Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Dhund (1973) – murder in the mist

A murderous 'print? I had vague memories of watching this murder mystery years ago and enjoying it. But my memories hadnt prepared me for the dramatic fog (Dhund) of mystery that envelopes the film, or for all the stunningly beautiful people with homicidal tendencies that inhabit the fog-ridden world of this film!
Onward with the story… On a misty mountain road, a car meets with an accident and the driver, Shekhar (Navin Nischol), knocks on the door of the nearest house to get help. He finds the door unlocked and decides to walk in. Inside, he discovers the murdered master of the house - Ranjit Singh (Danny Denzongpa) - and the murderer holding the proverbial smoking gun. This is how good murder mysteries should begin. :-D When the camera moves to show the murderer, I’m not surprised that ‘he’ is a gorgeous woman – the script requires it! To make matters even more interesting, the gorgeous woman turns out to be none other than Ranjit Singh’s long-suffering wife Rani (Zeenat Aman).

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Bollywood, its payback time!

Work and Mr. Darcy have been keeping me busy for the past few days. Yes MR. DARCY, Elizabeth Bennet’s Mr Darcy. You wont believe the things he gets up to when he isnt silently mooning over or proposing to Elizabeth. He gets acquainted with women of dubious morals, consorts with spies, gets drunk, fences, and even boxes! You cant imagine how eventful his life is, and just how much of my time its taken to catch-up with it – not unless you’ve read Pamela Aidan’s Fitzwilliam Darcy, Gentleman series. I’ve just finished the last one in the series – These Three Remain – and cant wait to read the earlier two titles!
Back to filmi-fun - I have come across an interesting case of copyright violation that I’d like to share with you:
desi_hellboy_1

Thursday, April 16, 2009

A year of blogging – a journey down memory lane

Exactly one year ago, today, I published my first blog post. Yes, Old is Gold is a year old today! I think the occasion calls for a story - the story of a film-buff’s journey in the blogging world.
Once upon a time, long ago (just 18 months in calendar years but centuries in terms of experience), there lived a bollyviewer who was completely ignorant of blogs and blog-writing. Yes doston, I am talking about ME! While still in this world of ignorance, I decided to look for old movies online. My search for old Shashi Kapoor films kept turning up one blog so often that I gave in and read it. And stayed to read, and read, and read…
Yes, it was the excellent Beth Loves Bollywood, whose love of Bollywood is legendary and finds expression in very thoughtful, well-written and very, very enjoyable film critiques. I read Beth’s reviews and was hooked on reading blogs! When I wasnt cracking up at her playful musings, Beth made me think hard, with her insightful commentaries.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

My favorite piano-songs

In days of yore, rich people always had large parties in huge living rooms full of glitterati, sweeping staircases, shiny chandeliers and a Baby Grand Piano. In modern times though, rich people have fallen on hard times and standards have deteriorated beyond recognition. There are NO pianos in living rooms anymore - not even in that of Karan Johar’s rich NRI protagonists’ (well they do say that people forget their sanskriti (culture) when they live abroad!). So, for my piano fix, I need to revisit oldies from the 50s and 60s that were overflowing with people from the piano-owning (and playing) classes. Here are some of my favorites that have at least one character “playing” the piano throughout the song.



Thursday, April 9, 2009

Afsana (1966) - a tale of terrible twists and turns

Afsana DVD cover I was looking for Ashok Kumar’s earlier Afsana when I came across this one and his looming presence on the DVD-cover decided me. In retrospect, it wasnt a great choice. But, its a fast paced movie with some good moments and enough Dada Mani and Helen to paper over some of the cracks!
The story begins in a prison where prisoner number 16 (Ashok Kumar) is on his way to another jail on account of his tendency to jail-break. This time however, his escape is successful and he manages to run into a deep forest. Shekhar (Pradeep Kumar) – a rich landowner – is out hunting in the same forest, and accidently shoots no.16.