Sonntag, 19. August 2007

Vidhaata (1982) - Review in English

About the story: The engine driver Shamsher Singh’s (Dilip Kumar) domestic happiness is destroyed completely when his son, inspector Pratap Singh (Suresh Oberoi), is murdered by gangster boss Jagavar Chowdhary (Amrish Puri), and Pratap’s wife dies in birth of her son Kunal. Disillusioned, Shamsher now takes his destiny in his own hands. He works for the rich smuggler Mizia, inherits after Mizia’s death his syndicate and, under the name of Sobhraj, becomes a mighty don. As he doesn’t want his grandson to grow up in a world of crime, he entrusts Kunal to the ex-cop Abu Baba (Sanjeev Kumar) who teaches the boy all his good values. Neither Abu Baba nor Kunal know about Shamsher’s identity as a don. As a grown-up, Kunal (Sanjay Dutt) returns to his grandfather but he soon realizes that Shamsher’s world is not his world. Shamsher doesn’t accept Kunal’s love with the poor dancer Durga (Padmini Kolhapure), and not even Shamsher’s old friend Gurubaksh (Shammi Kapoor) can convince him to give the couple his blessings. When Abu Baba meanwhile gets on to the tracks of the Mizia Trust and therefore is killed, Kunal vows vengeance to the murderers, including the syndicate’s boss who is still unknown to him...

Vidhaata is a good generation movie which towards the end just grows more and more gripping. The story is strong and free from trash, and it should be interesting not just for Sanjay fans, because in his second film after Rocky (I’m not counting in Reshma Aur Shera) Sanjay in no way plays the lead but just one among many, and his experienced co-stars Dilip Kumar, Sanjeev Kumar, Amrish Puri and fabulous Shammi Kapoor with their concentrated presence are showing to the newcomer that he still had some limits to hurdle.

But supposedly it was just this massive acting challenge which inspired Sanjay to some good scenes which are pointing forward to what should become one of his biggest strengths in front of the camera: his uncompromising emotionality. He gives free reign to his grieve over his foster-father’s death as well as to his rebellious anger on his grandfather. Okay, he still could not maintain this level throughout the whole film, but for those who want to see Sanjay in one of his very first movies, Vidhaata is in any case the better alternative than Rocky.

Produced by Gulshan Rai; Directed by Subhash Ghai
170 Min.; DVD: Eros, English Subtitles (not for the songs)
© Diwali

P.S. The Shemaroo DVD is of much better quality than Eros. The image quality is better, and the songs have subtitles. Moreover, the running time on Shemaroo is seven minutes longer than on Eros.

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