A tribute to Sholay that celebrated 40 years and wrote on my other blog. Hence, sharing with you. Timeless and still relevant today, a high octane of entertainment.
It’s Sholay, the Indian western that continue to define the glorious history of Hindi cinema. After all, how can a movie hit the right nail like that!! I must have watched Sholay more than 50 times, no I ain’t kidding! A movie that stays with me forever and still gives me goosebumps even today. A pure tale of masala entertainment with all the right ingredients concocted, Jai-Veeru ki dosti, Basanti and her Tangewali, Thakur and, of Course, Gabbar.
As Sholay celebrates 40 years in cinema, transporting us to the world of Ramgarh, Kitne Admi the aur Maasi being Kabab mein Haddi and Jai spoiling the fun of Veeru, I attempt a tribute to a movie that brought a nation together, relishing the pure magic of cinema and serves as a timeless, great reference point to students of cinema.
Timeless and fresh offering high voltage of entertainment, Sholay remains Hindi cinema’s own unique Western adventure on celluloid. Belonging to a generation that missed the frenzy of the cult movie, I watched it on TV and DVDs on countless occasions and the background music still runs at the back of my mind. It’s still playing havoc right now as I am writing this tribute to the movie that I can watch forever and still not sense a loopholes or dull moment.. It’s cinema extravaganza at its best. Ramesh Sippy got it so perfect and one wouldn’t be wrong to say that the film maker was ahead of its time. It’s the best one can get in terms of entertainment, action, romance, a dreaded villain, talkative village bumpkin aka Basanti and her Tangewali, friendship immortalized by Jai-Veeru-they could have been lovers, silent lovers-Jai and Radha, comedy and romance cum awesome songs.
The movie rolls with Thakur, an upright man but obsessed with revenge for avenging the death of his family by Gabbar, the hunt for Jai-Veeru and of course our own Gabbar, Kitne Aadmi The. Sholay belongs to the masses but also to the classes and what a sacrilege to hear a cinema student tells that he or she never watched Sholay in its entire life. Dharmendra as Veeru defines flamboyance with aplomb as the happy-go-lucky guy, Jai played by Amitabh Bachchan gave the characters unique shades of broodiness and restrained act, making it an impossible task for anyone to emulate him even if they did, they failed miserably albeit to a mediocre level. Hema Malini as Basanti was one character that tickled the heart and one wouldn’t miss watching her antics. She was everything that defines cuteness and endearing, Yoon toh Basanti!!!! Chal Dhano!
Jaya Bhaduri as Radha was the perfect anti-dote to Bachchan’s brooding and angry young man character, silent and yet both of them united by a cursed destiny. The real hero remains Amjad Khan as Gabbar Singh, whom everyone love to hate with equal fervor yet wouldn’t shy to emulate. The grave menace, scary eyes and maniac laugh that would make one craves to be in his place. Of course, off screen. This is cinema to me, powerful act, superb script by Salim-Javed, amazing songs, ‘Yeh Dosti’, Holi Ke Din, ‘Mehbooba’. Master piece par excellence, scorching on screen and a real cinema experience and gem that needs no polishing. It’s a treasure hunt and better let it be buried in Ramgarh.