January 27, 2009

Dil Aur Mohabbat

This could have been a great noir movie, if only Vijay Anand would have directed it. In the hands of Anand Dutta (who never made another movie), it was a bit of a mess.

Title: Dil Aur Mohabbat
Year: 1968
Cast: Joy Mukherjee, Sharmila Tagore, Nasir Hussein, Ashok Kumar, KN Singh, Bela Bose, Johnny Walker

The movie opens well, with Ashok Kumar, a policeman, coming home to his ailing wife, Asha Nadkarni and his young son- Sachin (looking really really adorable!)

After quickly establishing Ashok's honesty, and his son's early tendencies towards the opposite, Asha quickly dies. The son grows up at school in Bombay, with the strange habit of sleeping with his own picture by his bed :S

Joy also likes to visit gambling houses, where he gambles (heeh), smokes (!),

... and likes to play snooker (why are all the balls the same color? doesn't it matter? I thought they should be different- will a snooker guru please enlighten us?) against the backdrop of surreal-ly painted walls and a grooving Bela Bose.

But Joy also goes to school: he studies at what reads like "APC College" of Mathematics, which is fake- there are APCs in Calcutta and the South though. His classmates are quite a bunch: An aging Johnny Walker who dresses like the early Beatles, and Anoop Kumar.

But Sharmila makes up for these deficiencies when she rides into college on a lambretta, wearing a gorgeous yellow confection!

And of course Joy disguises himself (as he has done so often before) to cadge a ride.

And after the usual bickering, of course they fall in love,

but for once the heroine coyly, but very stylishly announces her romance to her father, Nasir Hussein.

On her Birthday she has a truly fugly cake,

but takes the opportunity to give a ring to Joy symbolizing their engagement. Now this is very odd- isn't the guy supposed to give the ring? But looking at the size of her pearl ring (which I COVET), she perhaps doesn't need one...

Now that the ring is on, Joy decides to mend his gambling ways. But not before 1 last game of cards on a heart/kidney-shaped table.

The guy he is playing with dies when a scuffle ensues, and gasp- he happens to be the club owner, KN Singh's brother!

Urged on by Bela, Joy runs for his life,

... but only after he meets up with Sharmila and convinces her of his innocence.

So that when his dad comes to Bombay and realises his son is wanted for murder (look at the magazines- apparently Manohar Kahaniyan, Screen and Maya still existed then!),

... then Sharmila can meet him and bond with her future father-in-law :)

Of course Bela must assist Ashok in establishing Joy's innocence as well.

... But will KN really let Joy go so easily? What other nefarious plans does he have for Joy? ( I am convinced Joy wore that same pink-striped shirt in "Phir Wohi Dil Laaya Hoon")

Will Joy ever reconcile with his dad? Will he ever meet Sharmila again? Will Sharmila wear her pearl ring to the end? Will KN Singh keep on using lightbulbs that match Joy's shirts?
What will happen?
To find out, watch the travesty that is "Dil aur Mohabbat."

1- Sharmila is luminous. As is Joy- and they looked really great together. I don't know if they did other movies together, but please let me know if you have recommendations.
2- I wish we had more of KN Singh in there- he just wasn't around enough.
3- Bela Bose has so many songs! She isn't bad looking, but not in the Helen/Faryal category, who I tend to enjoy more. The songs themselves are not bad- nothing that blew me away, but serviceable.
4- Repeating what I said in the beginning: the story had the makings of an excellent noir film. But it is treated as a romance, and therefore fails to deliver all that it could. If only they had roped in Vijay, or Brij, this could have been a way better movie.


Anonymous said...

There was so much pretty to go round but somehow the movie didnt amount to much. The romance was boring and the thrills non-exisetent. Sharmila-Joy's other movie (Humsaya which also starred Mala Sinha) was awesome and way more of a romantic-thriller. The songs were also great. You should definitely check it out.

ajnabi said...

You mean you *don't* sleep with a picture of yourself next to your pillow? You must be the only one then.

I think I want that fugly cake for my next b-day.

NidaMarie said...

I love how the cake didn't make it past you without a comment/screenshot...

Sharmila always wears everything so well, doesn't she?

How is Joy related to Rani and Kajol? I see some resemblance, or is it just in my head?

Shweta Mehrotra Gahlawat said...

Bollyviewer: "Humsaya" is the good word then- they do look nice, and I look forward to watching them again- thanks!

Ajnabi: I think I'll go 1 step further and put a giant size pic of myself on the bedroom wall, like Sallu in most of his earlier movies :D

Nida: Love Shamila- esp when she is mod :D Joy and Kajol's dad Shomu are real brothers. They are both 1st cousins to Rani's dad, Ram. See also: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mukherjee-Samarth_family_(film)#Mukherjee_family_tree
My hubby insists I need to put together a huge Bolly family tree- one day...

Information Junkie said...

I have special fondness for Bollywood movies with Marine Drive Art Deco style buildings. I wish someone could compile these Marine Drive shots over the years to show how it has changed.

Nicki said...

I don't think I've ever seen a movie with Joy. Sharmila is just plain gorgeous. Thanks for the screencaps and write-up!

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Shweta Mehrotra Gahlawat said...

Information Junkie: That would indeed be fun to see- I agree!

Nicki: Anytime- I love joy :D

Ray: Thank you for you interest.

Anonymous said...

You're thinking of pool... he's playing snooker which is technically a member of the billiards family same as pool but is almost entirely different when played. Fun trivia: it originated in India as an off shoot of what is now called English billiards.

I likey the snooker.

Shweta Mehrotra Gahlawat said...

An answer to my confusion at last! Thank you Amrita :)