to some voice samples...Kit listens to some voice samples...

    ... while Inspector Byrnes has a chat with Tony... while Inspector Byrnes has a chat with Tony

    Bea arrives in LondonBea arrives in London

    Inspector Byrnes hears another complaint from KitInspector Byrnes hears another complaint from Kit

    Bea discusses Kit with TonyBea discusses Kit with Tony

    Younger rescues Kit once againYounger rescues Kit once again

    An indication of some mysterious phone callsAn indication of some mysterious phone calls

    Malcolm tries to prise money out of KitMalcolm tries to prise money out of Kit

    An employee apprises Tony of a massive embezzlementAn employee apprises Tony of a massive embezzlement

    A stranger comes callingA stranger comes calling

    Doris Day in Midnight LaceDoris Day in Midnight Lace

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  • 11/22/11--01:18: Insaan Jaag Utha (1959)
  • The main reason I rented this film was that the credits were so absolutely mouthwatering. A cast that included Sunil Dutt, Madhubala, Minoo Mumtaz, Madan Puri and Nishi Kohli. Music by S D Burman. Shakti Samanta as director. A winner, I’d have thought. Alas, no. While it’s not a dud, Insaan Jaag Utha isn’t more [...]

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    Sunil Dutt and Madhubala in Insaan Jaag UthaSunil Dutt and Madhubala in Insaan Jaag Utha

    Ranjit hides the briefcaseRanjit hides the briefcase

    ... and ends up in jail... and ends up in jail

    The construction site of the Nagarjuna Sagar DamThe construction site of the Nagarjuna Sagar Dam

    Ranjit meets LaxmandasRanjit meets Laxmandas

    ... and is shooed away by Gauri... and is shooed away by Gauri

    Mohan's henchman reports to himMohan's henchman reports to him

    Chandar and Bahadur meet RanjitChandar and Bahadur meet Ranjit

    Ranjit goes looking for workRanjit goes looking for work

    The comical overseer at the construction siteThe comical overseer at the construction site

    ... and the engineer, Mr Mathur... and the engineer, Mr Mathur

    Ranjit gets to know Gauri a bit betterRanjit gets to know Gauri a bit better

    Gauri's friend Munia, and Munia's suitor SukhamGauri's friend Munia, and Munia's suitor Sukham

    Hansa dances into the storyHansa dances into the story

    Ranjit gets accommodation at the 'hotel'Ranjit gets accommodation at the 'hotel'

    Ranjit discovers Robert's photos among Hansa's belongingsRanjit discovers Robert's photos among Hansa's belongings

    Ranjit has a chat with Hansa/RineeRanjit has a chat with Hansa/Rinee

    Ranjit talks to GauriRanjit talks to Gauri

    The past: Sudha begs Ranjit to elope with herThe past: Sudha begs Ranjit to elope with her

    Robert agrees to help Ranjit - in return for a favourRobert agrees to help Ranjit - in return for a favour

    Ranjit overhears a conversationRanjit overhears a conversation

    Madhubala in Insaan Jaag UthaMadhubala in Insaan Jaag Utha

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  • 11/27/11--21:51: High Noon (1952)
  • I was – at least as far as emotional maturity is concerned – a baby when I first saw High Noon, and I didn’t care for it much then. Not that I wasn’t fond of Westerns; I adored Westerns. In book form, in cinema, in song. For me, the genre was all that was gloriously [...]

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    Gary Cooper in High NoonGary Cooper in High Noon

    Three dangerous men arrive at Hadleyville's train stopThree dangerous men arrive at Hadleyville's train stop

    The man at the train stop gets a disturbing telegramThe man at the train stop gets a disturbing telegram

    Will Kane and Amy get marriedWill Kane and Amy get married

    Some cheery chatter after the weddingSome cheery chatter after the wedding

    The man from the train stop arrives with a telegramThe man from the train stop arrives with a telegram

    Frank Miller's men await his arrivalFrank Miller's men await his arrival

    Kane and Amy leave townKane and Amy leave town

    Kane returns to town with AmyKane returns to town with Amy

    Amy tries to reason with her husbandAmy tries to reason with her husband

    Judge Mettrick prepares to leave HadleyvilleJudge Mettrick prepares to leave Hadleyville

    ... as does Helen Ramirez... as does Helen Ramirez

    Will Kane sets out to find helpWill Kane sets out to find help

    At the local saloonAt the local saloon

    Kane talks to HarvKane talks to Harv

    Harv resigns as deputyHarv resigns as deputy

    Sam Fuller tells his wife to tell a lieSam Fuller tells his wife to tell a lie

    Howe refuses to help KaneHowe refuses to help Kane

    At the churchAt the church

    The tracks stretch towards the horizonThe tracks stretch towards the horizon

    The clock ticks toward noonThe clock ticks toward noon

    The train that nearly killed Zinnemann and the cameramanThe train that nearly killed Zinnemann and the cameraman

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    (And a very brief tribute to Dev Anand, 1923-2011). This is the second of my ‘prize posts’ for the Classic Bollywood Quiz. The first of these posts was dedicated to Karthik, who’d once suggested I do a list of lesser-known composers. This post is dedicated to Anoushka Dave, our overall winner. Anoushka, whose prize included [...]

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    Suraiya and Noorjehan as sahelis, in Anmol GhadiSuraiya and Noorjehan as sahelis, in Anmol Ghadi

    Main chali main chali from PadosanMain chali main chali from Padosan

    Banke panchhi gaaye pyaar ka taraana, from AnariBanke panchhi gaaye pyaar ka taraana, from Anari

    Aruna Irani in Gaon ki main gori, from HumjoliAruna Irani in Gaon ki main gori, from Humjoli

    Leena Chandavarkar in Gaon ki main gori, from HumjoliLeena Chandavarkar in Gaon ki main gori, from Humjoli

    Ae kaale baadal bol, from DahejAe kaale baadal bol, from Dahej

    Tum jiyo hazaaron saal, from SujataTum jiyo hazaaron saal, from Sujata

    Gori sasuraal chali, from ShagoonGori sasuraal chali, from Shagoon

    Jaanoon jaanoon re, from Insaan Jaag UthaJaanoon jaanoon re, from Insaan Jaag Utha

    Mere mehboob mein kya nahin, from Mere MehboobMere mehboob mein kya nahin, from Mere Mehboob

    Baat-baat mein rootho na, from SeemaBaat-baat mein rootho na, from Seema

    Hum panchhi mastaane, from Dekh Kabira RoyaHum panchhi mastaane, from Dekh Kabira Roya

    Dekhne mein bhola hai, from Bombai ka BabuDekhne mein bhola hai, from Bombai ka Babu

    Dev Anand in Dekhne mein bhola hai, from Bombai ka BabuDev Anand in Dekhne mein bhola hai, from Bombai ka Babu

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  • 12/07/11--03:55: Dev Anand in Ten Moods
  • As teenagers, my friends and I were unanimous about one thing: there was no beating Shammi Kapoor and Dev Anand as the most watchable stars. Not that they were then in their prime; this was in the very late 80s, but as far as my pals and I were concerned, Hindi film heroes stopped being [...]

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    Dev AnandDev Anand

    O nigaah-e-mastaana, from Paying GuestO nigaah-e-mastaana, from Paying Guest

    Achhaji main haari, from Kaala PaaniAchhaji main haari, from Kaala Paani

    Kabhi khud pe, kabhi haalaat pe, from Hum DonoKabhi khud pe, kabhi haalaat pe, from Hum Dono

    Din dhal jaaye, from GuideDin dhal jaaye, from Guide

    Hain sabse madhur woh geet, from PatitaHain sabse madhur woh geet, from Patita

    Kali ke roop mein, from Nau Do GyarahKali ke roop mein, from Nau Do Gyarah

    Arre yaar meri tum bhi ho gazab, from Teen DeviyaanArre yaar meri tum bhi ho gazab, from Teen Deviyaan

    Yeh raat yeh chaandni phir kahaan, from JaalYeh raat yeh chaandni phir kahaan, from Jaal

    Gori zara hans de tu, from Asli NaqliGori zara hans de tu, from Asli Naqli

    Naacho ghoom-ghoom ke, from SarhadNaacho ghoom-ghoom ke, from Sarhad

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  • 12/15/11--23:24: Paths of Glory (1957)
  • We’ve been on a spate of tributes all this month. First, it was a farewell for Dev Anand, the man who embodied ‘leading man’ for so many Indians across generations. Then, there were birthdays – for the ‘hunkiest of them all’, Dharmendra, and then for one of Hindi cinema’s greatest thespians, Dilip Kumar. Somewhere amidst [...]

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    Kirk Douglas in Paths of GloryKirk Douglas in Paths of Glory

    Broulard meets MireauBroulard meets Mireau

    Mireau expresses doubts about the mission to take the Ant HillMireau expresses doubts about the mission to take the Ant Hill

    Mireau briefs DaxMireau briefs Dax

    The Ant HillThe Ant Hill

    Mireau brushes aside all of Dax's objectionsMireau brushes aside all of Dax's objections

    Mireau 'observes' the assault from the comfort of his own postMireau 'observes' the assault from the comfort of his own post

    The captain of a nearby battery gets an odd message from Mireau...The captain of a nearby battery gets an odd message from Mireau...

    ... and a phone call from the General... and a phone call from the General

    The assault on Ant HillThe assault on Ant Hill

    Mireau decides to wreak vengeanceMireau decides to wreak vengeance

    Dax pushes to be counsel for the defenceDax pushes to be counsel for the defence

    Paris finds himself condemned because he knows an ugly secret...Paris finds himself condemned because he knows an ugly secret...

    ...and Ferole because he's a 'social disgrace'...and Ferole because he's a 'social disgrace'

    Dax talks to the three menDax talks to the three men

    The court martialThe court martial

    The three condemned menThe three condemned men

    General Mireau goes on a 'morale-boosting' walkGeneral Mireau goes on a 'morale-boosting' walk

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    A few days back, an editor from The Indian Express phoned to ask me if I’d like to review a book for them. Which book? Sidharth Bhatia’s Cinema Modern: The Navketan Story. Too mouthwatering an opportunity to miss, I decided, even though I already had a lot of work to get done. But here it [...]

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    Sidharth Bhatia's Cinema Modern: The Navketan StorySidharth Bhatia's Cinema Modern: The Navketan Story

    Dev Anand in Kaala PaaniDev Anand in Kaala Paani

    A still from Taxi DriverA still from Taxi Driver

    Noel Corke and his mother in Taxi DriverNoel Corke and his mother in Taxi Driver

    A strong-willed heroine: Nalini Jaywant in Kaala Paani...A strong-willed heroine: Nalini Jaywant in Kaala Paani...

    Helen in Jewel ThiefHelen in Jewel Thief

    A still from Fritz Lang's Der Tiger von EschnapurA still from Fritz Lang's Der Tiger von Eschnapur

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  • 12/27/11--08:48: Taj Mahal (1963)
  • I ended up re-watching this film in a roundabout sort of way, which is a story in itself. A few months back, my sister (a historian, whose PhD was on 19th century Delhi) remarked, “I’d like to watch Lal Qila. I’ve never been able to find it in stores.” So, good little sister that I [...]

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    Pradeep Kumar and Bina Rai in Taj MahalPradeep Kumar and Bina Rai in Taj Mahal

    Prince Khurram arrives at Meena Bazaar, and is accosted by Laadli BanoPrince Khurram arrives at Meena Bazaar, and is accosted by Laadli Bano

    Khurram meets Arjumand BanoKhurram meets Arjumand Bano

    Gulbadan tells Khurram the identity of the beauty he metGulbadan tells Khurram the identity of the beauty he met

    Khurram sends Arjumand a carrier pigeonKhurram sends Arjumand a carrier pigeon

    Khurram and Arjumand fall in loveKhurram and Arjumand fall in love

    Jehangir talks with his wife and empress, NoorjehanJehangir talks with his wife and empress, Noorjehan

    Shahryar relaxes with his friendsShahryar relaxes with his friends

    Gulbadan carries tales to Laadli BanoGulbadan carries tales to Laadli Bano

    Noorjehan decides to take her daughter's future into her own handsNoorjehan decides to take her daughter's future into her own hands

    Noorjehan goes to meet her brother Asif Khan and his daughter, ArjumandNoorjehan goes to meet her brother Asif Khan and his daughter, Arjumand

    Arjumand finds her way barred by the guardsArjumand finds her way barred by the guards

    At the mushaira, Arjumand speaks upAt the mushaira, Arjumand speaks up

    Noorjehan conspires with ShahryarNoorjehan conspires with Shahryar

    Noorjehan suggests a general for the Deccan campaignNoorjehan suggests a general for the Deccan campaign

    Jehangir welcomes Khurram back with joy and prideJehangir welcomes Khurram back with joy and pride

    Arjumand tends to an injured Khurram in her father's taikhanaArjumand tends to an injured Khurram in her father's taikhana

    Jehangir frets on his sickbedJehangir frets on his sickbed

    Khurram arrives to meet JehangirKhurram arrives to meet Jehangir

    Veena as Noorjehan in Taj MahalVeena as Noorjehan in Taj Mahal

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  • 12/31/11--23:33: Don Camillo (1952)
  • I am not a party animal. I do not drink. I have two left feet. Loud music makes my head throb. I find it difficult to keep awake after 11 PM. So when friends ask, “What’re you doing on New Year’s Eve?” I say, “Watching a movie at home.” And what better way to say [...]

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    Fernandel as Don Camillo and Gino Cervi as Peppone in Don CamilloFernandel as Don Camillo and Gino Cervi as Peppone in Don Camillo

    Peppone and his party celebratePeppone and his party celebrate

    Don Camillo complains to the Crucified ChristDon Camillo complains to the Crucified Christ

    Don Camillo disrupts the communists' celebrationsDon Camillo disrupts the communists' celebrations

    A woman comes with a message for PepponeA woman comes with a message for Peppone

    The new Papa and his sonThe new Papa and his son

    Don Camillo celebrates the birth of Peppone's sonDon Camillo celebrates the birth of Peppone's son

    Signora Botazzi comes to have her son baptisedSignora Botazzi comes to have her son baptised

    The Crucified Christ admonishes Don CamilloThe Crucified Christ admonishes Don Camillo

    A bout of fisticuffsA bout of fisticuffs

    Baby Botazzi is baptisedBaby Botazzi is baptised

    A communist Mayor and a Catholic priestA communist Mayor and a Catholic priest

    The wall between the Abbruciata land and the Filotti landThe wall between the Abbruciata land and the Filotti land

    Gina and Mariolino meet after years...Gina and Mariolino meet after years...

    ... and fall in love... and fall in love

    Signora CristinaSignora Cristina

    The communists come for lessonsThe communists come for lessons

    ... and Signora Cristina tutors them... and Signora Cristina tutors them

    Honouring the crucifixHonouring the crucifix

    A socialist CatholicA socialist Catholic

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    Ever since I began this blog, I’ve maintained one annual tradition: on my birthday, I post a review of a film featuring a film personality who shares my birthday. I’ve reviewed Ittefaq (starring Nanda); Wild in the Country (starring Elvis Presley) and Baghdad ka Jaadoo (with Fearless Nadia). This time, it’s back to Baghdad – [...]

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    Kerwin Matthews with Torin Thatcher in The 7th Voyage of SinbadKerwin Matthews with Torin Thatcher in The 7th Voyage of Sinbad

    Sinbad's men sight shore - after he shows themSinbad's men sight shore - after he shows them

    Sinbad assures his fiancee, Parisa, and her maidSinbad assures his fiancee, Parisa, and her maid

    On the island...On the island...

    ... a horrid encounter... a horrid encounter

    Sokurah pulls out the magic lamp and rubs itSokurah pulls out the magic lamp and rubs it

    The genie of the lamp appearsThe genie of the lamp appears

    The lamp falls into the seaThe lamp falls into the sea

    Sokurah tries to plead with SinbadSokurah tries to plead with Sinbad

    ... and with the Caliph (and Sinbad again) in Baghdad... and with the Caliph (and Sinbad again) in Baghdad

    Sokurah shows off his skillSokurah shows off his skill

    The Caliph and the Sultan remain immune to Sokurah's magic and pleasThe Caliph and the Sultan remain immune to Sokurah's magic and pleas

    Poor Parisa gets shrunkPoor Parisa gets shrunk

    Another conferenceAnother conference

    Sinbad gets his ship a new crew - from the prisonsSinbad gets his ship a new crew - from the prisons

    Sinbad sets off for ColossaSinbad sets off for Colossa

    Harufa makes an unpleasant discoveryHarufa makes an unpleasant discovery

    A view of a lovely palaceA view of a lovely palace

    A frame from The 7th Voyage of Sinbad: a Cyclops battles a dragon...A frame from The 7th Voyage of Sinbad: a Cyclops battles a dragon...

    ... and Sinbad fights off a roc... and Sinbad fights off a roc

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  • 01/11/12--04:44: Maya (1961)
  • A wealthy young man strikes out on his own to see how the rest of the world lives. He pretends to be poor, goes to live in a community of poor people, and falls in love with a poor girl who doesn’t realise he’s a wealthy man. Starring Dev Anand as the protagonist. Asli-Naqli? No. [...]

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    Dev Anand and Mala Sinha in MayaDev Anand and Mala Sinha in Maya

    A party is hosted by Manmohan's servantA party is hosted by Manmohan's servant

    Deepak comes to wish Manmohan for his birthdayDeepak comes to wish Manmohan for his birthday

    An awful truth is revealed, leaving Manmohan feeling guiltyAn awful truth is revealed, leaving Manmohan feeling guilty

    Sheila tells the truth about her and ManmohanSheila tells the truth about her and Manmohan

    Manmohan catches a burglar, Sudesh...Manmohan catches a burglar, Sudesh...

    ... and makes him agree to a deal... and makes him agree to a deal

    Manmohan/Shyam finds a room in the chawlManmohan/Shyam finds a room in the chawl

    Banke and his ladyloveBanke and his ladylove

    Ranbir and SudeshRanbir and Sudesh

    Shyama finds a man whom she thinks is her brother, in bedShyama finds a man whom she thinks is her brother, in bed

    Shyama meets Shyam - dripping wet from her drenching of himShyama meets Shyam - dripping wet from her drenching of him

    Love is in the air: Tasveer teri dil meinLove is in the air: Tasveer teri dil mein

    Manmohan and his fatherManmohan and his father

    Tabassum in MayaTabassum in Maya

    Edwina Lyons in Maya (on the left)Edwina Lyons in Maya (on the left)

    Amjad Khan in a cameo in Maya - with his father, JayantAmjad Khan in a cameo in Maya - with his father, Jayant

    Mala Sinha in MayaMala Sinha in Maya

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