Suresh Sinha, a famous film director, discovers star potential in Shanti, a woman he stumbled into one rainy evening, and casts her as the lead in his new production. In a twist of fate, Shanti becomes a superstar while Suresh faces oblivion.
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An epic lament on the artist's martyrdom told in bold melodramatic style and generous episodes of love's motility and ultimate repose in nothingness. If the death/rebirth cycle is less poetic than "Pyaasa" it is no less moving as the star declines beyond recognition and his muse obstructed by social forces beyond her control. The songs are marvellous (e.g. the numerical one in the open-air school) and Rehman glows.
Splendide et déchirant mélodrame, fortement teinté de notations anecdotiques, autobiographiques, qui reste une référence incontournable avec l'œuvre précédente du réalisateur, d'une certaine perfection cinématographique, par l'intuitif et subtil agencement d'une dramaturgie individuelle confrontée à un environnement hostile parfaitement mis en évidence dans cette étonnante maîtrise du filmage.
Uau! Just saw this one. It is definitely a peak in cinema but it is impossible not be reminded of Minnelli's The Bad and Beautiful, another outstanding masterpiece, which not only have similar looks but also an identical spiral into madness.
Perhaps the most impressive aspect of Dutt's work is his ability to reconcile popular genres with unpopular protagonists; martyrs railing against everything wrong with society while singing the catchiest of tunes, framed by an artistic vision so uncompromising that the strain arguably contributed to Dutt's suicide. Hard to find a more tragic instance of life mirroring movies than this and his other great film, Pyaasa
Strange that this film (and others) prefigured Guru's own life in so many ways, given the self-conscious way in which it was written, as if he wished to end in ruin and tragic misfortune. If he had really known the powers he possessed over his own fate, perhaps he (as the protagonist) would have at least kissed her. Why he doesn't is a mystery to me, in any case.
Marvelous scene by scene development of the story to present artistic vision by Guru Dutt. The film is flawless. Its a pity that it did not do well on box office. I can’t remember many tragedy movies doing well on box office in India although some crime based movies do well. It is also shame that Indian cinema did not progress much after such remarkable achievements several decades ago.