Milind’s Reflections:Dilip,Amitabh,SRK,Aamir,Salman in One!!

Hey guys,This is gonna be a long read.I wanted to write this for long but seems today I feel like writing it finally.Thanks to Sputnik,Baba for their support.Thanks to Shetty bhai for his flattering support.Thanks to Raj-ji for his great inputs from time to time.Thanks to Arise_Awake for his constant “critical” read of my articles.Thanks to Lambu for his comic dissections.Thanks to everyone who has ever read me and will read me.

I had earlier written a short piece “Rants about Acting” on NG that made it to the POTW.Paradoxically they banned me a week later citing reasons that I never could understand.But the point is not that.What I want to speak out here is something that we all keep quizzing “What is acting?” I had a detailed discussion with Satyam too in this regard today and I could appreciate few of his points too.I have had constant discussions with many friends of mine on the eternal question of an “act” that is considered worthy of being recognised and appreciated. Thus whatever I am writing is in a sense a summation of ideas that any man conceives through his life searching for the answer to a question that is confusing,perturbing and vague.

So let’s go! How do you feel when Bachchan dies in the arms of his mother in Deewar.Thematically it is a very important scene in the history of Indian cinema whereby salvation is achieved in the purpose of search for justice through illegal means.The “poetic” justice served in Deewar could have failed badly had not Bachchan endeavoured to layer his death with emotions that made you cry within.The script writers wrote a scene on paper.But when an actor transfers the same to celluloid,he can either make or break the scene.Bachchan made the scene immortal.He not only infused a sense of tragedy but also made it evident that “crime always creates an avenue for justice”. It is not the goal but the means which are important.Hence Deewar serves a treatise about the attempt of redemption, class-differences and exerts to emphasize the inevitable win of good over evil.All this thematic interpretation of Deewar were not solely fulfilled by the altercation between Rishi and Amitabh with the mother being the fulcrum..It needed beyond that.Each movie needs one damn good scene which takes it to another level. Bachchan dying at the end in the arms of mother justified the essence of the movie,the purpose for which Yash Chopra delivered it.Let you not forget the famous “lock and showdown in godown” scene of Deewar.Bachchan is unsurmountable within that confine.As soon as he steps out his past starts to confine him.In an attempt to revenge the past,he refuses the money thrown in by Daavar Saaheb.The implications of such scenes would never have been fulfilled,had not Bachchan’s arrogance reflected in his attitude and demeanor.That same pride eventually would cause his downfall.Bachchan thus encompassed much within the movie,thematically covered a great distance and justified scenes with his effective portrayal.There are a few important scenes in Deewar. The first being the scene where the tall buildings reflect in the “dark glasses” of Bachchan contrasting with his past where “poverty” reflected from his dried eyes.Second is Amitabh with Parveen Bobby in bed.That scene in itself stands as a testimony to the fact that Bachchan is lonely,very lonely and disintegrating from within.Amitabh not only brought depth to such scenes but also painted them with an absorbing loneliness.Ambition,Hunger,Greed,Love,Revenge,Responsibility all are reflected and at the end the “protagonist” loses out to his own infirmities. Amitabh’s acting was emphatic.That is the term I cater to most when I talk about acting.It should serve the purpose of a role.The reason for describing Deewar in many aspects was to show how Amitabh fitted beautifully in each of its narrative.That can qualify for a good piece on acting! Acting is highly subjective but if seen from the “eyes” of the theme associated with it and the previous examples about a similar role and checking for innovations,one might have ones own deduction.Also the context within which a movie is set in or a subject about which movie talks about is a best available prop for measuring the level of act done to justify it.This is an indirect comparison but the nearest one.

Lets shift our focus on an effervescent “tragic” death. Watch out for Dilip in Devdas or better Sehgal in Devdas.These two men make “death” a subject that they subsequently learn over the course of the movie and later embrace it with a losing dignity.Dignity is not lost in terms of perception but in terms of a man losing out on his love and failing to alcohol subsequently.The “weakness” in man is showed beautifully.Man may seen like a strong surface but the lacunae within are justified by the “alochol” dependence that seemingly acts as a substitute for an addiction which was “love” in the original place!Dilip loses himself to alcohol literally in the movie.The “word” Paaro coming out of his throat definitely seem searching for a caress from Paaro.Paaro is replaced by Chandramukhi as an illusion which later gets converted into alcohol.Dilip used alcohol not as a prop but as an innate essential weakness of a lost man and utilised it to a certain toned effect that brought out the tendency of a man to embrace pain as a stigma following a loss in life.Pain cannot be measured.So you have the face to express it.One needs to revisit the classic to see how Dilip moulds the whole film into a package selling the “bitter” truth of life and acts a reference point for possibly every tragic story that might have taken place ever in this world.Dilip comes out as a natural loser,it seems at places,But he was the biggest winner of them all at having masterfully crafted a role that effortlessly portrayed the angst,the repulsion,the irresistible desire,and the subsequent fall into oblivion. All moulded into one! I call that acting! Definitely Yes!

Acting can never be measured in terms of acceptance of a movie.It is more like Raja Hindustani was a big hit but you remember Aamir for a AAA which nearly bombed at the BO. Thus acting is what does justice to the written aspect of the character.Brando was quality in “On the Waterfront”.Thus I consider Aamir as average in Ghulaam as I had previously remarked–There is a definite precedence here.The reference point is too strong for the successor to uproot that.But even that average performance of Aamir is elevated to a level of brilliance because of the paucity of such intense performances in that era.Thus what again works is the comparison with other products in that era.I find Sarfarosh the most accomplished Aamir performance to-date.It is like a character that sees the world through a normal middle class eye and is a no-nonsensical man.The effort to overcome his physical standards to match the agility the character required by his sheer intensive and introverted effort is remarkable.I have always applauded Sarfarosh for its smooth screenplay that suited the character of Aamir.Infact Aamir takes upon himself to underplay the romantic stuff with just a smile or under-developed excitement to make his authoritarian aspect look bright.Middle class sensibilities reflect when he constantly refuses to take Bendre’s romantic signals,whereas he is getting it all the time.Later on his honesty is reflected again in the same underplayed manner.He plays to the communal sentiments by making a statement regards “kaum” and “mulk” till Mukesh Rishi sets the note right by replying him befittingly.There now you see Aamir accepting the fact without the ego being hurt.That is to be noted in that scene.He is not crestfallen at having been proven wrong.He infact understands that his middle class sensibility sometimes clouds his judgement.All this is not said.It reflects from his face.It is the most defining aspect of an actor to be able to say what is “unsaid” or to be able to say the “intended” Such small scenes speak about an actor sometimes.Scenes that one may miss.I ask many friends–Which scene you like in Sarfarosh.They quip– Aamir running on the road and a few pin upon the last scene.” I like the two aspects I talked here.Aamir in Sarfarosh reminded me of Brando at times,very silent,very soft but easily cutting through the substance at hand making a definite point. I call that a good act.Yes I do!

Many have a wrong notion that Romance is an easy stuff on screen.That it can be done by just dancing in Switzerland and having a chiffon saree on. I disagree strongly here. Routine romance is the hardest stuff to do.If that had been so naturally born,people like Suniel Shetty,Sunny Deol and Jacky Shroff along with Sanjay Dutt would have had mastered the art.But on the contrary it becomes very difficult to portray the most innate and basic feeling a man has on screen. The fact that we dismiss “love on screen” as fluffy i the sheer inability to accept that we all have been mushy and fluffy at one point or the other in life.The inability to witness our reflections of private moments seems unbearable at places and we dismiss romance as even a piece that can be acted out.But here is where Shahrukh excelled.I can easily name Swadaes,KHKN,MNIK,CDI and walk away less questioned.But somehow I feel his “Yes Boss” performance remains the best from the lot.Again middle class ambitions at stake.Desire to touch the skies and then the compromise offered between love and money.SRK brings a freshness to the potrayal.In many sense Yess Boss is the extrapolation of Raju Ban Gaya Gentleman. Here SRK very simply displays the compromises a middle class guy might have to make in order to save or make his world of dreams.The scene where Pancholi offers SRK his own office to buy him and the manner in which SRK responds later is a scene that beats many in his career. There is another scene where Juhi who is fed up of staging the marriage has an altercation with SRK.He feels so dejected and refused on the inside but takes it on to listen the humiliation on the outside.He is helpless but yet not showing signs of a nervous breakdown.He is fighting but more with himself but asking Juhi in a sense to chide him.His interactions with Juhi are more of a means to explore his own decisions,his ow infirmities.SRK never makes an earnest desire to brood over it all.He plays it as natural as it can be.Never over-emphasizing the expressions but always allowing the face to speak.The “mischief” in him along with the “pains” provide for a weird combination but even then it turns out to be a lovely treat.What else could a bigger justification of a natural effervescent and composite act!!

There is a scene in HAHK.Salman calls up Madhuri and Madhuri is handling Renuka’s child after her death.Salman starts singing “Mujhse Juda Hokar” and Madhuri listens.That 1 minute is sheer magic.Salman in that 1 minute encompasses the myriad emotions-namely-loss,happiness,responsibility,love,restraint,silence.That 1 minute forms the crux of a movie where he graduates from being an irresponsible guy to a mature and oriented one.Finer nuances and details make acting,I believe.That 1 minute is the most passionate sense of separation I have ever witnessed.The other is SRK denying to Kajol that he loves her in DDLJ and walking off on the station.Infact Salman in HAHK plays to the character neatly.There is no conscious effort to be emphatic.He acts like a guy next door,mischievous and over-expressive.What stands out in this effort is his display of a character that stands opposite to the more mature character of Madhuri.Let me make a comparison here. Tom Cruise in his early films always played a role where his romantic counterpart would be more mature than him.Be it Top Gun or Days of Thunder. Salman in the same manner effectively utilises Madhuri to mature and graduate and when he does he inevitably faces the last lesson that would complete his transformation.Salman is said to have been overshadowed.I strongly resent that.If Salman got overshadowed,every role in the world that requires a mature woman as fulcrum is overshadowed.And mind it,it would include likes of Tom Cruise,Russel Crowe and Dustin Hoffman.Would anyone dare call them overshadowed.The best part of such characterization is that the actor gets to traverse a wide range of personality level and ultimately crosses a threshold where he matures and becomes eligible to match the girl.In this process one must notice that it is actually the male counterpart who is making an effort to portray different shades in that journey from immature to mature and not the girl who already has a platform to execute her role.Thus HAHK remains a very memorabilia in terms of Salman Khan’s filmography.It might have been a Madhuri Show but it was more of a Salman’s journey that was portrayed and HAHK is basically a story that involves Salman as the fulcrum later on thus allwoing for completion of the story!

I have just made an effort to portray the “acts” of few major mainstream actors.I could have talked about Sahni,Naseer,Pankaj,Irrfan but the fact is that they never have to be bound to an image.When you are not bound,you have limitless potential.When you play to the gallery,you have an additional responsibility of maintaining the charm and also make yourself believable.Also I have seen few worse performances from them.Kapur in Dus was pathetic so was Irrfna in Hiss.That is why I respect mainstream actors much more than them as they uphold the herculean task to do same thing again and again and still find variances to give each a certainly different flavour.



  1. Author
    Milind 9 years ago

    Its rather long but I still havnt been able to round myself off! Pheww!

    • Baba Ji 9 years ago

      I prefer that precise response to satyam (on ss) than this unnecessarily stretched piece,it was to the point and almost nailed all of satyams arguments,This piece is more like going into satyams domain.mostly overreading of things and at times boring.

  2. John Galt 9 years ago

    This is not against your article, but why does one even need to know what is acting? Are you opening a school for training people who can JUST talk about acting.

    I am probably one of the biggest Amitabh and he has been able to make a connection with me as an audience at screen-viewer level and that is it.

    “Hence Deewar serves a treatise about the attempt of redemption, class-differences and exerts to emphasize the inevitable win of good over evil”

    “Second is Amitabh with Parveen Bobby in bed.That scene in itself stands as a testimony to the fact that Bachchan is lonely,very lonely and disintegrating from within.Amitabh not only brought depth to such scenes but also painted them with an absorbing loneliness.Ambition,Hunger,Greed,Love,Revenge,Responsibility all are reflected and at the end the “protagonist” loses out to his own infirmities”

    Do you think the directors think of interpretation cultural influences when they make a movie like deewar. Come on, Man, move beyond the David Lynch syndrome and face the reality- A movie like Deewar or Sholay is not seeking your inner intellectual to look for assumed significances. I don’t believe even an actor like Amitabh was thinking of portraying “Ambition,Hunger,Greed,Love,Revenge,Responsibility ” on screen.

    “There is a scene in HAHK.Salman calls up Madhuri and Madhuri is handling Renuka’s child after her death.Salman starts singing “Mujhse Juda Hokar” and Madhuri listens.That 1 minute is sheer magic.Salman in that 1 minute encompasses the myriad emotions-namely-loss,happiness,responsibility,love,restraint,silence.That 1 minute forms the crux of a movie where he graduates from being an irresponsible guy to a mature and oriented one.Finer nuances and details make acting,I believe.That 1 minute is the most passionate sense of separation I have ever witnessed.The other is SRK denying to Kajol that he loves her in DDLJ and walking off on the station.”

    Again the same thing. Can;t you see its sheer melodrama and a portrayal of emotions in which a normal guy would never react. Its as superficial as they come.
    You want to see portrayal of separation in the earnest possible way- Go watch the climax of Gaman.(Amol Palekar).

    • Baba Ji 9 years ago

      john galt – good practical and non-fanatic views.i agree.

    • Tulmul 9 years ago

      Plus Minus here and there, Well Summation, John 🙂

      • fearlesssoul 9 years ago

        Tulmul – plus minus here and there results to negative, then how come well summation? 😉

        John – Bang on points

    • sputnik 9 years ago

      I agree with you that is there too much analysis and over interpretation regarding movies and scenes to the extent that the director/actors may not even have thought of. That is why I like the director’s interviews and that’s why I liked the Zoya Interview on LBC.

      Deewar is inspired from Mother India and Ganga Jamuna and is basically a city based version of those movies. Now Javed Akhtar is literary and he may have thought of some larger contexts but Salim according to me was the one who provided the thrilling moments and that is why they were such a unbeatable team. Deewar to me was just about good vs evil than any redemption or class differences.

      And that scene with Parveen Babi was not about loneliness but that Amitabh did not follow the society’s conventions. It was also about how Parveeen was modern in the way that she was so nonchalant about it.

      Its been a long time since I have seen HAHK but I still think the melodrama was quite subtle. It was a utopia – all happy people and all and there is that scene of the dog and the whole religion stuff to cater to the masses – but apart from that it was still subtle. Just imagine it could have been worse with melodrama – loud wailing, hyper dialogues and so on.

  3. sputnik 9 years ago

    To me acting is all about how convincing you are in emotional scenes – whether you bring out the angst or the underlying emotion behind your character in the given situation. Anyone who dresses up in a cop uniform will look like a cop but there’s nothing great about it. Amitabh was excellent in Zanjeer because he brought out the angst within – the anger against the injustice in the silences and in scenes of emotional outburst.

    Deewar was certainly Amitabh’s best. I have not seen Dilip in Devdas.

    I liked Yes Boss for the most part and SRK was very natural till the climax. But the scene where he gets angry at Juhi because she came late (Karva Chauth scene) just ruined it for me. SRK started going over hyper which had no place in the movie.

    I like SRK in the first half of DDLJ but not much in the second half. The second half of DDLJ has SRK giving these “gyaan” to Kajol or Farida Jalal and there is a lot of “acting” involved. He is not natural.

    Aamir was very good in Sarfarosh no doubt but I think most of the praise is due to Aamir convincingly pulling off a cop for the first time. I think Lagaan is Aamir’s best performance. I would pick Sanjay in Vaastav (which released the same year) over Aamir in Sarfarosh as an example of brilliant acting. Sanjay literally lived that role.

    And as far as HAHK is concerned I disagree with you on Salman completely. Salman’s role was the male equivalent of a female showpiece in other movies and even if HAHK had Dino Moreo in that role it would have not mattered. I am not saying HAHK is a women oriented movie ala Mrityudand or anything but he is not instrumental in anything. Now compare that to DDLJ and Raj’s character is the driving force. Mohnish Behl has a more instrumental role in the movie. And as far as acting is concerned watch the scene where Salman is sitting or lying behind on the sofa when Mohnish Behl & others are deciding some new business stuff (if I remember correctly) – watch the expressions on Salman’s face – he is trying to be innocent and coy and you will realize that he just can’t pull off that scene and how bad he is.

    I don’t agree with this whole underplaying thing – it is just an excuse given by some non actors and their fans. There is only right way to portray a scene according to the character and the given situation.

    • Tulmul 9 years ago

      Srk’s better performance IMO is KHKN, Sawdes and agree on Yes Boss

      Aamir’s : AHAT and Rangeela

      • sputnik 9 years ago

        Agree with you on KHKN, Swades, AHAT and Rangeela.

    • Baba Ji 9 years ago

      yes sputnik – i prefer amitabh in trishul.i think he brought the revengeful charcter written by salim-javed alive on screen.

      srk has his best screen moment in darr.he brought his own style into it and made the character his own,

      aamirs best for me is jjws.He showed excellent transformation from a careless teenager to a mature brother/son.lagaan comes second.

      salmans best for me is veergati 🙂

      • sputnik 9 years ago

        The Trishul character is an just an extension/reworking of Deewar character. Trishul is more catering towards Amitabh’s star image by giving him some seeti maar scenes/dialogues. The Ambulance fight scene is inspired from the Deewar godown fight scene. And the climax and ending is total masala with the kidnapping and all.

        There is one scene where Amitabh’s mother Waheeda Rahman dies and the camera literally zooms into Amitabh’s face and lets Amitabh say some dialogues and “act”. You can sense that the director said “Action”.

        But the revenge character also became a cop out in the second half.

        • Baba Ji 9 years ago

          how is trishul extension of deewar? in deewar ,amitabh is anti-hero,in trishul he is hero.The fundas of both characters are totally different.amitabh in deewar is a frustrated guy.In zanjeer he is revengeful , cunning yet someone with morals.

  4. Baba Ji 9 years ago

    Milind – good effort but to be honest,I got bored reading it.There is over-analysis for simple aspects as john galt already said.A syndrome satyam suffers from…

    • Tulmul 9 years ago

      Lol 🙂

    • fearlesssoul 9 years ago

      Baba – Satyam himself is a kind of disease, Milind is just a symptom

      @Milind – couldn’t finish off your post. Why don’t you start directing then writing. The depth of your explanation and exaggeration will go deep down into the actors mind and soul resulting in a film like GUNDA 😉

      • sputnik 9 years ago


        I have posted the Chariots of Fire theme (which was the inspiration for the old Doordarshan ad with PT Usha and other celebs) in my Top 10 movie themes post. Do check out.

    • sputnik 9 years ago

      LOL 🙂

  5. narad_muni 9 years ago

    I too couldn’t finish it off ….sorry for that.
    Milu, u writing is brilliant but frankly, I do not think so much about movies.
    In the past as well, I have read few of your posts where in you have explained the significance of some scenes in not-so-good movies. And I am pretty sure that neither the writer,director or actors would have thought about it.
    Acting is about convincing portrayal of a character, and the ability to connect at an emotional level with the audience. If some one is able to connect with me, that is good acting. And since this is a very personal feeling, it is almost impossible to give it an objective definition which is universally acceptable.
    I believe SRK’s best performances have been in KHKN,Swades n Chak De.
    Aamir was great in Rangeela, Sarfarosh and Lagaan..
    Sallu……………hmmmmmmmmm………….. Veergati 🙂 (Baba ji’s ardent follower).

  6. narad_muni 9 years ago

    I agree that if HAHK had Dino Moreo instead of Sallu, it would not have mattered. LOL 🙂

    Thank God Danish is not here otherwise he would have crashed TQ server 🙂 🙂

  7. lambu 9 years ago

    BigB — less said is best…
    Dilip — i dont have capability to rate him
    aamir — sarfarosh, jjws
    srk — devdas, swades
    salman — KA, veergati, tere naam

  8. lambu 9 years ago

    and milind about writeup..
    when i read them rather than checking what u want to say..
    i just flow with your writing.. u have amazing talent to have a grip on the viewer.. 🙂

  9. Author
    Milind 9 years ago

    Before I clarify my stand vis a vis the article,fid anyonr read thr hahk defence for salman

  10. Author
    Milind 9 years ago

    Before I clarify my stand vis a vis the article,did anyone ead the hahk defence for salman

  11. fearlesssoul 9 years ago

    @Milind – Before getting my ARSE (Your fav word) kicked RED & BLUE, I just want to be brave and courageous enough to tell you that according to me that 1 minute you pointed out in HAHK (Salman starts singing “Mujhse Juda Hokar” and Madhuri listens.That 1 minute is sheer magic.Salman in that 1 minute encompasses the myriad emotions-namely-loss,happiness,responsibility,love,restraint,silence.), Even God of acting Mr. Dilip Kumar the Tragedy King would have failed to enact or portray the myriad of emotions in that EK minute 😉

    • Author
      Milind 9 years ago

      Come o FS–You cannot take my arse–red and blue seriously know I respect your views! 😀

      • fearlesssoul 9 years ago

        I was kidding so that you start kicking 😉

  12. fearlesssoul 9 years ago

    Salman’s best – AAA, Pyar Kiya to Darna Kya, Jab Pyar Kisise Hota Hai, Tere Naam, Wanted, Dabang and Karan Arjun

    Aamir’s best – AAA, Rang de basanti, lagaan, 3Idiots, QSQT, JJWS, Dil Chahta hai, Sarfarosh and Ishq

    Amitabh’s best – AAA, Zanjeer, Trishul, Deewar, Muqaddar ka sikandar, Paa, Sholay, Agneepath, Act in Mohabbatien, Sarkar, Khakee many other which i may have missed it

    Srk’s best – Kabi Haan Kabi Naa, Darr, CDI, KKHH, Swadesh, Deewana and Anjam

    Dilip Kumar’s best – Andaz, Mugle Azam, Aan, Ganga Jamuna, Devdas, Saudagar, Shakti, Naya daur, Kohinoor and Leader, personally for me even ram aur shyam, gopi, Aadmi, paigam etc.. were gem coz i saw these films at primary/highschool level and still i could recall some of the scenes and moments of those films which i could hardly recall some of my own fav’s 1990’s films and so of others.

  13. Author
    Milind 9 years ago

    There is a sheer misconception that directors shoot scenes without thinking much.I believe even the most ediocre directors have a thought process. Let me explain.

    In Deewar,the reflection of tall buildings in Amitabh’s eyes is not “just aise hi” acene.Ki bas ho gaya. It is a beautifully thought out process. Many forget Deewar scene per scene. Amitabh while polishing the shoes is shown to be struggling to make a living on the roads that leads to the skyscrapers. His eyes have even learnt to accept the insult the inscription on his hands give him.It is this point where he crosses the threshold of shame at such an inscription on his hand–Mera Baap Chor Hai–that he crosses all limits to desire for the sky. Thus when he rise above the ranks and for the first time can come in the vicinity of such stuffs,the reflection in his dark glasses make it apparent that the transformation from a normal poor guy polishing shoes to a man ready to conquer the city has been fulfilled. Its hilarious thinking that people make it a point to emphasize that directors,script writers make no point to be metaphorical. Sometimes they are superficially metaphorical when the blood can act as a “sindoor”,sometimes they are deeply metaphorical when a son on the wrong path dies in front of God ,in the arms of his mother thereby allowing for the poetic justice to be served. The scene with Parveen Bobby is a very bold one.Such scenes with the female smoking cigarette post conjugally is a bold one that Chopras made.But it was not the boldness I am referring to.It is the reflection that as you rise up the ranks in a dirty world,the glass stops becoming half full.It starts becoming empty. And such scenes are well thought of.They do not happen in thin air.They are no products of “Set par aaye,haan bhai jo likha hai usko aise kar do,kya jaata hai”. A thought process is involved.And I have emphasized to evoke that thought process. Thanks.

    I never liked Gaman.Muzzafar Ali was far better in Umrao Jaan.The closing shots of Gaman have a very peculiar and striking inspiration from Taxi driver,albeit in a different context!

    Damini was such a bland film.The film I suppose did not do well.It was average I guess.Correct me If I am wrong. Had Sunny not spiced up the second half ,the film would have been a total disaster.Emphatic summation is the term here.Sunny took all the purpose of the film ,amalgamted it into a broader national perspective and shelled out an emphatic performance.Ecah movie that is remembered has few very well written and well thought of scenes.There is a constant thought process behind them.AndI stick to that point.Its so hilarious to think that a certain Daman,Mirch Masala,Ardhsatya will have thought out scenes but a Chandni,Damini,AAA,HAHK,DDLJ,Deewar will not have.Commercial Cinema needs more brain work,I guess!

  14. Author
    Milind 9 years ago

    There should have been an effort to read the article.

    Let me take up Salman’s case.

    First let me tell you why I chose Tom Cruise as the reference point. Tom’s three films– Moneyball,Top Gun,Days of Thunder and one more have him as an young rookie who is vulnerable.A girl comes in his life that allows stability.He matures over the length and breadth of the film.He understands his own infirmities.He takes it upon him to complete the lacunae in his persona. This is where Salman fits in the example I quoted. HAHK is basically a Salman film all the way.From a vulnerable,immtaure normal guy he turns into a guy who can sacrifice his love for the betterment of his family. He converts from being shallow to a grave man.And if Nicole Kidman provided the stability in Days of Thunder,here it was Madhuri who does the trick. That 1 minute on the phone is the scene of transformation being completed.Reamarkable stuff! But lost because we are driven by herd mentality that a Mandi can be awesome but a HAHK cannot boats of such deep metaphorical scenes. I never over-judge,.Yes I make an earnest effort to atleast allow the film to speak to me rather tha me dismissing outrightly!

    • sputnik 9 years ago

      The other movie of Tom Cruise that you are talking about is probably Risky Business. By Moneyball you probably mean The Color of Money. Of these I have seen Risky Business and Top Gun and these are all about Tom Cruise’s character and in the climax its all totally about Tom Cruise.

      I get what you are trying to say but I don’t think that is true for Salman’s character in HAHK. I dont think he was reckless or irresponsible before and he suddenly matures. His character is a goody goody obedient type from the start and his character was not shallow or anything.

      And I am posting the scene that you are talking about. Its Madhuri who starts singing that she will take care of the kid (farz nibhaungi) so its all Madhuri’s decision. Even in the climax of the movie it is all about Madhuri, the dog and Mohnish Behl. That’s why I said Salman is not important.

      • Author
        Milind 9 years ago

        I would like to quote a scene prior to this.When Anupam Kher comes with a suggestion that Nisha be married to Mohnish,then Salman is shocked.He goes to his room ,sees Nisha;s pic and comes back resolved to let the thing happen. He could easily have told the truth.Infact Nisha is quite unknown to all of this till her friends read out the card at her mehendi or something. She is taken back by surprise and the these scenes happen.Here she is not only the one important as Salman had already sacrificed.His silence was the clue to the second half!

  15. John Galt 9 years ago


    No one said that there isn’t a thought process involved, its just that, in your postmortem report you are reporting not just the cause and manner of killing but also the reason why the dead person was wearing a yellow shirt and why his wisdom tooth has no wisdom in it.

    Of course there’s a thought process involved and I completely agree about the building in the eyes scene in deewar (everyone and anyone can figure that out–its more of an in your face kind of a deal), but I don’t buy Amitabh actually sitting in a chair and thinking “hmm , ab is agle scene mein mujhe Ambition,Hunger,Greed,Love,Revenge,Responsibility sab ek saath dikhana hai…let me prepare myself for that”

    I just believe that some of the best performances, products and creations are a result of simplicity rather than putting one’s foot around the neck and thinking for 20 minutes.

    “The closing shots of Gaman have a very peculiar and striking inspiration from Taxi driver,albeit in a different context!”

    Well if you think like that, then maybe we saw the movies differently or maybe you know more about cinema than I do.

  16. Author
    Milind 9 years ago

    Regards Gaman I was just commenting on the striking resemblance of Farookh Sheikh,as far as I can remember now,driving a taxi in a city that that did him no good. Thus I said striking resemblance,albeit in a vastly different context!

    “hmm , ab is agle scene mein mujhe Ambition,Hunger,Greed,Love,Revenge,Responsibility sab ek saath dikhana hai…let me prepare myself for that”

    No one thinks like that.Where have I said it.My comment was about how Amitabh brought out myriad emotions through the length and breadth of a film and demarcating each one of them. Amitabh must have a clue what is Chopra going to make.He has not played the character without a thought.”Ki sets par aa gayae hai to chalo jo Chopra bolta hai kar dete hain”. Each scene might not be thought of,that ispossible but important scenes are always thought of.The setting is decided. There is another scene where Amitabh does not accept the money from Daawar Saheb that is thrown to him.The glass panes show a part of the entire Bombay city.That is a thought out setting.The setting to emphasize–He came.He aw.He conquered. Amitabh might not have shot–Which dress I am gonna wera but he certainly analysed the scenes with much sincerity,thus you have a legendary dialogue interaction with the God.You just do not come on the sets and do that.No actor in the world is as natural as that.Even the most natural actors like Ashok Kumar used to rehearse a lot.They thought,planned and then executed.

  17. John Galt 9 years ago

    Of course they rehearse but do they think about all the stuff you inferred from them? Deewar is a classic and its very well thought out -scene wise- but I do not think the significance and expression Biden meaning you are trying to extract out of it was present in the first place.

    Anyhow, I also believe an audience is the best judge of an artwork at their respective individual level. So if you are actually seeing all those meanings.. well than that’s you take and its fine. I can’t ever disagree to someone’s opinion.

  18. Author
    Milind 9 years ago

    Respect your views John Glat.Infact thanks for having a discussion.

    Don’t we do a thesis work on films,books,.Recently there was a furore regarding a woman of DU/JNU wanting to do a thesis work of Salman Rushdie’s Satanic Verses.She would have her own inference.She would dissect it,praise it,look for metaphors. I perfectly believe Deewar had plenty of them.As Sputnik pointed out earlier,even Bachchan’s later efforts stole very much from Zanjeer and Deewar. I am just expressing my views regarding stuffs in Deewar or Yes Boss in the manner I have come to see them. There is a scene between Dilip and Anil in Mashaal. Watch out DK here to see how he has made it a point to enact that scene by infusing a lot of thought process.He makes correct angles,the camera follows his face,suddenly captures his whole figure,he runs towards the street and thus acts as a kinetic energy particle that can shift fro here and there and still be the focus of attraction.His act starts from a Sofa,traverses the room,goes on the street,expresses the angst and returns to the gate.Many scenes are thought of.Only if we have our own ways to decipher them.It is equally good if we don’t.I agree being over critical is also not good.But I am just remarking the way I see. Another great scene that comes to my mind is the chase in Black Friday.Marvellously executed but here the director gets the credit for planning out the scene in such a manner.You feel there is a chase going on.You get involved.Kashyap allows for that interaction!

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