Sunday, November 29, 2009

(Published on

Kurbaan which released in theatres on Friday is a thought provoking and a powerful movie which has hit theatres in the year 2009. With this movie, Karan Johar provides the thoughtful and intense Indian cine goers paisa vasool entertainment. In a way, this film is as fresh as a wind that easily blows the old thoughts away and it tells us that Karan Johar has an eye for history. The Indian audiences asked for a change and honestly speaking, this film was a honest and a better one. It looks as if Rensil Desilva, the director of the Kurbaan is more like a scientist to whom every drop of titration matters, as every minute of the film is hard hitting and succeeds in gripping the audiences thoroughly. We don’t have to look very far but only as far as early 2009, with Kurbaan its three hits in a row for Karan Johar as a producer (Dostana, Wake Up Sid and now Kurbaan) and he is set for more with My name is Khan to be released in early 2010. Karan succeeds to raise the Dharma Productions banner flying high. The film is based on the backdrop of terrorism. It taps specifically the life in the United States of India after 9/11 and clearly succeeds in doing that.

Kareena Kapoor plays Avantika in the film, a university teacher and falls in love with another professor from the same university, Ahsaan Khan (Saif Ali Khan). They marry and shift to New York in the United States. They buy a house next to a Muslim family and move in. The Muslim family invites them for a dinner together and that’s when things start changing for Avantika. One of the women of the Muslim family Salma (Nauheed Cyrusi) tells Avantika that her life is in danger and she needs help. What happens later on in the film is simply unpredictable and unthinkable. Avantika digs deep and realizes that unknowingly she has been a part of a huge conspiracy. She secretly gets help from news reporter Riyaaz (Vivek Oberoi) and plans to foil the terror plan.

Rensil is a delicate and poignant story teller and brings in all his 18 years experience of writing in this film. He succeeds in superbly catching the chemistry of a couple who are actually in love with each other. Secondly, he also succeeds in catching the psyche of people who think and feel deeply for their religion and how they think they ought to fight for it. Above all, he has superbly captured the mindset of people who actually go through the entire ordeal. The climax of the film is simply unthinkable.

Saif Ali Khan has succeeded in showing how wonderfully versatile he is, whereas Kareena (looks like million bucks) is exhilarating and shows why she is a top notch actor and amongst the best today. Vivek Oberoi whose career was more uncertain than even a stock broker, comes back on his own after a long lull. Kurbaan is a ray of optimism for him and could really be a defining film of his career. Om Puri is a unique actor who has a unique ability to communicate very well with the audiences. Kiron Kher too comes out of her usual self of a boisterous Punjabi mother and settles well with the Afghani accent. The music by Salim Suleiman needs a special mention as he succeeds in enthralling the audience with two wonderful songs “Shukran Allah” and “Ali Maula”. Overall the film is a sensitive one and succeeds in meeting the fundamental expectations of the audiences which is - a return for money.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

SD Burman - The musical legend
(Published on - 04Nov2009)

Sachin Dev Burman or SD Burman or SD or just Sachinda was a legendary personality. He was an elegance personified and the finest music directors of all time. “Sachinda was one of the most cultured and sophisticated music directors I have ever encountered” Dev Anand once said. Sachin Tendulkar the great Indian cricket player was named after Sachin dev Burman.

Sachinda belonged to an aristocratic pedigree. He was born in a princely family of Tripura. Money never impressed him; nothing seemed bigger than music for the great SD Burman. He was also a brilliant and skilful classical singer, singing enhanced his passion for music; it helped him in creating some unforgettable and soulful music. He started his musical career in films from Kolkata. He has sung for more than 200 songs (filmy and non filmy) in Hindi and Bengali. In his hey days as a music composer, he used to phone call singers like Mukesh and Mohammad Rafi in the early morning hours to test their vocal cords.

In Sachinda’s erstwhile years, he always wanted to live in Kolkata but was destined to come to Mumbai. He moved to Mumbai and composed music for two films Shikari and Aath Din. He was never able to adjust in Mumbai and was annoyed by its materialistic nature. Soon he decided it was enough and decided
to move back to Kolkata. He was working on Ashok Kumar starrer Mashaal at that point in time. Ashok Kumar was very close to Sachinda and he requested him to continue but all his pleas were futile and meaningless. Finally, Dada Moni requested him to complete the music of that film before leaving. The music of Mashaal was a hit. Sachinda thus decided to stay back.

Dev Anand, a man with a keen ear for music appointed Sachinda as the music director of his own venture Navketan Films after the success of his film Baazi which had a song with an inescapable magic Tadbir se Bigdi hui Taqdeer Bana de. Later on, Sachinda composed music for another film of Navketan banner which was Afsar, the music of which was also a big hit. His camaraderie with Dev Anand was due to Sachinda’s uncompromising commitment towards perfection. With Navketan, he composed music for hit films like Tere Ghar Ke Saamne and Jewel Thief. In 1965 Dev Anand released Guide for which Sachinda weaved his magic once again. With Hum Bekhudi mein tumko, he worked wonders. The other super hit songs from Guide were Gaata rahe mera dil, Aaj phir jeene ki tamanna hai and Wahan Kaun Hai Tera which was sung by Sachinda himself.

Before his partnership with Dev Saab, he had a nice little partnership with Guru Dutt and wrote music for his famous movies like Pyaasa and Kaagaz ke Phool. He also wrote music for Kishore Kumar film Chalti Ka Naam Gaadi which was a huge hit. With his musical composition Jalte Hain Jiske Liye sung by Talat Mahmood, he simply stole the nation’s soul.

In 1979, he came up with incredible tunes for a film titled Aradhana which was a runaway hit and which was a life line for play back singer Kishore Kumar and superstardom for Rajesh Khanna. The music of Aradhana provided unbridled exhilarations to fans. Sachinda in spite of being a master never believed he was invincible. He therefore consciously tried to forget his own creations so that he doesn’t repeat himself in the next one. This quality of Sachinda distinguished him from the rest. This quality is no longer found in the current music directors, who are always ready to steal their competitor’s tunes.

October 1st was Sachinda’s birthday and October 31st is his death anniversary but there is timelessness about the great man. He passed away but immortalised himself in the heart of his lovers. He is and will always be remembered the Legendary Music Director, who gave a different dimension to the Music Industry!!