Sunday, November 17, 2013

That Milestone Post . . .

It's been a wonderful year (OK, 10 + months) of filminess since I was first infected by Bollywood. I've found such a perfect home in Hindi movies, that some days I can't believe my good fortune. It's a huge part of my every day life and thoughts: Hindi music and language between them have commandeered at least 50% of my brain, and an embarrassing percentage of my free time.

My eyes are still glued to the screen at least as much as Shashi's are to this stage. (Sharmilee, 1971.)


























Just today, I finished watching a Shashi and Sharmila film from 1967, Aamne Samne. It was an above average thriller, but the personal occasion it marked somewhat upstaged its inherent charms.

Aamne Samne was my 100th Hindi film. And let me tell you, I'm happier than Zeenat's thighs in a thunderstorm about right now.

P.S. If you see Shashi, Zeenat, and Rakhee films taking over the s-caps of this short post . . . it's because they were my first real loves in Hindi cinema, and I think they deserve a bit of the credit for me sticking around. (Ajanabee, 1974.) 



























Sure, there's a whole lot more to see and experience and learn. 100 films isn't that much in the scope of things (although, 100 hardly includes the multitude of bits and pieces of films I've seen, and doesn't count other non-Hindi Indian language films), and I'm still an innocent wandering in the wood in terms of understanding Hindi cinema, I'm sure.

Points for guessing this film :)























However, no logical caveat is going to keep me from celebrating this occasion.

I have a goddess-given right to get all dressed up and go to the party.  Which goddess? Why, Zeenat of course!



























This week, I'm going to try to step it up and document some of my big picture reflections about the films I've seen so far . . . probably via a series of posts.  But today, I mostly just want to bask.

Hey, if Rakhee takes time to enjoy the afterglow, so should I . . .






























Here's to the next 100 Hindi films!


     (Aamne Samne, 1967)
Shukriya, Bollywood!

4 comments:

  1. Congratulations on the milestone! 100 films in less than a year is an awesome record. Are we going to be treated to many more reviews from these 100 films you have seen! I guess that still is Zeenat Aman in Satam Shivam Sundaram. Amne Samne had good songs.

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  2. Thank you, I do feel simultaneously proud (and a little embarrassed) at the sheer amount of movies I've consumed this year. I want to start writing up more of my thoughts--and hopefully you will see a lot of new stuff here this week.

    Aamne Samne really needs restoration work, I got the feeling it would have felt like a much better film if the print on the DVD had been better. I felt like I was being robbed of some very pretty sets (maybe even one of the locations from Waqt) and shots. The songs were pretty good---especially during the location picturizations in Kashmir. BTW, Zeenat in SSS was correct. I feel like even the silhouettes in that film are unforgettable.

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  3. Yay I got that right. BTW, SSS was a big flop when it released. A lot of non indian fans of Indian cinema seem to like the movie - most Indians detest it. I managed to get a copy on my last holiday in India mainly to satisfy my curiosity - what is so good about this movie that bloggers are so impressed about? I haven't seen it yet as other movies are enticing me at the moment.

    My copy of Amne Samne was also bad - totally agree - we have been cheated of some good locales due to poor picture quality. While i enjoyed the songs, I didn't find the movie very interesting.

    Please do write more reviews from the pile of 100 you have seen so far!

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  4. I actually would say I've gathered the opposite opinion from the blogs I read--most bloggers seem to be aware of SSS's bad reputation, and tone down their own thought in accordance with that. I think the PPCC (if I remember right) wrote very intelligently about the film's strengths and weaknesses from an outsider's perspective.

    I wouldn't want to step on any toes myself, but I do think the reaction of non-indians versus current watchers is merely a matter of the time and space that have passed since SSS's release. I can totally see why it would have been seen as bad/scandalous at the time. But now, looking through contemporary eyes (without a cultural/growing up memory of the film), I think the film is objectively pretty tame.

    Personally, I can't be completely objective about the film. It was my first ever Hindi movie from the 70's, and I have to credit it with getting me interested in the era (amazingly enough, considering it's atypical nature). Likewise, it was my first Shashi film, and really the first thing I watched pre-90's. That said, the film has some amazing visuals, and if read like the myth/fairy tale it was meant to be, I think it says some important (even feminist) things. Also, it's got one of my favorite climax scenes of any Hindi film. Someday I might review it, but it seems to create such immediate controversy . . . and I'd have to be in the right mood to deal with that.

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