Sonntag, 19. August 2007

Zameen Aasman (1984) - Review in English

About the story: The love story between Sanjay (Sanjay Dutt) and Anita (Anita Raaj) starts in the strangest ways: Firstly, she pours coffee over his suit, secondly, she causes a rear-shunt with his car, and finally she collides with him while roller-skating. Initially Sanju is more than upset about this "stupid girl", but gradually the whole issue amuses him, and soon Sanju and Anita are unseparable. Anita’s aunt, Dr Kanchan Gupta (Rekha), is very fond of Sanju, and Sanju’s mother Kavita (Rakhee Gulzar), widow of the physician Dr Kailash Goyal (Shashi Kapoor) who died with an accident, approves of Anita. But when Kavita wants to talk to Anita’s father about the marriage, she faces the doctor who years ago had had to tell her that she never could have children. As she insists on Sanju being her son, Anita’s father therefore doesn’t believe her and, taking Sanju for a bastard, rejects the bonding between Anita and Sanju. The lovers decide to elope and to marry secretly. As Kanchan tries to conciliate, Sanju discovers a photo of his late father in Kanchan's flat...

The film may begin with Sanjay’s and Anita’s love story but it soon leads to the triangle story Rekha-Shashi-Rakhee which is the film’s central motive. Whereas Shashi Kapoor appears only in flashbacks, like a supporting character necessary for the plot, the central characters are Rakhee Gulzar’s and Rekha’s. The two actresses create in the scenes they share together a tension like the two famous enemy queens Elizabeth I and Mary Stuart. Rakhee has in this stride the more ungrateful role of the wife who takes away the illegitimate child from her rival, but Rakhee comes fairly by her task and surprises with nuances of expression she otherwise rarely shows. But the film’s true heroine is Rekha who not only has to abandone her beloved and her child but even gets convicted for murder and is permitted to leave prison only for the final scene which moves to tears. Rekha acts intensely and convincingly and, like Rakhee too, makes no visible attempt to outplay her antagonist which benefits the plot very much.

Sanjay and Anita fit beautifully into the story and do more than just good support. Anita Raaj comes across as mature and juvenile at the same time and assorts well with Sanjay (as well as shortly thereafter in Mera Haque). Sanjay "what the hell", who catches your eye with a terrific wardrobe range (from classical suit to colourful jumpers and from disco outfit to skintight jeans shorts), this time coped better with his drug addiction than at the same time in Mera Faisla; nevertheless his temperament and his presence go roller coaster: Partially he is top, e.g. in the first quarter of an hour with his tirades against Anita and a gorgeous mimic, but in between again there are scenes where he seems to be just not involved. And sorry, I will never understand why he had to expose himself topless though he was putting on weight at that time. I simply don’t get it.

All in all, Sanjay’s performance in Zameen Aasman is okay. But honestly, even back then this role, where he primarily had to be just a nice young chap, was no big challenge for him. At most the dance scenes might have caused him some endeavour, as he had to master classical standard dance as well as hot disco dances. For like in Rocky, Sanjay once more goes John Travolta. Kind regards from Saturday Night Fever. *g*

Produced by Subhash Gupta & Uday Narayan Singh; Directed by Bharat Rungachary
147 Min.; DVD: Moviebox, English Subtitles (including songs)
© Diwali

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