One of the top 100 movies of all times…

Most of us love Johnny Walker, and we love to hum that famous song “Sar jo tera chakraye” , which is also a hot favourite at every nai ki dukan while the barber gives a oil laden head massage. I am sure atleast the guys know what I am talking about.

But what I am going to tell you are some tidbits about the movie that this song belongs to – Pyaasa. I love this film because it really is different. About a struggling poet, whose passion is to write about the difficulties of a post-independent India, Pyaasa was rated as one of the best 100 movies in 2005 by Time Magazine.

Gurudutt had asked Dilip Kumar to play the lead role in this drama,  since Kumar was the tragedy king of those times, but he refused. In the end, Dutt decided to act as the lead hero.

Following the commercial success of this unusual film, Guru Dutt made another similar movie, Kaagaz Ke Phool on a larger budget, but sadly, this one flopped miserably. Funnily enough, though, it went on to be a hit long after Guru Dutt’s death. One of those unsolvable mysteries of Bollywood.

The bit about Waheeda Rehman, who plays Gulabo, a prostitue, is based on a true incident. The writer, Abrar Alvi, had visited Mumbai’s red light area and met a woman who called herself Gulabo. She thanked him for treating her with respect in a place where she had only been treated as dirt. Infact, he used those exact words as Waheeda’s dialogue in the movie.

Another interesting piece of information – Guru Dutt wanted to shoot some scenes in Kolkata, but during the time, they were attacked by a group of pimps. But Dutt was so adamant about having Kolkata as the background, he recreated the sets using photographs taken in Kolkata. Talk about being particular!

11 thoughts on “One of the top 100 movies of all times…

  1. Interesting read, Neha. Infact it is also rumoured that Pyaasa is loosely based on Sahir Ludhianvi’s real life, his struggles and how he never got recognition initially. Also this also I think last film where Sahir and S D Burman worked together.

    Many more to write about this classic and who can forget the lines “yeh duniya agar mil bhi jaye toh kya” , the line which even after decades inspires people to even make films.

    The name of Guru Dutt in this film, “Vijay” was again immortalised for years to come especially by Big B.

    Loved reading about it and this film according to me is one of the best indian films. 😀

    • Thanks for the added bit of info shyaam 🙂 actually i found it already but i didn’t put it deliberately thinking it might be a bit of over load for some 🙂

  2. Hey… I think there’s more to the story about how Gurudutt ended up playing this part. Dilip Kumar had apparently signed up or the movie but on the muhurat day he didn’t trun up for hours. Finally out of frustration Gurudutt went and sat on the chair to be occupied by the main lead in the muhurat shot. I’d heard this bit of trivia at a screening of Pyaasa by a film society… do look it up…

  3. Hey Neha, Wow, I dont think I ever watched an old hindi black and white movie. Reading ur blog and the interesting trivia about them, I guess I’ll go watch my first… You’ve sure made them look interesting!

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