Sunday, July 19, 2015

False Dilemma Opinion Poll: Filmi Families

SIRF EK HI RAASTA!

Weigh in with your choice of two famous family members in the comments below! You cannot answer "Both! Ufff, dono!" because this poll is unfair. Also, my apologies if examining any of these pairs feels like that trip to the eye doctor where they flip through different lenses asking, "1 or 2, 2 or 3, 5 or 14" and you really have no opinion one way or the other (because they amount to the same thing).

1. Kishore Kumar  or ... Ashok Kumar?

My answer: Hai, what have I done? Probably Ashok Kumar because of his onscreen staying power and consistently excellent performances. I can't or won't count the playback brilliance factor because that's NOT a fair fight.

2. Supriya Pathak or ... Ratna Pathak? 

My answer: With that growly voice and sometimes-swagger, Supriya is more compelling to me at this point. But I wish I had known them both in the 80s c. Idhar Udhar.

3. Vinod Khanna or ... Akshaye Khanna?

My answer: Duh. VK ... I am thus-far allergic to his sons' performances.

4. Tanuja or ... Kajol? 

My answer: I've actually seen Tanuja in more films at this point, and she's a good performer and all ... but she never really wins me over and often projects a kind of emotional strain that isn't pleasant to watch. Kajol can also be grating on screen, but I still like her in spite of it. So I suppose it's Kajol.

5. Vijay Anand or ... Shekhar Kapur? 

My answer. Better to ask, Mr. India or Blackmail? Based on the films I've seen so far, well, Shekhar wins by a one point lead (one can't forget Masoom, even if those Elizabeth movies were dull as paint and I haven't been able to stomach Bandit Queen in full). But if I see a few more early Vijay films I might feel differently.

6. Salim Khan or ... Salman Khan?

My answer: Salim of Salim-Javed over Salman bhaiya any day. [I will probably make a rare trip to see a Hindi film in the theatre for Bajrangi Bhaijaan, however.]

7. Salim Khan or ... Helen? 

My answer: [crosses self] Helen-ji, please forgive the question, we know not what we do.

8. Dharmendra or ... Hema Malini?

My answer: Aren't they one person now? Like some superimposed super-being? No? Then, hmm, Dharmendra by a very narrow margin (that should by rights not be able to accommodate a Deol thigh).

9. Sonakshi Sinha or ... Shatrughan Sinha?

My answer: I liked Sonakshi in Lootera (before I promptly forgot about the film), but I'm extremely fond of ol' Shotgun, not least because I'm amused that whenever I show my family a movie with him, my mother inevitably goes "Who's that?" and starts rooting for his nonsense rather than the hero's.

10. Sharmila Tagore ... or Saif Ali Khan? 

My answer: Saif Ali who? Where are my Sharmila movies? I need them to remain in my sight at all times and I'm concerned that I do not yet own a copy of Nayak (despite an attempt to purchase and receiving an Anil Kapoor movie for my pains)... especially given the fickleness of YouTube and the general slowness of Criterion to release a remastered edition along with all the other popular 60s Ray films.

And a bonus question: 

11. Yash Chopra or ... B.R. Chopra? 

My answer: Can I bend my own rule and say YC in the 70s and BRC in the 80s? No? Well, then I choose Ittefaq (it is my blog header after all) and thereby choose both.

There's no end to the rishta and khandaans (or even the Khans) of Bollywood, so I'll cap this here.

9 comments:

  1. 1. Ashok Kumar, hands down.
    2. I can't have both? Then, Ratna Pathak Shah.
    3. VK, VK, and more VK - he has more charisma than both his sons put together.
    4. Tanuja - I can't stand Kajol.
    5. Vijay Anand! What a question. Though Shekhar Kapoor is dishy! (But you weren't asking to choose as 'men', no?)
    6. Bhai! :)
    7. Helen!
    8. Dharam - pre his khoon pee jaaoonga days.
    9. Shotgun - his laadli is beginning to get on my nerves.
    10. Sharmila! Though Chhote Nawab has his plus points.
    11. BR and early Yash - before the latter discovered Switzerland and mustard fields.

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    1. I think we should be able to have both Pathak sisters. It's too hard to choose and I shouldn't have even tried. I don't know if I would ever choose an Anand on the "man" scale vs. the director/producer scale. I suppose it would depend who I was choosing between.

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  2. I can't resist a poll, so here goes...

    1. Kishore Kumar or ... Ashok Kumar?

    As actors? Ashok.

    2. Supriya Pathak or ... Ratna Pathak?

    My ignorance of 80s Indian cinema prevents me from voting on this one.

    3. Vinod Khanna or ... Akshaye Khanna?

    No contest. Akshaye is charming (as in Aaja Nachle), but Vinod has greater range and way more screen charisma.

    4. Tanuja or ... Kajol?

    Tanuja is delightful in movies such as Jewel Thief and Baharen Phir Bhi Aayengi, but Kajol speaks directly to my emotions, even in less-than-great films.

    5. Vijay Anand or ... Shekhar Kapur?

    My vote is Vijay; see Tere Mere Sapne.

    6. Salim Khan or ... Salman Khan?

    Seeta aur Geeta, Zanjeer, Sholay, Deewar, Don, and Mr. India, vs. Hum Aapke Hain Koun...! and Salaam-e-Ishq? Salim.

    7. Salim Khan or ... Helen?

    But I would trade Salim's entire filmography for Helen's without a second thought.

    8. Dharmendra or ... Hema Malini?

    Perhaps the answer to this one depends on one's gender, but no contest: I'm voting for the young Hema, the mid-career Hema, and the late-career Hema.

    9. Sonakshi Sinha or ... Shatrughan Sinha?

    Sonakshi gets my vote for her unapologetic curviness and classic face. Again, perhaps my gender has distorted my perceptions.

    10. Sharmila Tagore ... or Saif Ali Khan?

    Saif appears in my favorite (and first) Indian film, in what is (in my humble opinion) his best performance and role (as Rojit). But Sharmila is an icon; with apologies to other heroines too numerous to name, the 60s and early 70s in Indian cinema are almost unimaginable without her.

    11. Yash Chopra or ... B.R. Chopra?

    While I'm as susceptible to Yash's wide-screen emotionality as the next person, and while tunes from his movies play in my head more often than I'd like to admit, I'm voting B.R. for Sadhna and Gumrah, which are moving because of their total identification with the plight of their heroines (and their gorgeous black-and-white photography).

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    1. Hema vs. Dharmendra was difficult ... but I ended up choosing the person with the most variety of roles and with the longer time span of time of films I like to watch. It's interesting about Kajol, I feel like I should dislike her, but I never quite do (as long as I stay away from interviews, which applies to a lot of stars). Yash past the 70s feels a bit soulless to me. I think he got too distracted with panoramas. And Sharmila isn't the best actress of her age group, I suppose, but like you said, one tends to think of her immediately, and she did so many really excellent films that I love. Saif I just can't take seriously, but perhaps that's my problem.

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  3. 1. Ashok Kumar (forever !)
    2. Supriya Pathak of yore, the present Ratna ... OK OK, I pick Ratna :)
    3. VK without question
    4. Um, tough one there.... but Tanuja, except in that film with Rajesh Khanna (where he sings O mere dil ke chain). Love her in Jewel thief ! And in that movie with Dharmendra, Do chor ?
    5. Vijay Anand of course. Have you seen his Tere ghar ke saamne and his Gora Kagaz :)
    6. Salim Khan (somehow salman khan has never appealed to me)
    7.Helen
    8. Ummmmmm..... ok Dharmendra.
    9. Sonakshi (I think she has great potential. If only she'd .. do something more than Prabhu Deva films)
    10. Sharmila [Saif was fun in some of the Dil Chahta hai type roles but ... ]
    11. As directors (?) ..I think BRC's Pati Patni aur woh and Hrishikesh Mukhurjee's delightful Rang Birangi parody has prejudiced me against him :| So Yash Chopra be it. Also early Yash Chopra is delightful. Waqt !

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    1. Ahhhhhh, the Pathaks. I shouldn't have tried to choose. I like them both immensely. I actually dislike Tanuja the least in her pairings with Rajesh Khanna, esp. Mere Jeevan Saathi with O Mere Dil Ke Chain. They both have Mannerisms, capital M, and it's sort of fun to watch the show. Ha! There's no accounting for taste. I haven't seen enough Vijay to really fairly judge, partially because I'm not in love with Dev Anand films yet. Ahh, come on Sonakshi! Waqt is good, but is slow for me in the way a lot of popular 60s films have ended up being.

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  4. Love your reviews but commenting for the first time - absolutely had to get my votes in!
    1. Ashok Kumar - no contest
    2. Ratna Pathak - just wins over Supriya for comic timing
    3. Vinod Khanna - hands down, with white bell bottoms on top
    4. Tanuja - find her more charming
    5. Vijay Anand - more of a fan of the oldies
    6. Salim Khan - fabulous dialogues
    7. Helen - shouldn't even be a question!
    8. Dharmendra - extremely under-rated
    9. Shatrughan Sinha - much better actor
    10. Sharmila - esp. when paired with Dharmendra!
    11. Yash Chopra - esp. of the 60s-70s

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    1. Hello Anon :) Great to hear from you.
      I think you are right about Ratna winning on the comedic timing front. Vinod's white bellbottoms, well, you read this site so you already know what I think about those ;)
      I don't think Kajol could be accused of being charming, so that's a good point. I think Dharmendra is underrated because he overstayed his second best years and didn't shift roles accordingly. But he was pretty great up until the mid 80s, and that's about a 25 year run (not bad, not bad). Shatrughan Sinha is a pretty good actor when given anything to chew on ... I enjoy him immensely. You're a Sharmila/Dharmendra fan? Interesting choice. I assume you've seen Yakeen? Do you have any other favorite movies with their pairing? I've had Mere Humdum Mere Dost on my list for a while.

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  5. Hi Miranda,

    On Sharmila - Dharmendra - I have seen most of their work together including Yakeen :) More of my favourites include Devar, Anupama, Satyakam, Chupke-Chupke, and even Mere Humdum Mere Dost with its inverted "girl chases boy" dynamic

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