Friday, September 12, 2008

Finally...Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam



Wow, I'm really, really sorry this post took so long to write! I realize I promised it weeks ago, but school has been a lot more intense this semester than I anticipated...I'm in a whirlwind of nursing exams and papers...my daughter's demanding all my attention and I just can't give it to her right now...all I know is, I need a good Bollywood movie in my life, stat!

And, speaking of a good Bollywood film...Luckily, before school began, I finally sat down to watch Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam, the stirring romance starring Salman Khan, Aishwarya Rai, and Ajay Devgan.



HDDCS is like no other Sanjay Leela Bhansali film. Sure, it starts out a bit like Devdas, but takes such an unexpected turn after intermission that it didn't seem repetitive at all(I realize this was made before Devdas, but it was still nice to see SLB didn't make two films that were too much alike). It's so beautiful, unique, and romantic film that I'm sure I'd like it even more with subsequent viewings.

Nandini (Aishwayra Rai) is the favorite daughter of a well respected classical Indian musician, Pandit Darbar. Being Daddy's Little Girl, she's a bit spoiled, and has always gotten what she wanted. So when an Italian musician named Sameer (Salman Khan)comes to India to train with her father, Nandini throws a little hissy fit because she has to give up her room.

However, when Sameer and Nandini meet, sparks fly.






From their first meeting at the chandelier(one of my favorite scenes),their chemistry is undeniable. One thing is clear--Salman Khan is not afraid to touch Aishwarya Rai! Nor is he intimidated by her beauty. Yes, I know they were involved offscreen as well, and regardless of personal opinions on all of that drama, I still think they deserve full credit for their jodi in this film. Just check out the hauntingly seductive song, "Aankhon Ki Gustakhiyan" (Please also note how hot Salman Khan looks in his outfit. He should dress like this more often, just my opinion).



Anyways, despite how cute Sameer and Nandini are, there's a little bit of a problem-- Sameer has some growing up to do. When Nandini slaps him (it wasn't hard, but she still should have kept her hands to herself), he literally leaves the wedding celebrations to go pout in his room.



Nandini tries to apologize, but he's just as stubborn as she was about giving up her room. She warns him that another man will fall in love with her at the party, but he chooses to sit and sulk instead. And this is first mistake.

Enter Ajay Devgan as Vanraj, the man who does exactly what Nandini warned Sameer against--he falls in love with her on first sight at the wedding. Prior to this film, I'd never seen Ajay onscreen and knew him best as Kajol's real life husband. To be honest, I was a little creeped out by him as he gazed at Nandini from afar. He was totally wrong for her, in my opinion--I was already sold on her ending up with Sameer, despite his immaturity. "Keep dreaming, buddy", I said aloud,"She's already taken!" Since I thought the chances of Vanraj actually winning Nandini over was slim to nil, I relaxed and actually forgot about him for awhile.



Yet as Sameer and Nandini's fate took a turn for the worst, and Vanraj kept popping up in intervals with a marriage proposal he conveyed to Nandini's parents, I realized (to my dismay) that this guy wasn't going anywhere. Sure enough--Sameer was sent packing by intermission and Vanraj married a stoic Nandini, whose heart clearly still belonged to the Italian musician.



As Nandini kept resisting the advances of her new husband, I began to soften to Vanraj. He wasn't so bad, I realized. After all, most men would have sent Nandini home after the first night. But not Vanraj. He just held on to the hope that her heart would change.

(***Some slight spoilers ahead***Sorry, I can't really complete this review without discussing them)

Here's where the film completely took me by surprise. When Vanraj discovers Nandini is in love with Sameer, he does what any husband would probably never do--he accompanies her on a trip to Italy to find her long lost love.

The second half of the film is even more brilliant than the first. For one, its funny--some of the scenes with Vanraj and Nandini on the hunt for Sameer are so ironic they're comical. And Nandini maintains a lost expression on her sad face--one is left to believe she'll literally die without Sameer.



But for me, the best part about the second half is Ajay Devgan. While I started out rooting for Nandini and Sameer, I slowly began to empathize with Vanraj, and then found myself falling in love with his unselfish devotion to his wife. By the end of the film, I realized he loved Nandini in a way Sameer couldn't even begin to understand.

For example, there's a scene where Vanraj and Nandini are waiting for the bus. Vanraj boards and takes a seat, thinking his wife is behind him. But Nandini is lost in her despair and doesn't even notice the bus has left, remaining at the bus stop as her husband rides on. Once Vanraj notices she isn't present, he naturally jumps off the bus, frantically running to locate her. He finds her at the bus stop in the exact same postition as she was when he left, a lost expression on her face. Instead of questioning her about it, he sits down calmly and pretends as if the whole incident never happened, so as not to upset her. Nandini snaps out of her reverie, unaware she's missed anything--and Vanraj casually lets her know the next bus is coming.

There's another scene where the couple go to eat at an Italian restaurant. Nandini sits and sulks, appearing almost ungrateful to her husband and clearly uninterested in eating. When the server asks her what she wants, she shrugs and points to a random item on the menu, sighing heavily. But when the plate arrives (and ends up being a whole octupus on a bed of lettuce), she looks practically sick to her stomach. Vanraj steps in, as a true gentleman, and offers her his own plate.



I couldn't believe how my devotion to the smoking coupling of Nandini and Sameer crumbled on its own shaky ground and allowed me to see the gem of a man Vanraj truly was. I almost felt as if I was Nandini, as if all of her changing emotions were my own. At the end, I literally felt as if the choice between Sameer and Vanraj was mine to make--I was that involved in the film. Hats off to Sanjay Leela Bhansali for making this happen!



Although I loved Sameer, he completely dropped the ball in his relationship with Nandini. He had ample opprotunity to talk to her father and ask for her hand--and let every one of them pass him by. Sameer's immaturity may have been cute in the beginning, but it just didn't hold water when things started to get rough. This is what separated him from Vanraj--he lacked the qualities of a real man who is in love and doesn't want to lose his woman. As a matter of fact, when Nandini's father discovers the truth about their affair, he orders Sameer never to see his daughter again--and Sameer accepts without much complaint. Nandini, on the other hand, was willing to put up a fight to be with Sameer, even straining the solid relationship she previously held with her father. This imbalance between the two helped to make up my mind about which man truly deserved to get the girl--it was Vanraj, hands down.



I'd heard Ajay Devgan was a good actor, but wow, he was superb as Vanraj. I have some of his other films such as "Halla Bol", "Kaal", and "U Me Aur Hum". I haven't gotten around to watching any of them yet, but it'll be interesting for me to compare them and truly form an opinion on him. So far so good--he made an excellent first impression!

I really liked Aishwarya here. Bratty, smug, spoiled, playful...she fits all the shades to Nandini's personality like a glove. I do think she's grown as a performer in many ways since this film, but for the most part, this role couldn't have been more suited for her.



And what is going on with me and Salman Khan? Kuch kuch hota hai, I swear! The guy's growing on me, especially as in this film as the goofy-yet hot-Sameer. I dig this ditzy quality on him, in the same way I liked him as Suraj in the less popular
Hum Tumhare Hain Sanam. Yes, there were moments in the film where his expressions felt really forced (not that I'm any expert, but his reaction when he found out Nandini was in Italy was almost a joke), but overall I loved Sameer's idiosyncrasies.



Some of the other supporting cast members added just the right touch to already amazing film. Nandini's parents epitimized my vision of a healthy marriage (for the most part). They were full of giggles and praise for each other--check out this screen shot of them cracking up hysterically, in bed!



Did I mention that I wish Zohra Sehgal was my grandmother? Every time she's in a film, no matter how small the role, she manages to make me smile. Zohra has a great scene in Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam where she starts to tell Sameer and Nandini the story of her marriage--and catches them being naughty! It's one of the cutest scenes in the entire film.



As in Devdas ("Do you love me?" "Or you could ask me if I breathe"), Sanjay Leela Bhansali has given me yet another line that I can't wait to incorporate into my own life. I love, love, love spicy food and always get flack from those who can't handle it. When Sameer makes a smart remark about Nandini's spicy food, she has a quick response:




As if I needed one more reason to love this film!



© 2008 Nida Nazir
Bitten By Bollywood

35 comments:

ajnabi September 13, 2008 at 9:19 PM  

LOL I finally went ahead and wrote mine up, then posted, only to see that you'd done the same! :-D I am soooo glad I'm not alone in liking the ending. You're the only other person I've read who's said that it ended the way it was "supposed" to--one person I visited even grumped that he felt like he was being given a religious lesson. :-)

theBollywoodFan September 13, 2008 at 10:50 PM  

As much as I appreciate the opposite viewpoint, I really didn't think Sameer was given a fair shot at proving his love. He was a loyal student, so when his mentor gave him a very specific instruction (or command), he did what any loyal student should have done, and paid the price for it. Oh, well...those were the days I actually liked Aishwarya, so I can live with the end now. She didn't deserve Sameer any way :P

I'm kidding, of course. I *love* the movie, as noted here. As you say, the dialogue in HDDCS was phenomenal. And Zohra Sehgal was delightful, as she always is!

I liked Ajay Devgan and Aishwarya in 'Raincoat'. Of his films you have, I liked Halla Bol the most.

Good luck with all you have going on!

Nicki September 14, 2008 at 4:37 AM  

I've debated with others on this film for such a long time. I'm in the Sameer/Nandita club. Of course, I've learn to appreciate someone else's view on Vanraj/Nandita for a few years now.

Most of my Hmong friends *hated* this movie because of the ending. When I first saw it, I didn't like it as much either. However, I do like it for its beauty, songs, and acting.

I'm glad you're seeing the light on Salman! Yah!! You should definitely watch his older films. You can see why I will always have a soft spot for him. I can't wait for you to watch Maine Pyar Kiya.

bollyviewer September 15, 2008 at 12:51 AM  

This was the first interesting movie starring Aishwarya that I saw and have been hooked to her onscreen charm (or lack of it - which is also pretty often!) ever since. I even persuaded family and friends to watch Mistress of Spices in theatre and they still havent forgiven me for that!

I loved the Ajay Devgan part of the movie and really liked the ending though I had some reservations there. The ending should have meant that her love triumphed but it appeared that love diluted strongly with duty carried the day!

Ipshi September 15, 2008 at 8:41 AM  

I loved your review, (as usual) but please for the love of all that is holy, DO NOT WATCH KAAL! it's an apology of a horror movie and has terrible performances, except for 3 5-second performances by tigers!
anyhoo, i loooooooved this movie too and this is a movie where many of us saw beyond ajay devgan's um not-so-pretty exterior. u shud defi see halla bol or even shaheed bhagat singh for more.

Joss,  September 15, 2008 at 12:01 PM  

I'm glad to read your opinions on HDDCS, because it's a film I both love and hate. Well, I shouldn't use such strong language for the childish, muscle-bound, Americanised Salman, but love is definitely what I feel for Ajay's performance. What a true hero! Heroic seems the right word for behaviour that only happens in drama, and would never (as you say) happen in real life. But the selflessness of the Bollywood male is something that has drawn me to many of these films, and this is definitely the ultimate. I'm also thinking of Devdas leading Paro to be wedded to someone else; and Aman Mathur setting his girl up with Rohit Patel; and others...

You have mentioned some lovely scenes, but not, incredibly, my favourite, from any film here. The train scene ... where they embrace to avoid the ticket collector ... and become tangled up with Nandini's necklance (was it her mangal sutra?). So intense, so romantic! How subtle and almost impercptible to her how her love grew through the second half of the film. And thank goodness she finally realised!

Well done for getting this post out, Nida. It sounds like a really busy time, and putting together a review is above and beyond. I enjoyed reading it.

Bollywood Blogger September 15, 2008 at 3:14 PM  

I loved this movie too although I wish she had ended up with Salman. Not in real life though, thank goodness!

Daddy's Girl September 18, 2008 at 5:37 AM  

I love your comments on this film - you've brought a lot of practical insights to it. I loved Ajay's performance in HDDCS - he's the best thing about the movie for me.

bollywoodfoodclub September 19, 2008 at 12:07 AM  

Great job here Nida! That train scene is very HOT! One of my favorite scenes ever in a film. Like theBollywoodFan mentioned, Aish and Ajay are great in Raincoat. And I'm with Daddy's Girl, I think Ajay was the best part of this movie. Also, what's fun about this film is one can go from rooting for Sameer and then later on completely be behind Vanraj, who I think represents true love, since he was trying to bring Nandini to what she wanted. I LOVED that character, and blogged about that aspect here:
http://bollywoodfoodclub.wordpress.com/2008/04/21/pope-benedict-xvis-us-visit-dholi-taro-dhol-baje-from-hum-dil-chuke-de-sanam1999/

All the best!
Sita-ji

Nida September 19, 2008 at 10:40 AM  

Thank you for all of your comments, Everyone! :) Its so fun to discuss this one, because I see there really is a divide over the Nandini/Sameer vs. Nandini/Vanraj coupling.

Ajnabi,
I will be reading yours after I publish this comment--can't wait;)I did like the ending, and I think it was definitely the way things should have been! I loved Sameer with Nandini--and maybe could have even used one more scene between the two of them--but looking at the whole picture, I think Nandini will be happier with Vanraj in the long run (Look at me, I'm talking about them as if they're real people!:) ) P.S. Next time we both have the same film lineup sitting in our queue, we should watch it together at the same time!

Bollywood Fan--Thank you for the good luck wishes! And for your insight--You always make me see things in completely new ways!:) The idea that Sameer obeyed his teacher because he was a loyal student actually makes sense, now that you mention it. But still, why continue to write letters, then? And would giving up the woman you love be worth the honor of your teacher? I realize the Hindu culture may place a higher importance on duty than my Westernized culture (some teens don't even respect their parents, much less their teachers, sadly), but it still seems like such a harsh price to pay. The other thing that bugged me about Sameer's actions was he didn't come looking for Nandini; She had to come to Italy in search of him--and she was the one who got married! If Sameer agreed not to see Nandini out of respect for his teacher, then had a change of heart because he missed her, why didn't he come try to find her and tell her face to face? Maybe because she wasn't writing back? What do you think? Also, why did he take so long to ask her father for permission to court her? He waited until it was too late! What took him so long? I'd love to get your point of view!

Nicki-I can't wait to watch it, either! Sadly, my Bollywood viewing has been put on hold due to school--However, as busy as I am, I am determined to still sneak some watching and posting in from time to time! Can't wait to catch up on my favorite blog reading, including yours! Anyways, as I said in the post, I do love Vanraj (as a character )and am glad he got Nandini because he proved his love for her to me. Still, Salman was hot in this film! I especially liked him in the black and red outfit I commented on before the Youtube segment! He was truly fine looking in that. And he and Nandini were truly one of the hottest couples I've seen! Too bad they'll never work together again (I'm assuming).

Bollyviewer--That's a good way to put it, I think. Sameer and Nandini had amazing chemistry, which I don't think Nandini and Vanraj had. I can see how her love for Vanraj would have appeared "diluted" when held up to those standards. But since real life is more than just that kind of heated chemistry, I bought the ending when thinking about it applying to real life.
That's a great way to explain it, though. I think it sums up why so many people were disappointed with the ending.

Ipshi--Lol. Thank you for the compliment--and for the warning!;) I bought "Kaal" despite major reservations in he midst of an online shopping spree--it was only $2 so I figured what the hey. Well, I probably won't watch it anytime soon, at least, and may not even make it through if its as awful as you say! So funny that you said the tigers had the best performances!:)

Joss-Thank you! I'm glad you enjoyed it--I have so much work to do, but as I said, I'm determined to still find time to post! Writing has become my way to unwind and relaz! Anyways, I have to agree--how could I have forgotten to mention the train scene? It was definitely hot, I think the only moment in the film where Ash and Ajay displayed a sexual chemistry--and it worked, surprisingly (As I said above, Sameer and Nandini were so smokin' hot together that it raised the bar quite high for Vanraj and Nandini). And it was truly meaningful--the necklace getting tangled and such. Thank you for bringing it to much deserved attention! I'm also with you on the Bollywood Hero thing--yep, they're so romantic and thoughtful and selfless! I think the women are so beautiful and alluring, and the men so loving even though they might not always be conventionally attractive(but sometimes are!)--this combination is what really drew me to Bollywood.

Bollywood Blogger--Yes, thank goodness for that! I do wish they had gotten to do more films together, though...selfishly, I would really have liked to watch them onscreen again!

Daddy's Girl--Thank you and thank you for stopping by! Ajay was fantastic--Although I loved Ash and Salman, I agree his performance was the strongest in the film. And so surprised to have liked him since I started out hating him for coming in between Sameer and Nandini!

Sita-ji--Thank you and Thank you for the link! I'll have to read your review and comment as well! You always notice the standout scenes--and the train, as Joss mentioned, was one of the very best ones! I'll have to check out Raincoat-I've never heard of it, but I trust yours and Bollywood Fan's opinions--it will go on my list!:)

Does anybody know if Salman and Aishwarya made any other good films together?

OnCloud9 September 20, 2008 at 6:33 PM  

i fell in love with ajay devgan in this movie and was so happy he got the girl in the end

i remember having a long argument with a friend who thought nandini should have stayed with samir - her true love and that i was being completely old fashioned and preachy by saying vanraj deserved her.

but he did. he fought hard to keep her happy. samir seemed confused to me. especially with him 'i knew you would come. i told my baba that he has to make you come'...HUH? what about being a man and actually making it happen??!

OnCloud9 September 20, 2008 at 6:36 PM  

And i agree - don't watch Kaal...but if you absolutely must - just forward to the parts with John Abraham! ;)

JJC September 21, 2008 at 10:31 PM  

one of the few aishwarya movies i find her tolerable in..shes only as good as her director is.
this is a beautiful,well-made movie. evne though i hate that salman ended up not getting her..i think the ending made the film complete. it sent across a message. happiness shuoldnt be selfishness.

nitin September 24, 2008 at 11:03 AM  

i would strongly recommend you to watch "woh saat din", the second half twist is taken off from there... it has amazing performances by anil kapoor, naseer and padmini kolhapuri... ajay did pretty good but watch naseer in a similar role and enjoy it...

dubbagol October 2, 2008 at 12:10 AM  

Hi,

Waiting for your next review eagerly.

DG
Dubbagol Team

yves October 16, 2008 at 1:42 AM  

Hi Nida,

Thanks to your great review, you had me thrust back a few years now, when I had watched that film, which I had a little forgotten (Ah, my Ash crush!), and that was great!
I was intensely amused at your "living" the film so much: does it bother you to hear that you're the quintessential Bollywood dupe?! What I mean is you react so delightfully in the way the film-makers wants his spectators to react! I especially loved the moment when you started moving away from Salman and got caught in Ajay's web...
Thanks again for this nice moment.
cheers

Anonymous,  October 19, 2008 at 7:38 AM  

yeah iots a great movie. and the only movie when u can see aish and salman together. afterall they will never goin to work together again. but i like the movie for its beautiful story, brillinat cinematography and good songs. and the supporting actors are also good.

well in bollywood movies you willl find less movie which provide space to supporting actors. there are some exceptions like farhan akhatar. . you might have noticed it in movies like dil chahta hei , laKSHYA, don, honeymonn travels pvt ltd and rock on.

now i heard that mr bhansali is goin to remake teh hollywood movie the prestige

Ipshi October 26, 2008 at 7:49 AM  

hey, missing ur reviews... just thought Id drop a line to see how u were faring. hope u had a happy id. wish u a happy diwali too!

BTW my word verification here is POOPP (hehehe, just had to share!)

Nida October 27, 2008 at 9:49 PM  

To everyone-Sorry this took so long to respond to, school has really, really been kicking my tail! It's almost done and I just can't WAIT to get back to blogging...and watching movies!

OnCloud9-Like I said, I loved Sameer and Nandini together, but thought Vanraj the better option for the long run. I agree he seemed so confused sometimes, which was frustrating because I wanted him to get Nandini---at first. He just dragged his feet too long!!And I probably won't be watching "Kaal" anytime soon--it doesn't look too tempting, and your comment just confirms it!lol But if it makes you feel any better, I only paid $2 for it on sale.

Jjc--Interesting about Ash being only as good as her director is! I'm not good at distinguishing the two, but there are some movies I thought she was just plain annoying in! And I agree, I think unselfishness is the best way to experience love.

Nitin--and here I thought the plot twist was so original! I'll have to check out "Woh Saat Din"...I've been meaning to watch a Padmini film!Thank you!

Dubbagol Team--Thank you for checking in! I'll try to get the next review out soon...I don't want to lose any readers!

Yves--"The quintessential Bollywood dupe"--Lol, yep, I guess that is me!:) I love being manipulated by a film...I've always done it, and I think its the best way to really enjoy the experience! Thank you for the nice words.I'm glad you enjoyed the post!

Anonymous--Thank you so much for the recommendations. Aww man, I was hoping there was another Ash and Salman film floating around somewhere, but it sounds from your comment that it is not...:( Boo. Although I can totally understand why...I didn't know Bhansali was going to remake the Prestige---hmm...I was hoping for something original for his next venture!

Ipshi--Happy Id to you as well! Thank you so much for stopping by---Again, I apologize for the delays...sometimes after I finish my homework I just don't even want to look at a computer! ha ha But don't worry...next up is the amazing, wonderful, fabulous "Main Hoon Naa!"

theBollywoodFan November 1, 2008 at 12:36 PM  

Hi Nida: It's been a while, I'm really sorry for my late comment, didn't see this one come through in the feed :( So, first of all, a belated Eid Mubarak and Happy Diwali to you! As for Sameer's motivations in HDDCS, gee, I'm not sure I have answers to your questions. :)

>> why continue to write letters, then?

If I remember the dialogue correctly, I think the instruction from the teacher was that Sameer wouldn't try to 'meet' and 'maintain relations' with Nandini. This was the fee he demanded for his teachings. That's probably why Sameer just wrote to her (although penpals have some relationship, but we can overlook that :P), and wouldn't go visit.


>> but it still seems like such a harsh price to pay.

That it is. The teacher's word is regarded as sacred in many religions (and probably rightfully so, but that's just my take). If we're taught they're second only to parents, that being ignored in the film would be a major violation! So it is.


>> Also, why did he take so long to ask her father for permission to court her? He waited until it was too late! What took him so long?

Right on! This was where he lost her, and I think the system just got the better of him. Remember the concerns Nandini's mother had of his family/background -- Sameer probably figured he wouldn't stand much of a chance any way, LOL. The caste/class issue has always been popular in film, because of its continued prominence in South Asian society.

Cheers!

PS: Good luck with all you've got going!

The Bollywood Lover November 2, 2008 at 6:17 PM  

Hmm... Nice blog and good review. pretty long but good.

Salman and Aishwarya had fallen in love after the film. Hadn't they?

Nida December 4, 2008 at 12:21 PM  

The Bollywood Fan,

Yes, it has been awhile since we've chatted! I've missed our detailed discussions...hope to hear your take on my "Main Hoon Na" soon...and I have a review on "1947-Earth" coming up that I'm sure you'll comment on!:)

Anyways, so the letter thing...hmm. I didn't look at it that way, but makes sense since you brought it up. Still, I think it violated what Nandini's father wanted(as you pointed out) but sort of was Sameer's way to get the best of both worlds on a technicality.

Didn't know that about teachers being regarded close to parents! Interesting, thank you for giving me the insight.

The third point--which you agree with me on--is the clincher, for me. He just waited too long. He missed the boat! I've seen this happen to some of my friends in real life. Again, another aspect of the film that was spot-on.

Nida December 4, 2008 at 12:23 PM  

Bollywood Lover,

Thank you for stopping by! yep, guess my reviews do carry on sometimes!:) But glad you enjoyed and commented nonetheless!

Yep, Salman and Ash got involved supposedly after making the film...it was quite a torrid love affair...do a Google search for it and you'll find a whole bunch of stuff. Crazy!

theBollywoodFan December 6, 2008 at 10:02 PM  

Hi Nida! Headed to the Main Hoon Na post in a few. But we knew ke tum ho na! :) Glad the semester's over. Welcome and well-deserved breaks (with SRK/Aamir films) are difficult to beat, eh?

That's great that you saw 1947 Earth! I hope it was worth it, and shall look forward to your review.

Cheers.

Nida December 7, 2008 at 3:24 PM  

Bollywood Fan,

Thanks for having faith in me!

Yes, 1947 Earth was definitely worth it!! I'll be writing that up after I finish my "Dil Se..." review...I'm kind of stumped on that one.

Will be making my way down to your neck of the woods soon to catch up on some Bollywood Fan blog reading!

Amrita December 8, 2008 at 6:19 AM  

I remember when this movie came out and my best friend and I went to see the "Ash-Salman movie" and came out raving about that "Ash - Ajay Devgan movie". It took us completely by surprise and it totally changes AD's game. Of course now he looks like a manorexic alien but there was a time there when I actually felt excited about his work.

You should see Woh 7 Din, the PPCC just reviewed it the other day.

Nida December 9, 2008 at 1:24 PM  

Amrita,

It's funny how it did that, isn't it? Completely made me switch from rooting for Salman to rooting for Ajay. What a great film it was.

"A manorexic alien"?! LOL---oohh that was too funny! I'll have to check out "Woh 7 Din". I've never heard of it but welcome your (and the PPCC's) reccomendations!

Machu,  April 9, 2009 at 8:17 AM  

Loved your review.

First time when I watched it, I was not sure if I liked it. I have seen it a few times since..particulalry the second half. and I now believe, this movie is a masterpiece.

With the exception of glaringly awful spots (The shooting scene) and Faux Italy, and the goofy Salman, the second half was the work of a genius. I can watch the second half in an endless loop.

Although I am guy, the romance spelled out here was spectacular.

The only other time, I saw such good romance that touched my heart was "Pride and Prejudice" BBC/A&E made for TV version.

and yes, the tram scenen, where gets on it leaving her behind was THE BEST scene/story line in this movie.

The ending, the cab ride and she running upstairs leaving him was absolute fun. Heart breaking.

:)

Anonymous,  May 31, 2009 at 7:58 AM  

I had a very similar viewing experience as you. Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam was my first Hindi movie experience, besides Monsoon Wedding. The entire film is amazing because, as a love triangle, it doesn't intentionally make one man or the other the "bad guy" to make the girl's final decision more convincing to the audience. The two men, upon meeting each other in a church, actually get along and have a great time together!

Another thing is that they don't make Vanraj look like the pathetic husband who devotes everything to his wife, and for a while, receives nothing in return. As a viewer, I have respect for Vanraj because he doesn't play along with Nandini's stubborn games, but helps her come back down to earth when she needs it most.

I can't really ever find the words to explain what this movie is like for me because every viewing is a slightly different experience. I will say, though, the tram scene with Vanraj and Nandini where they are hugging and her jewelry catches on his coat is pretty hot.

Nida June 9, 2009 at 2:21 PM  

Machu--It was such a great film, wasn't it? And thank you for the compliment--and for stopping by! The scenes you've mentioned were fab. I too was enchanted and amazed that the second half was so strong. Sometimes films endure the "curse of the second half" and lose steam after intermission.

Anonymous--What a very thoughtful and honest interpretation for the film! I agree completely, I said in my review that for some reason I felt as if I was the one making the decision for Nandini, though I couldn't put my finger on why. But you've nailed it--it was because the two men were both "real" and both pretty great, and both in love with her. Nice insight on Vanraj's character as well.

h n October 28, 2009 at 2:51 AM  

Thanks again for another great recount of a Hindi movie. I personally found the second part of HDDCS too cheesy, though.

Anyway i really love your review's ending with the two final screens. I think screen captures, subtitles and your words gel well generally and here too.

That's fun reading even though i will definitely only come here *after* seeing the respective movie. Fortunately, in your forays into Bollyland you're far ahead of me so there's ample reason for me to return here.

Anonymous,  February 17, 2010 at 7:34 AM  

PLEASE, I JUST WANTED TO KNOW WHO AMONG THE TWO MEN HAD THE GIRL AT THE END? IS IT SAMEER(SALMAN)THE ITALIAN OR AJAY(VANJAY)THE ADVOCATE?

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