Saturday, December 19, 2009

The fragrance of Rajnigandha

I bought a VCD of the Hindi film Rajnigandha a couple of weeks ago. This film, directed by Basu Chatterji, was released when I had just entered my teens. We were living in Alwar, Rajasthan at that time. I never got to see the film but it certainly made an impact on me. The beautiful songs, the stunning beauty of Vidya Sinha, the charming boy-next-door hero Amol Palekar along with the artistic looking Dinesh Thakur all added to the beauty of this film.

The film is based on a story Yehi Sach Hai by Mannu Bhandari. It is about the dilemma a young woman faces when she meets an ex-boyfriend and old memories get revived. She is caught between two men who are head over heels in love with her.

The Bengali gentleman Salil Choudhary was the music director of this film. He had also composed the music for the National Award winning Malayalam film Chemmeen. The song Kai Baar Yun Hi Dekha Hai ... sung by Mukesh encapsulates the dilemma so well. It talks of the mind transgressing the boundary line which the mind itself had drawn and flirting with danger. It has been sung so beautifully by Mukesh I am not surprised that it won a national award. I must admit that have listened to this song time and again. The words towards the end are "Kisko meet banaoon, kiski preet bhulaoon?" ("Whom should I make my beloved? Whose love should I forget?" )

Rajnigandha had won the 1974 Filmfare award for the best film. Try to see it if you haven't already seen it.

Writer Mannu Bhandari. [Pic courtesy]

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