A warm welcome to all friends visiting the site with a loving invitation to read my personal expressions on movies, music, poetry and life.

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July 22, 2014 Tuesday     
Offering a very few off-beat gems like HIGHWAY, QUEEN and ANKHON DEKHI (the first two ironically also included in the list!), the early half of year 2014 continued to have many inspired as well officially remade films which clearly revealed that we are seriously short of good writers and new ideas to work upon in our Hindi films.
And here goes the list…..!
1. Yaarian – A mix and match concept inspired from “Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar’ (1992), “Ugly Betty” T.V. serial plot (2006) and “Student of The Year” (2012).
2. Hasee Toh Phasee – A reverse gender version of “Mere Brother Ki Dulhan” (2011).
3. Darr @ The Mall – Another loosely inspired version of “Grave Encounters” (2011).
4. Bewakoofiyaan - Its basic plot reminds you of the famous “Meet The Parents” (2000) series of films.
5. Ragini MMS 2
– Takes the 2 small kid girls straight from “A Tale of Two Sisters” (2003).
6. O Teri –
Has a very strong influence of “Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron” (1983) in its various sequences.
7. Disco Singh (Punjabi)Entirely based on
French Comedy “The Valet” (2006), which was earlier copied by Govinda & David Dhawan in “Do Knot Disturb” (2009).
8. Jatt James Bond (Punjabi)Based on a plot borrowed from “Charley Varrick” (1973) which was too based on John Reese’s novel titled “The Looters”.
9. Queen – Partially inspired from “The Art of Travel” (2008) and faced allegations too for the same.
10. Fugly –
Borrows the basic inspirations for its overall format and execution from films like “Paanch” (2003 – Unreleased officially), “Shaitan” (2011), “Fukrey” (2013) and “Rang De Basanti” (2006).
11. Humshakals -
Takes one scene from the famous “Marx Brothers” (mirror sequence), one from “Amar Akbar Anthohy” (1977) and a whole phrase from Kishore Da’s “Half Ticket” (1962) wherein he constantly says, “Main Paagal Nahin Hun, Mera Dimaag Kharaab Hai”.
12. Ek Villain – Reworked
Indianised version of the Korean film “I Saw The Devil” (2010)

Official Remakes of the West as well as Hindi and Regional Indian Films.
1. Jai Ho – Official remake of a Telugu Film “Stalin” (2006).
2. Heartless – Reportedly an official remake of English flick “Awake” (2007)
3. Highway – Remake of one of Imtiaz Ali’s T.V. Serial episode of the series called “Rishtey” with the same title “Highway” aired more than a decade back.

4. Total Siyapaa – Remake
a Spanish comedy “Only Human” aka “Seres Queridos” (2004).
5. Gang of Ghosts –
Remake of Bengali hit comedyBhooter Bhabishyat” (2012).
6. Main Tera Hero – Remake of
2011 Telugu hit “Kandireega”.
7. Heropanti – Remake
of 2008 Telugu hit “Parugu”.
8. Citylights - Remake of a widely acclaimed gem titled “Metro Manila”made in Tagalog language in the year 2013.
9. Holiday -
Remake of the Tamil hit “Thuppaki” (2012).

Inspired Movies from Real Life Incidents and Life Stories
1. Gulaab Gang – Supposedly based on the true story of Gulaabi Gang’s leader Smt. Sampat Pal who also filed a case against the film for the same.
2. Lakshmi – Reportedly inspired from real life incident in Andhra Pradesh.
3. Youngistaan –
Straight away reminds you of a leading political party and its young leader.
4. Manjunath – Based on a tragic as well as shocking happening of the year 2005.
5. X-Pose –
Has a whole list of real life events used in the film related with the Hindi Film Industry. (So do read the detailed review for all instances incorporated in the script.)

Inspired Movies from Literature and Books
1. Dedh Ishqiya – The writers pay a very smart and hidden tribute to the famous progressive Urdu writer “Ismat Chugtai” by intelligently adapting her controversial story “Lihaaf” in the script partially and mentioning the name too in one of its dialogues.
2. 2 States – An official adaptation of Chetan Bhagat’s novel with the same title.

(Note: Please do let me know if you are aware of any other inspired movie which came in the period of Jan-Jun 2014 but is not listed here by chance.)
Tags : Half Yearly Inspired Hindi Movies List of 2014 Till June with Borrowed or Similar Themes, Articles on cinema by Bobby Sing at bobbytalkscinema.com, Inspired Films of 2014, Official Remakes released in 2014, Borrowed Hindi Films of 2014.
21 July 2014 / bobbysing /
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Aaj Phir Tumpe Pyar Aaya HaiFeroz Khan’s mega venture DAYAVAN (1988), a remake of Tamil cult classic NAYAGAN/NAYAKAN (1987), didn’t get a great response at the box office due to various reasons. But its soundtrack is still remembered for its quality tracks composed by veteran music director duo Laxmikant Pyarelal.
Returning to that era of late 80s, those were the days when film music used to reach the market months before its actual release and particularly a Feroz Khan film’s music was much awaited eagerly due to its own brand value built by the banner’s earlier big musical hits like DHARMATMA, QURBANI & JAANBAZ. Plus Vinod Khanna had just returned to the Industry after a long gap (coming from OSHO’s commune in America), hence his every project was looked upon with great expectations both by the industry people as well as the viewers together.
The soundtrack released by T-Series became famous right away in the mid of 1988. But interestingly its major hit was “Chahey Meri Jaan Tu Le Le” sung by Jolly & Sapna Mukherjee penned by Indivar, instead of the now more famous “Aaj Phir Tumpe Pyar Aaya Hai” soulfully rendered by Pankaj Udhas & Anuradh Paudwal written by Aziz Qaisi. However the preferences were not the same once the news was out about its never before kind of kissing scene between the lead pair of Vinod Khanna and Madhuri Dixit, which till date remains one of the most erotic bedroom scenes ever in a Hindi film.
Now those were not the days of internet connectivity, 200 TV channels or all these social networks. Therefore just the news of such an intense scene (spread through the film magazines) was enough to create a huge curiosity for the film in the trade circles. As a result, it got an ‘A’ certificate from the censors and we were denied our entry into the theater in the first 12 pm show since our school dresses revealed it all to the gatekeepers. So we had to go for another film right away (it was HERO HIRALAL as I can recall) and then later watched DAYAVAN in the night show quite excitedly without any entry problem.
Somehow the movie couldn’t fulfill the expectations raised by the general public widely but DAYAVAN did become hugely popular just because of that one song alone having the controversial kissing sequence between its lead pair. In fact such was the excitement around that particular ‘less than 1 minute’ sequence, that the musical beauty of the melodious track got completely overshadowed by its erotic picturisation and the song simply became more of a visual treat for majority of people all over, ignoring everything else about its melody, lyrics or arrangements.
Decades have passed and in the present net age, the track is still more seen and less heard in the web circles for the obvious reason mentioned above. And I am sure the makers of HATE STORY 2 also selected this particular track for their erotic film just because of the song’s preceding history alone and not for any musical brilliance at all looking at the way it has been used in their mediocre film deliberately.
However here I would like to draw your attention towards the quality difference between the two tracks musically, which clearly reveals the amount of hard work our veterans used to put in while making every single song in the film’s soundtrack unconditionally……, a practice which now seems to be only a part of our rich musical history of the last century.
To explain it in a layman’s language just listen to the two tracks simultaneously and focus on their Antras (stanzas) plus the music coming in between these stanzas which is technically termed as Interludes. Now in the DAYAVAN track both the antras and their interludes have been composed beautifully (& distinctively) making some extra efforts with the use of flute and other instruments along with the outstanding rhythm breaks played wonderfully. Whereas in the current new age version, the interlude music is simply there as a required filler without any soul of its own or melody.
Further in the lyrics section, the master lyricists and music directors of the past never allowed any forced-in words/lines in their songs which actually are not fitting into the meter of their composition properly. So you will never find any word/line sounding awkward in a track or not gelling well with the flow since everything was roped in so smoothly looking after each and every word very carefully.
However in the present HATE STORY 2 version, the words are not fitting in well in the line,
“Phir Zarrey Zarrey Mein Deedaar Aaya Hai” (pushed into the meter)
& the message sounds weird in the expression
“Aur Tu Hi Woh Firaaq Hai Jisko, Hai Silsilon Ne Mere Paas Laya ??????????”
Still the singer goes on singing it forcefully and the music director has no problem in keeping this awkward ‘take’ like an ignorant creator because they are actually just concerned about the opening lines to sound good and nothing else. Moreover the market response also supports them strongly since how many of today’s young listeners actually know or care about the antra-lyrics and the interlude music composition putting it bluntly?
So no doubt our film music has lost its original path somehow in these two recent decades for sure. Since now instead of making a song with a team putting all its creative efforts collectively, the tracks are openly being purchased as a readymade product from the vendor as per the requirement of the producer to use it in his promotions. And that exactly is the reason a well-made LP song as “Aaj Phir Tumpe Pyar Aaya Hai” continues to be known for all wrong reasons even after 25 years since the makers were just interested in re-using the avoidable controversy it created back in 1988 and were least interested in any of its meaningful lyrics or melodious composition written by the masters.
Still the situation can change taking it positively.
But this change has to come from the listeners alone becoming more responsible and demanding in the future. Because the producers are obviously going to make whatever sells like soaps and detergents in the market fetching them their desired profits and they damn care about the quality of music stored in your hard disks, phones and USB drives in the current net age.
To give you an idea about how we always keep ignoring all the better things, the moment any one says DAYAVAN, the first thing comes to your mind is the kissing scene in its song “Aaj Phir Tumpe Pyar Aaya Hai” featuring Madhuri and Vinod Khanna. But rarely any one would recall another memorable sad song in its soundtrack (written by Indivar & sung by Mohd. Aziz) with the words, “Dil Tera Kisne Torha, Yun Tanha Kisne Chorha” which was the best track of the film as per my personal choice along with a Holi festival song “Diwani Tum Jawano Ki Toli" featuring a fabulous musical arrangement.
But sadly, that’s how we have been conditioned to live our lives so casually on whatever is fed by the marketing forces through the media and I hope listening to these enjoyable tracks, you start realizing what all we have been missing in our film music since these last few decades………unfortunately!
Tags : Aaj Phir Tumpe Pyar Aaya Hai - A Song known for all wrong reasons, Dayavan music by Laxmikant Pyarelal, Famous controversies of Bollywood, Most Erotic Scenes in Hindi Films, Articles on Cinema by Bobby Sing, Articles on Music, Poetry and Life by Bobby Sing at bobbytalkscinema.com, Nostalic Articles about the 80s Hindi Cinema.
20 July 2014 / bobbysing /
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Utpal Dutt - Bobby Talks Cinema,comUtpal Dutt, whom the Hindi film viewers largely remember for his famous comical acts in cult comedies such as GOL MAAL, LAKHON KI BAAT, RANG BIRANGI, SHAUKEEN and many more was actually a multifaceted personality with some lesser discussed but astonishing capabilities, more known to the Bengali films and theatre audiences. Putting it honestly, it’s really a pity that the Hindi belt mostly knows this great thinker as a mere comedian saying “Achhaaaaa” in his own impeccable style in all those entertaining comedies and only a few really know about his great insightful works and background of an eminent theatre activist, film-maker & writer in Bengal.
Living his given creative years between 1920 and 1993, Utpal Dutt was not only a remarkable actor but was also an inspirational writer-playwright and director too beginning his ‘Little Theater Group” as a contributing step towards the growth of Modern Indian Theatre in the late 40s. Later his writings and plays started depicting the political state of the world/country full of Marxist ideologies and revolutionary ideas challenging the system itself, for which he even had to go underground and was also jailed in those evolutionary years of Indian theatre history of the last century.
As an actor, Dutt acted in over 100 Bengali and Hindi films in his noteworthy career and gave many splendid award winning performances in classics like Mrinal Sen’s BHUVAN SHOME (1969 – National Award for Best Actor), plus GOL MAAL, NARAM GARAM, RANG BIRANAGI & SAHEB (winning Filmfare Awards for Best Comic Actor & Supporting role). The Sangeet Natak Akademi awarded him the reputed Fellowship for Lifetime Contribution to Theatre in the year 1990 and apart from the plays, Utpal Dutt also directed more than 6 Bengali films and one Hindi project too in the mid-80s.
As a prolific writer, he wrote numerous articles, reviews & seminar papers in a career span of around four decades and at present his five compilation books are available for all interested friends, published by Seagull Books of Kolkata with the following titles:
1. Towards a Revolutionary Theatre
2. Three Plays: Hunting the Sun, The Great Rebellion, Nightmare City
3. Rights of Man
4. On Theatre
5. On Cinema
Utpal Dutt on Cinema - Book ReviewNow from the above five, one book which tells you a lot about the astonishing knowledge, a keen eye and the impressive analytical vision this creative man possessed in his powerful identity is the book ‘On Cinema’ in particular, which introduces the reader to a completely different Utpal Dutt who has an amazing understanding about all kinds of cinema & its maestros known in the other parts of the world too. And a person who has got a lot to talk about the personal, social and moral responsibilities of a creative artist, other than just enjoying the riches coming along with the success achieved in his respective field.
The book is a collection of his fiery writings on cinema, few brutally truthful reviews of important films, personal letters to Ray, some insightful pieces on Sen’s MRIGYA & GENESIS along with two individual chapters on Chaplin’s autobiography and Kurosawa’s cinema to sum it all. In addition the compilation also has the telefilm script by Dutt titled “In Search of Theater” probably written in the early phase of his career. The writings are deep, thoughtful and potent enough to generate a new respect for the veteran, especially in the case of Hindi film viewers who just know the actor Utpal Dutt as a mere comedian with some exceptional gifted skills and hilarious mannerisms.
In fact at times such is the passionate honesty in his chosen words that it surprises you about how rebellious he used to be in his seminars and public meetings without any fear of a controversy or any government action against him for his expressed thoughts. For instance the following excerpt would clearly convey the same taken from the time period when Ray was given an OSCAR by the Academy of Motion Pictures in 1991 in the hospital itself.
“The Government of India, as usual, woke up later, after a night of revelry, discovered a genius in Calcutta and hastened to confer something called the Bharat Ratna upon him – only because the Americans gave him the Oscar. Of course, Ray had previously won every prize the film world has to offer – at Cannes, at Venice, at Berlin………….!
But an American award is a different thing altogether. So the game of sharing in Ray’s glory began in great haste in New Delhi, and, since the man was already in Coma, it was safe to heap the Bharat Ratna on him. Men in coma cannot refuse awards.”
                                                                             (In a seminar on Ray in Delhi in 1992)
In another chapter Dutt even goes further and says,
“In this country especially – a bunch of unscrupulous and thoroughly cynical tycoons control all resources, all production, all circuits of distribution and profits. They claim to entertain the masses, and the morality of their means is no consequence to them whatsoever. If opium gave them easier profits, they would trade in opium.
That’s the way they speak, openly and unashamedly. If a film is a hit, it’s a good film. And if a Ray film flops or a Benegal film doesn’t do business at the box office, then those films are bad films – period.
In Bombay they make films as a factory makes soap and sells it, wholesale or retail. The masses want them that way, they say. In reality, they have manipulated the masses into a state of cultural prostration.
You have to see the shit they churn out to believe it – pardon my expression”.
               (In a keynote address at Delhi’s International Film Festival of India in 1979)
This was the original UTPAL DUTT, the true artist........ and I bet almost ninety percent of the Hindi movie watching population would be unaware of this more important and powerful persona of the thinking actor-writer-director, who flawlessly played Bhawani Shanker, the moustache loving employer of Amol Palekar in GOL MAAL.
However I am sure after reading this article, no one (among the Hindi films viewers) would ever treat the veteran creative genius as a mere comedian alone in the future.

(Note : Coming next another rare article about the unique relationship between Utpal Dutt and Amitabh Bachchan illustrious career…….So Stay Tuned)
Tags : Utpal Dutt the theater activist and writer, Utpal Dutt the author, Utpal Dutt and his book on Cinema, Did You Know facts of Hindi Films by Bobby Sing, Books on Cinema at bobbytalkscinema.com, Books on Hindi Films Reviews by Bobby Sing, Utpal Dutt on Cinema by Seagull Publications.
12 July 2014 / bobbysing /
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