Illustration: Ramandeep Kaur | ThePrint
Illustration: Ramandeep Kaur | ThePrint


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When one thinks of mainstream Hindi films at present, one notices a definite lack of Muslim characters except the film has some type of a political message. Even in generic romantic comedies or household dramas, the place faith will not be a plot level in any respect, the characters are by no means Muslim, though there isn’t any purpose they couldn’t be. Zoya Akhtar’s Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara (2011) might be a uncommon exception, by which Farhan Akhtar’s Imran simply occurred to be Muslim — no agenda, no message. By and huge, the concept of getting a Muslim lead and even supporting character simply because is one which doesn’t appear to strike filmmakers of at present.

It wasn’t at all times like this. For about 40 years, from Sohrab Modi’s Pukar (1939) about Mughal emperor Jahangir to Muzaffar Ali’s Umrao Jaan (1981) that advised the story of a courtesan, there have been so many films that portrayed totally different facets of Muslim life that movie teachers even got here up with a time period for it — the Muslim social.

These films usually featured a sure mild poetic tradition or tehzeeb, with a liberal sprinkling of Urdu in each dialogue and tune, and with characters carrying gorgeously embroidered ghararas and sherwanis of their properties that featured intricately scalloped  arches and carved screens.

Mehboob Khan’s Najma (1943), M. Sadiq’s Bahu Begum (1967) and Kamal Amrohi’s Pakeezah (1972) are just a few examples of the style. And one can’t discuss of the Muslim social with out speaking about one in all its best examples: Chaudhvin Ka Chand (1960).

Directed by M. Sadiq and produced by Guru Dutt, the film is a component romance, half drama, half tragedy and half comedy, all woven collectively by one leitmotif — that of girls in purdah. Regardless that in some ways it has not aged effectively, it’s a unusually compelling have a look at the totally unusual lives of totally unusual folks. And it has, like all Guru Dutt productions, nice music (courtesy Ravi) and lovely cinematography (V.Okay. Murthy). It’s also a film that arguably pioneered the bro code in Hindi cinema.

Within the week of Guru Dutt’s delivery anniversary, right here’s a flashback to Chaudhvin Ka Chand.


Additionally learn: Sunil Dutt’s one-actor film Yaadein is an oddly apt watch in these remoted occasions

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