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13 October 2011

Sholay (1975)

Directed by: Ramesh Sippy
Written by: Salim-Javed
Music: RD Burman
Starring: Dharmendra, Sanjeev Kumar, Hema Malini, Amitabh Bachchan, Jaya Bhaduri, 
AK Hangal, Asrani, Jagdeep, Sachin, MacMohan, Helen
What can I say about Sholay that hasn’t been said (or written) before? How do you review a film that has been dissected and analysed within an inch of its length? Everyone knows the story, and probably can recite it backwards. Javed says quite honestly that it was a four-line idea that they (Salim and he) developed into a whole script.

The fact that a multi-starrer had such well-etched roles for everybody was a surprise, though. Because it was not just the five main characters who are noteworthy; there was a host of minor characters: mausi (Leela Mishra), angrez zamaane ka jailor (Asrani), Haririam nai (Keshto) who is the stool pigeon, the imam saahib (AK Hangal), Samba (MacMohan), Kaalia (Viju Khote), Surma Bhopali (Jagdeep), even Dhanno (Basanti’s horse)… can anyone who has seen the film ever forget these characters? 

Today, more than three decades after the film was originally released, it is one of the movies that has withstood the test of time, without seeming dated. And therefore, this will (mostly) be a photo essay of some of my favourite scenes from an all-time favourite film.

1. The fight on the train

The thakur is asking a visitor (a police official) to trace two criminals; when asked why, he narrates his first meeting with them, when he had to take them, by train, to a jail far away. The dacoits attack the train, and the two convicts beg that they be allowed to help. As he lies wounded, they are the ones who fight until the dacoits fall back. Then, instead of escaping, they carry him to the nearest hospital. 

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Why: For the enormous sweep of the shot. It’s one of the best choreographed fight sequences ever shot, and that is saying something today. The dusty, barren land, the horses galloping beside the train, the long shots that showed you the grandeur of the dusty plains and steep ravines.

2. Angrez zamaane ka Jailor
Asrani is a jailor who seems to be dressed up as Hitler. He is gung-ho about discipline but seems to get himself into all sorts of silly situations. I also like that 'For he's a jolly good fellow' is playing the background when he marches up to the prisoners.

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Why: For its sheer absurdity. And for setting the scene for a further comic interlude with the barber who is the jailor’s spy. For the absolutely deadpan expressions on Veeru’s and Jai’s faces as they discuss elaborate escape plots.

3. Soorma Bhopali
When Veeru and Jai jump jail, they go to the lumber trader, who is busy regaling folks with tales of how he had caught the much-wanted goons and handed them over to the police. On and on he rambles, exaggerating his own importance, egged on by Veeru who stands behind him. His expression of terror when he finds out they have been listening to his tall tales? Priceless! 

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Why: For its unintentional humour. I mean, for the humour that is experienced only by us, the audience. The character is in throes of shaking in his shoes.

4. Gabbar Singh 
Gabbar’s men have been run off by Veeru and Jai. As they return crestfallen, their leader is not very happy. He is very soft-spoken, the castigation very quiet that it makes them (and us) jump when he raises his voice in a profanity. 

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Why: For the sheer terror. The introductory scene is fantastic – all you can see are shoe-clad feet and a swinging belt. It is the expression on the faces of Gabbar’s men that makes you sense all is not well.  And his response to their failure? A Russian roulette, and absolute cold-bloodedness. The maniacal laughter at the end? Wow. Just. Wow!

5. After Holi 
Gabbar Singh attacks right in the middle of the Holi celebrations. As Veeru and Jai battle against the bandits, they are furious to see the Thakur take no part in the battle at all, not even to help them when they are in dire straits. While Jai remains the silent partner, the more voluble Veeru castigates him for his cowardice. 

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Why: For its sheer power. It’s an intense sequence – the men have hired to fight for the man whose courage they respect; now that is gone, they want out. The Thakur's backstory is revealed then; and realisation strikes - the Thakur could not have helped even if he wanted to.  

The scene was all the more powerful because of the silence - there is no defence; only a story re-told. It is the wind that blows his shawl off his shoulders. The look on the Thakur’s face, the dawning realisation on that of Veeru’s, the sympathy on Jai's, the silent villagers… perfect!

6. The massacre of the Thakur’s family  

A happy family going about their own business. The elder daughter-in-law cleaning the pulses; the daughter hanging the clothes; the younger son loading a rifle and waiting for his nephew to come along so they can go hunting; aiming at a bird in the sky, and then one single shot – and the man drops. A lone horseman is seen in the distance. Then slowly, one by one, almost for sport, each person, including the child, is slowly dispatched with the same dispassionate approach. 

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Why: For its implied brutality, which is all the more powerful, because the deaths are quiet, almost non-violent. Apart from them all dropping like flies where they stand. And the slow ominous creaking of the swing… chilling!

7. Radha revealing her feelings for Jai
Jai and Veeru learn that the gypsies who supply Gabbar Singh with ammunition have arrived in the village. They sneak in to destroy the supplies; in the skirmish Jai is wounded. Veeru brings him back home and is explaining to the Thakur when Radha comes running, not able to hide her concern, only to come to an abrupt stop when she sees her father-in-law. Not a word is exchanged between her and the Thakur, or between her and Jai. 

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Why: For the romance. Once again, it is a scene without dialogues between Jai and Radha. When Radha sees Jai injured, she cannot help herself. The look on her face when she sees her father-in-law is a mixture of love and concern for Jai, and guilt (for thinking things a widow shouldn’t) – what an actress! What a scene! 

8. Veeru and Basanti  
Basanti is praying at the Shiva temple for a husband worthy of her. Veeru, who is head over heels in love with her, decides to promote his cause, by becoming the lord’s mouthpiece. All is going swimmingly, until Jai pops up to play spoilsport. And then all hell breaks loose as Basanti lets him gives him a tidy earful.

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Why: For the chemistry between the leads. Basanti was as iconic a character as Gabbar Singh. Her non-stop chatter, and her independence made her a unique heroine in the annals of Hindi cinema. She certainly didn’t wait around for the ‘hero’ to rescue her – at least not without making a good attempt at it herself. And she didn’t suffer fools gladly. Watch as she makes short shrift of Veeru after she discovers he is fooling her. 

9. Jai talking to Mausi about Veeru
Having been arm-twisted into interceding on Veeru’s behalf, Jai goes to mausi with a proposal of marriage. And insists that once Veeru gets married, he will get a steady job. Oh, doesn’t he have one now? You see, he loses at cards. Oh, he gambles does he ? Not often; only when he gets drunk. So he drinks? Oh, only when he visits the local prostitute, and is forced to drink. Oh, my, only then? So on, and so forth.

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Why: For the deadpan humour (and sheer spoil-sport-ed-ness); each of Mausi’s accusations is countered by Jai with what seems like a plausible excuse – only the excuse is even more egregious than the original crime. And the climax comes when mausi compliments Jai on being such a good friend to Veeru despite his bad behaviour! Such awesomeness!

10. Veeru’s suicide attempt  
Veeru is in love with Basanti and has arm-twisted Jai into taking his proposal of marriage to her Mausi. Not knowing that Jai has, quite cleverly, derailed his entire marriage by painting him as a dissolute drunkard and gambler. So, Veeru decides to die. Not quietly. But publicly, from the water tower in the middle of the village. After loudly informing everyone within vicinity just why he is doing so. 

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Why this scene: Well, can you imagine Sholay without this scene? If you want any more reasons, for its sheer comic brilliance. And not just because Dharmendra is in top form here with his comic timing, but because his dialogue monologue was spot-on; also because the dialogue between a naive villager and his slightly better informed compatriot (yeh soocaide kya hota hai? Jab angrez log marte hai, toh use soocaide kehte hai) was unintentionally (to them) hilarious; because of Jai’s completely unconcerned way of drinking tea (Saala, nautanki!) and his deadpan answer to Basanti’s frustrated questioning – like the movie, this scene had it all, tuned to perfection!

11. Ahmed’s death and its aftermath 
Ahmed had been sent, against his will, to the city to seek employment. Gabbar had killed him, much like he squashes a fly (that is all that is shown), and now his dead body has come home on his horse. The villagers are beyond anger; they want the thakur to hand his hired goons over to the bandit. Amidst all the accusations and counter accusations the imam says quietly: Jaante ho duniya mein sabse bada bhoj kya hota hai? Baap ke kandhe pe bete ka janaaza. (Do you know the greatest burden in the world? The weight of a son’s funeral bier on a father’s shoulders.)

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Why this scene: For its pathos. For a father’s loss, and his resignation and his courage. It is one of the most effective scenes in the movie. It is the imam’s support *despite* his son’s death that turns the crowd back in favour of the thakur and his men. 

12. Jai’s death  
The battle is won, but the price has been heavy. Jai is fatally wounded, and even as Veeru is crying over him, Jai recalls Veeru saying that Jai would tell stories to his (Veeru’s) hypothetical kids. Now those stories will remain incomplete. Then, slowly, he looks over to where Radha is standing bereft, silent, stoic, and says quietly Yeh kahani bhi adhoori reh gayi. (This story also remains incomplete.) And as they cremate him, Radha quietly closes her windows.

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Why: For its heart-stopping emotion. Jai’s and Radha’s romance has been quiet and short-lived. Jai was planning to talk to the Thakur about marrying Radha; he was also going to go straight. The Thakur had been one step ahead. He had seen his daughter-in-law’s feelings and had spoken to her father about her remarriage. Radha at least knows this. It is that hope that has been taken away from her. Without Jai, that second chance at life and love seems meaningless. Closing that window is symbolic of closing out any more chances at that  happiness. Touching.  Very touching.

Trivia: In an interview with CNN, Amitabh Bachchan had mentioned how there had been talk of changing the ending. Released on Friday, by Saturday Sholay had almost been declared a disaster. The four of them, director Ramesh Sippy, writers Salim Khan and Javed Akhtar and Amitabh Bachchan met to discuss the possible reasons for the failure. And almost decided to go down to Ramnagara (Karnataka) on Sunday to shoot an alternate ending where Jai would live, and settle down with Radha. And everything was set in motion, the units were called, when Ramesh Sippy said, ‘Let’s wait until Sunday and see’. They did, and the whole story took an unexpected turn; history was being made, and everyone (happily) dropped the idea of reshooting the end.

Funnily enough, there *was* another ending to Sholay – not the tame one that we have all seen so far. In the original ending, Thakur Baldev Singh (Sanjeev Kumar) continues to kick Gabbar with his nailed shoes, until he dies – a bloody mess. At the end, the thakur falls to his knees and sobs, crying as he never did even his family was killed. It was cut by the censors who felt that showing a man take the law into his own hands would be sending a wrong message to the viewers. Aaargh!

Apparently, the original ending is available on the Eros DVD now, as a director’s cut.

After the dialogues were written, both Sanjeev Kumar and Amitabh Bachchan wanted to play the role of Gabbar Singh, instead of the roles they were signed on for. Interestingly enough, Amitabh was not even the first choice for the role of Jai. Ramesh Sippy wanted to sign Shatrughan Sinha, but Amitabh lobbied hard for the role, including asking Dharmendra to put in a good word for him. Which the genial Jat did, much to the consternation of Shatrughan Sinha who was a good friend of his.

Amjad Khan was also not the first choice for Gabbar Singh. The role had been offered to Danny Denzongpa, who turned it down because he was busy shooting for Feroze Khan’s Dharmatma. Javed, who had seen Amjad Khan on stage, and had been impressed by his acting abilities had mentioned him as a prospect to Salim. They broached the topic to Ramesh Sippy who called Amjad Khan for a screen test.

Dharmendra, who had begun to romance Hema Malini in real life during the shooting of Seeta aur Geeta, apparently bribed the lightboys to mess up the shots during the shooting of Sholay. Jaya, who had married Amitabh soon after Zanjeer released, was pregnant with Shweta during the shoot.


  1. Umm, that was quick! Here I'm getting ready to go to work, and here you are, tempting me to be late. I loovvved this movie - I loved everything about it. And I wish they HAD shot the alternate ending. I hated Jai dying. (I'd just seen him die in Deewar.)

  2. What a film! What a lovely idea for a 'review'! All those screen caps make me want to take out my copy of Sholay again! Alas, work demands my attention...

    I'd heard about the original ending being a very violent one; I'd also heard about Danny being offered Gabbar Singh's role (that wouldn't have worked, no? Danny seems too sophisticated to play Gabbar); I didn't know that Shatrughan Sinha was supposed to play Jai' role! I feel much the same way I did when you wrote that Deewar was offered to Rajesh Khanna first. Gulp! What's that they say? 'Daane daane par likha hai khane wale ka naam'? Thanks for all the trivia about the films. That's really interesting.

  3. I love the format! Very very nice. I loved all the scenes you listed (heck, I loved every frame of this film) but my absolute favourite is the one where she is running after a little lamb and he picks it up and gives it to her. She smiles, and he looks all embarrassed and sheepish. Cute... :)

  4. Sorry. :) Yes, he seemed to die an awful lot those days, no?

  5. Thanks, Sridhar. Just wanted to do something different. Especially for such an iconic film - else what could I have written about it that wouldn't be the same old things all over again?

    I like these little bits of information too. It's nice to hear the background of the films you liked.

  6. Thanks, Ruhi. I know the scene you mean - it was supremely cute! And I absolutely love the one where he comes riding a buffalo and she cannot hide her smiles. And the way he gets off, and tries to pretend that he wasn't on top of a buffalo just a moment ago!

    I loved the interaction between the two of them - so quiet, so understated.

  7. I did see the alternate ending, and the big difference is the reaction of Thakur after Gabbar dies. That part (Thakur breaking down & Veeru consoling him) was much better than the widely shown ending. The gory death part was OK, but I can (& did) live with the cliched ending of the Indian police showing up.
    As I have said in an earlier comment, this movie belongs in the top 5 all time-all movies Western category, one that would include Unforgiven, Butch Cassidy & the Sundance Kid, and High Noon. It is said to be inspired from The Magnificent Seven, and I personally think it is better (another rare event, actually AB & Salim-Javed with Zanjeer & Sholay seem to have that rare touch in the 70's.)
    And finally, both our children (born in the US) think this is the best & perhaps one of the few BWood movies on par with Hollywood standards. They may not have seen many 50's & 60's BWood classics, but the point is clear.
    Obviously loved the review, and all the tidbits.

  8. Samir, I saw the alternate ending too. I thought it was a much more fitting end to the movie - especially where Sanjeev Kumar breaks down and cries. He never does when he sees the bodies of his family. I could have done without the gory part, because I still flinch from violence. :)

    About it being inspired: Javed (in his interview) says they were inspired by The Magnificent Seven and by all the Sergio Leone movies. For Sholay, all they had was a four-line outline of the plot. Then they developed it into something that was definitely NOT The Magnificent Seven. It was totally original.

    And yes, the AB-Salim-Javed combo was great, wasn't it?

    My older son loves Sholay too - well, he was born in India, but saw Sholay only after we moved here.

  9. Weren't they also inspired - to quite an extent, I would have thought - by Mera Gaon Mera Desh? That shares a lot of similarities with Sholay, too.

    Anu, I love this post. If I included 70s films in my blog, I would never have dared tackle Sholay - too much has been said and written about it, but by using this format - not a review, not a synopsis, but this - you do a great job of giving a personal touch to what makes this such a popular film.

  10. Thanks, Madhu. It didn't make any sense to review a film such as this. I could only have trotted out the same old clich├ęs and it would have meant nothing.

    About the inspiration: Javed was very clear about his and Salim's inspirations. Basically, the 'Westerns' as made famous by Sergio Leone (Javed says (in the book) that Gabbar was based more on the Mexican bandits than a dacoit) and of course, The Magnificent Seven.

    Actcually, here's a book recommendation for you :)
    Talking Films: Javed Akhtar in Conversation with Nasreen Munni Kabir

    It's a very interesting book, more like a long conversation than an interview. Very nice.

  11. Just wanted to come back and say that those screen caps of Jai talking to Mausi? I wanted to reach out and push his hair back from his forehead. (He looked so-o-o cute!)

  12. :) I know just what you mean, Tina. (Don't get me started on how cute I think him!)

  13. The first and last time I saw the film was in the theatres in 1975. I was five! And I can't remember a thing. But I have heard and read about the film so often that I have the feeling I know the film inside out. But I think now it is high time that I watch the film as well.
    Yeh dosti was such a cult song at that time that it was regarded as the highest sign of friendship that you sang it with your friend in our school for years.

  14. I was seven when I saw it. Yeh dosti was our favourite 'picnic' song - you know the day trips schools took you on? To a local zoo or museum or something? We used to yodel this in the bus; totally out of tune. :)

  15. The first movie that I can recall. At Sree Kumar Trivandrum, with the rest of the Boarding school gang, right up there in the second row. I can still remember the little screams that accompanied Gabbar's appearance and his sneer. Also, Anu, thats a lovely, refreshing way to explain the movie. Loved every bit.

  16. Great idea of writing about something that has been written about so much, Anu. Those scenes really show the diversity of the matter contained in the film with all those side and main characters.

    One scene and dialogue which I like in additionis the one when the two are being taken in Basanti's tonga to Thakur's haveli from the station. Her constant chatter and then Amitabh's answer to her comment to Dhrmender 'tum mera naam nahin puchhoge?' (Won't you ask me my name?) And Amitabh says - 'Tumhara naam kya hai Basanti?' ('What's your name Basanti?) LOL!

  17. What's the boarding school thinking of? Taking small itsi-bitsi bachhoos to watch such a film? Whatever happened to Gabbar's boast of beta doodh piyo varna gabbar singh aa jaayega? LOL

    I 'm glad you liked the format, cinematters. Thank you.

  18. Thanks, pacifist. I'd no idea when I started this post this way that the format would be so well-liked. :)

    And yes, Amitabh had some wonderfully deadpan dialogues in this, didn't he? I liked the following scene too, where, after Basanti has driven away, Dharmendra looks at her all goopy-eyed and says Kitni pyari pyari baatein karti hai, na? and Amitabh deadpans Kitni pyari nahin, bahut saari baatein karti hain. Chal! He was quite the spoilsport throughout, wasn't he? :)

  19. Thank you for the book recommendation, Anu! I'll put that into my pile of 'books to be bought' (right now I have a pile of eight books that I need to read before I can even think of buying any more!)

    Oh, I'm not disputing Javed and Salim's inspiration - but I'm a little surprised at the fact that they weren't inspired by Mera Gaon Mera Desh. There are too many similarities between the two films for it to have been mere coincidence. Dharmendra is a reformed crook; he flips a coin to decide his fate; he has, as a mentor, a man who's a cripple (though with only one arm gone, not both). And, of course, there are daakus galore.

    But it might just be coincidence, all of it.

    Now I'm tempted to take out one from my stash of Westerns and rewatch it. :-)

  20. This is quite a nice twist to the film Anu, kudos to you for finding a newer way of presenting a film that has literally been talked to death about! There are so many scenes in this film that never get talked about, some of which you have written about here, thank you for that! The scene where Jai talks to mausi is one of my favourites :) And Sholay was on TV last evening! Saw it for the thousandth time :) Every little character in this film was given so much to do, if you know what I mean. And they have done their parts so well that they have become immortalised. So much so, when we hear "Chun chun ke maaronga" we know it's Dharam's dialogue from Sholay - it's a true epic in that sense. Have you read Anupama Chopra's book on the film? It has a very touching excerpt on Amjad Khan, whose first film (unbelievably!) this was. You MUST read it. :)

  21. Actually, that's one thing I really liked about the script - the part where he dies. It's something you don't want to happen, but it's one of those things that makes the film stay with you even after it's over.
    Apparently there was a lot of upset from the audience over the death scene and many suggested to Sippy that he rewrite it, but he refused to budge or tamper with the end. :)

  22. Thanks, Neha. :) I'm glad it worked out so well. This is a film I totally love! And it's nice to share it with others who love it as much, if not more. I picked up Anupama Chopra's book this time when I was in India. D'you know Amjad Khan never worked with Salim-Javed again?

  23. But it might just be coincidence, all of it.

    LOL. Of course!

    In their defence, (I love playing Devil's advocate!) Jai and Veery are not reformed crooks; they are still out for the main chance; and pardon me, Gabbar Singh is NOT a daku - he's a bandit! Straight from the horse's mouth!


  24. Neha, it was because Sholay originally didn't seem to be going anywhere; and they thought it must be because Amitabh had just died in Deewar, and then he was dying in Sholay (by the way, he promptly died in the next film he did in the same year! Faraar.) so they had a discussion on whether to change the ending or not. But Ramesh Sippy held out for a couple more days and then they didn't have to worry after all... :)

    I didn't like him dying; that had nothing to do with the script, and more to do with me :))

  25. And oh, not having time to read has (unfortunately) not stopped me from buying books that I'd 'like to read some time'. Which means my bookshelves are overflowing - at last count there were some thirty-odd books that have not been touched. Yet. :(

  26. Nope! I didn't know that.. Why is that though?

  27. Hahaha, I know what you mean, I don't think ANYONE liked him dying..

  28. Because, apparently he was the only newcomer, and everyone on the sets (the crew) were worried that he wouldn't be able to perform well.And incidentally, the first couple of days, he mucked up the shots. In the beginning, Salim-Javed were firmly on his side; as days went on and the whispers about his work continued, they began to get worried - after all, they were the ones who had recommended him. So they went to Ramesh Sippy and said that if he (Sippy) felt that Amjad was not what Sippy had in mind, he could replace him. Like all conversations, a garbled version of this must have reached Amjad. He was devastated at what he saw as Salim-Javed's betrayal.

  29. I feel awful even now when I see Deewar, Sholay, Muqaddar ka Sikander etc., and the death scenes roll along.

  30. Oh, how I loved this out of tune singing. I miss that!

  31. I miss my school days! It was such fun to watch a movie and then come back and share the plot and songs with your friends!

  32. Very well written.  Just a slight correction, it was not Dharmendra who got the role for Amit, but it was at the insistence of Salim-Javed that Amit got the part of Jai.  This was clarified by Salim Saab in an interview of his.

  33. Thank you, Altaf.

    About SJ - Amitabh said he had approached Dharmendra, so perhaps the truth lies somewhere in between.

  34. Wonderful blog. Thought you might like to know that "Garden of Evil" (1954) starring Gary Cooper was one of the main inspirations for Sholay. The basic plot was that a woman hires three men to rescue her husband. There is also an instance where two men draw cards in the climax to figure out who stays back to fight with the oncoming enemy. Sergio Leone and his films have surely inspired a lot of the stylized elements of Sholay, but I believe Sergio Leone's influence on Sholay is probably over-estimated. Salim Javed had a lot of influences on their mind when they wrote Sholay, and its to their absolute credit as to how they managed to wonderfully blend everything together. 

    As a parting thought consider the following: Salim Khan says "Creativity is the art of concealing/hiding the source" or something close to that. 

  35.  Neither Javed nor Salim in their many confessions to their source of inspiration ever talked abotu 'Garden of Evil'. I find that interesting. Thanks for that tidbit, Amit.

  36. Hi Anu, I have seen an interview of Salim Khan wherein he specifically mentioned about Garden of Evil being the inspiration for the last scene and also for the "coin flipping" in Sholay.  And yes Amit you are right about the creativity part, actually Salim Saab said "There is no such thing as originality.  Originality is the art of concealing your sourcers."

  37.  Hi Altaf, I didn't say Amit was wrong; I just said I hadn't seen that mentioned anywhere. Thank you for confirming what Amit mentioned, though.

  38. Sholay hasn't aged well at all. I am sorry but Sholy is too looooooonnnngggg!! No one can set through it any more. No one has the time! I have introduced my American born niece and nephew to 70's Bollywood. So far two movies have been their favorite Kaache Daage and Haati mere Saati. Sholay is frankly too long, the story too derivative of 7 Samuri and Butch and Sundance ,the super fake Taaker's arms! The lMuslim kid dying long ,boring subplot ,subpar songs, abrupt shifts in tone and pace,Dharm's pot belly ... Well is that enough ? Ok one more, the long dying scene where Amithabha jerks his body in weird ways. Something he repeated exactly in several movies! The movie should have been edited down to about 2 and 1/2 hours. Similar story was done brilliantly in Mera Gaon Mera Desh. That is Dharmender' best movie.

  39. You can't expect today's kids to be able to sit through a 3-hour long film. As for 'too long', again, if the film is well-made, and Sholay was, and well-acted, and Sholay was, three hours is not too long. Depends on what you are looking for. Sholay was not your cup of tea, and that is fine. But Sholay didn't become a hit because of the hype - for one, the mid-seventies were really not the time for media build-up.

  40. Oh, I'm not gainsaying that (it is long). But there are some films, even today, that run long and that one sits through because it is engrossing. Lagaan from India comes to mind - three hours and 45 minutes, and the last hour being a game of cricket. Il Gattopardo was almost as long, and much slower in pace. Depends on the film, actually. In any case, your opinion is as valid as mine. :)

  41. The issu with some of my favorite Indian movies is the lack of tight editing.ofcourse I understand people expect movies to be long so they feel Pisa visool about it. But as some one who grew up in the west I feel jittery and bored .and the poor makers. They have to come up with a Gone with a wind every time. I recently watched 3idiots and every time I felt the movie started to pick steam either a song or comic sene would slow the movie down. I thought Laagan was ,wait for it ,too long!
    My favorite Indian actor is Kammal Hassan. I think some of his work in Malyalm and Tamil are wonderful but he is too self indulgent as an editor. Most of his works would be world class cinema if he used a real editor. Any way,I will stop but did you know that Farz and Kanoon made more at box office than Shakti. Shakti was such ........opps sorry I think i got possesed by another commentator who irrated you ,sorry.....

  42. Ah, but you see, we are not making movies for western sensibilities. :)

  43. I agree that the subject and the content should be Indian or at least that is why I watch Indian movies. Kammal Hassan's best work are the ones about his region and its particular local culture and mores but editing and making crisp and lean movies are really essential to the art of film making.but I think this issue is clear,we both like good movies . And movies are like any art subjective so we have our preferences .
    However,I am curious what you think of Raj Khosla's work.

  44. Liked his earlier films; like most filmmakers, the creative juices ran dry later.

  45. Ah, but you see, we are not making movies for western sensibilities. :)


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