I can understand if someone is not interested to watch SHOLAY, which is registered as a true blue classic, in today’s time. This film released almost 4 decades back and for young generation who are born in the early 90’s, “Sholay” would be a over-rated film because we are often bombarded with the films what we call as “masala”.
My history with SHOLAY: I had watched this film in around 2008 in theaters when it was re-released for just 3-4 days. I was damn excited to watch this film back then as I am for maximum of films. When I watched it, I had enjoyed the film, although I didn’t label it “one of my favorite films of all time” kind of stuff which usually, for people who had watched it back in time, was apt way to put the love for Sholay in words. I found some moments too dragged. Also some episodes were simply lacking any form of value like the one involving Asrani which lasted for ten minutes, each second trying to be funny, but didn’t bring even a smile on my face. Also I found the film deathly long. Seriously, 205 minutes is too much for this “yo” generation. But yes I had enjoyed the film but I also forgot the experience within very less time.
Cut to 3rd January 2014, when I bought myself a 9am show ticket of SHOLAY 3d and took my seats with around 100 odd people in theater. I was excited again as I wanted to see did I miss something the last time around! And I found my answer- I missed a lot of things.
No, still I wont call it my favorite film or anything such. But this time it felt like a very good experience. An experience composed of some elements that will linger in my head and heart for long time.
I loved the camaraderie between Jai and Veeru. I felt their scenes together had a lively intensity that was across the board. And then I loved this song called “Yeh dosti…hum nai todenge..”. Frankly, this song I used just for cheesy humor till date. But while watching this film, I really took to the lyrics. And then of-course the “Jab tak hai jaan..mei naachungi” song. It felt overdone, yes, but I realized how heart-wrenching the song would have been back in mid-70’s. If films like “Maine Pyaar Kiya”, “Dilwaale Dulhaniya Le Jaayenge” created impact for its larger-than-life syntax of story-telling, I can wonder how beautiful SHOLAY was!
The acting is top class. Especially Dharmendra and Amitabh Bachchan. It also could be because of the fact that they had really good roles. Amjad Khan’s character which is possibly the most sinister villain in our Cinema has a lot to do with Salim-Javed’s terrific dialogues and sheer talent of Amjad Khan.
The 3d effects were there during fight sequences. Some of them were fab- in the first 3d effect of the film, I felt like I was shot a bullet in my eyes,
All in all, SHOLAY is for those people who has the patience to believe that a film that lasts 205 minutes long can also do the wonders. Its not a great film IMO, for obvious reasons, but I today definitely realized how much love the film garnered when the film had released back in time.
P.S. I remember my dad telling me that how he bunked his schools to go to watch Sholay. He has seen it 13 times in theater. This was a main reason why I chose to watch this film in theaters. Now I can envy him.