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Today, I will be putting up this fun post for all of you. I love the olden goldies, I love the black and white and the Eastman color movies. I love the original and the oft repeated stories of those movies, I love the music of that era, the love affairs, the melodrama, the “Yahoo” style of Shammi Kapoor, the “Charlie Chaplin “ style of Raj Kapoor, the exquisite and sensuous dancing of Helen, The Tragedy queen that was MeenaKumari, and the Devdas that was Dilip Kumar and Guru Dutt, the beauty that was Madhubala, The “Mera Saya” that was Sadhana, and the most handsome and casual attitude of Dev Anand. I am in love with the late 1950s to early 1970s movie. I have loved the highest number of hits in a row, a record not yet broken; given by Rajesh Khanna; and the Emergence of Babumoshai- our Big B Amitabh Bachhan. I am a fanatic follower of these olden goldies, which are ever green to me. Bollywood saw a transition in the 1970s, with real location shooting, multi-star cast movies; and with Eastman color living no more. I personally feel that the earlier movies were much better, than those which were released in the later half of 1970s. We lost those directors, script writers, the classical music and the soulful songs of the earlier era. The year 1975, was, in a way, the very divider between the two genres of movies which were released in the Hindi Film Industry.
Now-a days, if we see the ratio of hits and flops in a year, the number of hits can actually be counted on fingers. They are so less, and the bandwagon is all after joining the 100cr, 200cr, and 250cr club. Are any of these movies or songs really memorable? I do enjoy watching some of the movies; but only a very very few are really memorable ones. But, do you know, that the year 1975, had so many hit as well as memorable movies and beautiful songs; you really lose count. Was the year 1975 really so lucky for the Hindi film industry? Let’s have a look.
1) Sholay: “Mujhe bephijul baat karne ki aadat to hai nahi,” released on 15th August 1975, this was a first in many ways. It was initially declared a flop; only to change the rating a couple of weeks later to be declared a blockbuster hit with many Golden and Silver Jubilee runs all over India. It was the first multi star cast movie, which had stereophonic sound system and used 70 mm widescreen in it. The dialogues like “tumhara naam kya hai Basanti,” “Aaadhe idhar jaao, aadhe udhar jaao, baaki mere saath aao, “K*tte, main tera khoon pi jaaoonga”, “ Basanti, in kuttonke beech mat naachna” are still on the tip our tongues. The offer of Dharmendra marriage which Amitabh Bachchan tells in his style to mausi, the non-stop talk of Basanti; the draamebaazi of Dharmendra on top of a water tank, and of course, who can forget Dhanno, Kaalia, Saamba,Gabbar Singh and Thakur. The beautiful songs, the lovely tune which Amitabh plays on his mouth-organ, it’s an incomplete list, not even a single scene of the movie is worth not speaking about. Did you know; Jaya Bachchan was actually pregnant during the shooting of this film. Dharmendra seemingly proposed his love to HemaMalini during this movie’s shooting. Big B’s role was to be done by Shatrughan Sinha, and Gabbar Singh’s role was to be done by Danny Denzongpa. The budget of the movie went over and above the original by many times; in the almost 2 and half years it took to shoot this movie. This movie ran in Minerva Cinema for 5 long years; and is, without doubt the largest ever money- grossing movies ever (if you negate the inflation). The movie won many awards, and was re-released in 3D format early this year.
2) Deewar: This is the next in my list of favorites; starring Amitabh and Shashi Kapoor, with Parveen Babi and Neetu Singh as the female leads. This movie consolidated Amitabh Bacchan’s model of the “Angry Young Man,” with some beautiful songs, memorable dialogues, and punch-packed action. The scene under the bride of “Mere Paas Ma Hai,” is still fresh in our minds.
3) Chupke Chupke: A complete laugh riot, again starring Dharmendra and Amitabh Bachchan, was a complete contrast to Sholay. This is a total family entertainer, which all generations of people would enjoy. It had Sharmila Tagore and Jaya Bachchan in it, with Om Prakash in a role of a lifetime.
4) Julie: Beautiful and sensuous songs; this can undoubtedly be claimed as the first widely seen sensuous movie. It had a strong and socially relevant story line of an unwed mother; and was beautifully enacted by Lakshmi in the title role. It also had Sridevi in it; in the role of Julie’s younger sister; and the best role enacted was definitely by Nadira.
5) Khel Khel Mein: The college goers, young lovers movies were coming up; and very rightly had the most young and romantic pair of that era – the chocolate boy Rishi Kapoor and the bubbly Neetu Singh. It was a start of another era of Hindi films, where young college boys and girls were doing “ Khullam Khulla Pyaar Karenge”, with “Ek main aurEktu”…in the college campus. This movie had all the first love blossimg in the college campus, in the backdrop of a murder mystery.This pair was a superb hit onscreen and share a great chemistry, which later became off-screen as well. A must watch movie.
6) Rafoo Chakkar: Another laugh riot, it had Rishi Kapoor and Paintal in the lead “female” roles.
The concept of laughing on cross gender dressing first started with this movie. This one had beautiful songs between Rishi Kapoor and NeetuSingh..”Kisi pe Dil agar aa jaye to kya hota hai,” “ChukChukChukChuk” and is still one of the best comedy movies of all times.
7) Jai Santoshi Maa: A super duper hit movie, it was based totally on religious sentiments; in the backdrop of evergreen songs. If there were any movies that year which broke all the records, it was Sholay and Jai Santoshi Ma. Two entirely contrasting movies. Jai Santoshi Maa became a hit, and everybody started doing Goddess Santoshi Maa’s puja on Friday…..which is still done now. The songs were all extremely melodious and hummable even now.
8) Aandhi: A “great” film of its times, it was critically very well acclaimed; its release was restricted due to the political situation in the country at that time. It had Suchitra Sen, playing the role of a political leader (aka…a very well known political leader of those times); with Sanjeev Kumar as her husband; had melodious music (Tere Bina Zindagi Se Koi Shikwa Toh Nahi), it was extremely well received by all intellectuals and many others of those times.
9) Khushboo: A beautiful film ; which had Jeetendra and Hema Malini in totally deglam lead roles, and had many melodious and soulful music of R D Burman in it. Hema Malini delivers a winner in this movie too; with her portraying a woman of substance; who does not say much, but has a strong mind of her own. Made by Gulzar; the story line was top notch; as was the acting; and the music (O maajhi re).
10) Mausam: Another top notch story line; with a top notch movie. It had Sanjeev Kumar as a doctor; with Sharmila Tagore in a double role of mother and daughter. The daughter plays the role of a prostitute; who falls in love with a much older Sanjeev Kumar; who was trying to reform her; having guilty feelings about having abandoned her mother. Do you recognize another movie along similar story line?
11) Mili: The role of a terminally ill yet bubbly Jaya Bacchan, who reforms and falls in love with Amitabh Bachchan. A very touching and emotional movie, which still moves me to tears. It had songs like “Maine Pucha Phoolon se” and “Badi sooni sooni hai,” as the most evergreen tracks.
12) Zameer: Amitabh Bacchan, Shammi Kapoor and Saira Banu; A man trying to take advantage of “bachpan me khoya beta,” no, not in Kumbh ka Mela thankfully. A nice family entertainer…”Tum BhiChalo…Hum BhiChalein…ChaltiRahein…Zindagi…….”
13) Warrant: A much-aged Dev Anand with Zeenat Aman – the songs were beautiful and fresh as in any other Dev Anand movie. A total entertainer. Had the song…”Ruk Jaana..O jaana… Humse Do baatein kar te chali jaana ke mausam hai deewana.”
14) Amaanush: Another entertainer with Uttam Kumar,Sharmila Tagore and Utpal Dutta in the lead roles. An all-time favourite of mine.
15) Choti Si Baat: Another film with a message; yet with a lot of humor in it. It had Amol Palekar and Vidya Sinha in it; with Ashok Kumar playing the role of the mentor; and Asrani in “the other man” role. Melodious songs like “Jaaneman..Jaaneman, tere do nayan….”; “Na jaane kyun…hota hai yeh zindagi ke saath…”, were the highlights of the movie.
16) Faraar: A thorough entertainer, with Amitabh Bachchan, Sharmila Tagore and Sanjeev Kumar in it. A beautiful song comes into my mind from this film, “main pyaasa tu sawan.” Amitabh plays the role of a runaway culprit; who hides in Sharmila’s house, his former beloved. A nice murder mystery.
17) Dharmaatma: Feroz Khan, one of the most handsome actors, with Hema Malini, our film industry’s dream girl, and Rekha – a beauty queen…can a man get any luckier.
18) Nishant: An award winning, socially relevant movie, released in 1975. It had ShabanaAzmi, Naseeruddin Shah, GirishKarnad and SmitaPatil in the lead roles. It involved the story regarding social exploitation of women in a village setup. It was packed with powerful performances; and directed by Shyam Benegal.
The list goes on and on…here I have listed my most memorable movies of that year. I love all these movies; having watched them so many times, love the stories, love the solid performances in each and everyone of them and love the songs. Some other movies, not included in the list; yet very entertaining include Chori Mera Kaam, Raani aur Lal Pari, Pratigyaa, Geet Gata Chal, Ek Mahal ho Sapno Ka, among others. Most had R. D Burman as the music director. If you have a look, you will wonder, how could Amitabh Bachchan, Dharmendra, Hema Malini, Sharmila Tagore, Jaya Bachhan have had so many back to back hit movies, with solid performances, all in the same year. Hats off to them. The year 1975 was indeed a boon to the Hindi film industry, it gave us many great films, great songs, and proved to be a bridge between the older and the newer varieties of cinema. It was a memorable year; and set a benchmark for all future movies to come. Hope you enjoyed reading this post as much as I had fun writing it. Do write in your comments regarding this post; if you have any favourites; your likes and your dislikes. Do watch these movies if you have missed any; while I go and revise them again.
Image Sources: Google Sources
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