Sonntag, 19. August 2007

Reshma Aur Shera (1971) - Review in English

About the story: Reshma (Waheeda Rehman) and Shera (Sunil Dutt) are from two enemy clans. Therefore their love, initiated during a fair, has no chance. Shera’s arbitrary attempt, against his family’s will, to make peace with the enemy clan at Reshma’s brother’s wedding, fails. The wedding results in a blood-bath. Shera is expelled from his clan and suddenly finds himself in the need to fight his own family. To stop Shera’s furious hatred, Reshma picks up the courage to take an unusual step...

For Sanjay fans, Reshma Aur Shera primarily is a document as it was the film debut of twelve-year-old Sanjay Dutt. He made a short appearance as a Qawwali chorus singer, for which the son of producer and director Sunil Dutt even was named in the credits as "Master Sanjay Dutt". The scene itself is really funny (sorry, Sanju, you know I love you...). Obviously his directing father had told him to just smile and clap rhythmically. The smiling was no problem, but the clapping... okay, it was a first try. Forgiven and forgotten.

But Reshma Aur Shera is more than just Sanjay’s film debut. It is a very strong film giving the popular issue "children from enemy clans try to finish the enmity through their love" a surprisingly new twist. The film features besides Sunil Dutt and impressive Waheeda Rehman even a very young Amitabh Bachchan in a mute but expressive role. A little annoying is the actors’ sometimes extreme slow and pathetic mode of speaking, but the good and in strong pictures (especially in the desert) filmed story compensates for that.

It is said that the film originally was twenty minutes longer than the version released on DVD by GVI and Baba. And indeed you miss some sequences which are crucial for the story. They are recapitulated later, but they are not shown which is quite confusing for the viewer. And annoying.

Produced and directed by Sunil Dutt
137 Min.; DVD: GVI, English Subtitles (including songs), unfortunately not always punctual
© Diwali

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