Monday, September 26, 2011

12 O'Clock


Have you ever heard of anything called Duology? Neither have I. 
So, to complete the Trilogy of Bollywood quizzes, here is my third instalment.
The title of the post is taken from a Guru Dutt-Waheeda Rehman starrer, with an OP Nayyar soundtrack (including the song Tum jo hue mere humsafar...)

1.      In Omkara, every character was named with the same initial as their original name in the play (Othello = Omkara, Desdemona = Dolly, Cassio = Kesu etc) – except one. Then why did Iago become Langda Tyagi?
2.      Which film is the famous pose of RK Studio’s logo taken from?
3.      Who played Murarilal in Anand?
4.      To which two people was the film Johnny Gaddaar dedicated?
5.      Which film was advertised as ‘Ageless as Asia, Exciting as Europe’?
6.      In Bluffmaster, what was the number of the taxi Abhishek Bachchan used to chase a thief stealing his car?
7.      In the film Traffic Signal, in which year Kunal Khemu’s character born?
8.      Between which two stations was the ‘1:40 ka Last Local’ supposed to ply?
9.      In how many films have Amitabh Bachchan and Rakesh Roshan appeared together?
10.  From which state was Anamika Kapoor’s brother selected for the National Swimming Championship?
11.  In which of his films has Yash Chopra made an on-screen appearance?
12.   Of the films whose titles have been taken from songs of other films (e.g. Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge, taken from Chor Machaye Shor), which is the first to have a Filmfare award for Best Film?

ANSWERS 
1.  His name was indeed Ishwar Tyagi. In the film, Vivek Oberoi called him 'Issu-bhaiya' and the end-credits mentioned it as well.
2. Barsaat was the film with the wilting Nargis and tilting Raj Kapoor.
3. No-one. Asit Sen, Johnny Walker and an unknown soul were charged with 'Qutab Minar pe beer pilake out kar diya tha...' but they were not guilty.
4. Vijay Anand and James Hadlee Chase. The former's famous film name was borrowed while Neil Nitin Mukesh read the latter's book in the film.
5. Sangam - Raj Kapoor's pan-European, Eastmancolour masterpiece.
6. The taxi was indeed the one driven by Nana Patekar in Sippy Films' next venture - 9211.
7. Kunal Khemu's character was called Silsila because he was born in 1981, when the film released.
8. Kalyan to Kurla, shown on the train quite well. 
9. They have done each other a good turn and appeared as a guest in the other's films. AB was a guest in Preeti Ganguly's dreams in Khatta Meetha while RR was a guest in the John Jaani Janardhan song of Naseeb.  Nobody has got this one.
10. Anamika Kapoor told us the story of her brother, Nikhil - who represented Goa in swimming.
11. Yash and Pamela Chopra appeared as a love-struck couple in the opening credits of Dil To Paagal Hain.
12. Hum Hain Raahi Pyaar Ke is the first, beating DDLJ by a couple of years. And Maine Pyar Kiya can hardly be a unique song line, no?


SCORES
Abhishek Mukherjee scores 10.5 and makes it bit of an no-contest. I think I will give him a Lifetime Achievement award and bar him from participating.
Tejaswi - 1.
BollywoodDeewana - 7.
Shazia - 4.
Ketan - 2.
HijiBijBij - 2.
Ilina - 3
Sumit - 4.
Kunal Mistry - 2
Pallavi - 4
Sandeep Padia - 2.
Bits of Chocolate - 3
Amit - 8. 
Sudeshna - 1
M - 7.
Last Anon - 2.

All in all, a fantastic participation this time. Almost all the readers of this blog participated!
Normal programming will resume soon. Coming up: Random Movies I Like: Toofan!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Do Aankhen Barah Prashna

Taking a lesson from the fantastically bad response to the previous quiz (some 5 people participated), I have decided to do a couple more!
Now, the idea is to keep coming up with answers will people will either be able to guess or be able to remember from one fun Sunday afternoon screening on Zee Cinema. Either way, the answer should have a surprise value.
So, here is my second quiz instalment - 12 questions, answers to most of which can be found in a book on Bollywood to be released next year (ahem).

1.      Amitabh Bachchan was the first recipient of the Filmfare Lifetime Achievement Award. Who gave him the prize?
2.      Which film inaugurated the transmission of colour programming on Doordarshan?
3.      Which was the last film to give joint writing credits to Salim-Javed?
4.      In which film did Amitabh Bachchan play a motor mechanic, Vinod Khanna a police officer, Sanjeev Kumar a doctor and Mehmood a rickshaw-puller?
5.      In which film did Remo Fernandes make his screen debut?
6.      Who played Sheroo ki Maa in Sholay?
7.      What was the name of Amitabh Bachchan’s restaurant in Cheeni Kum?
8.      Who was the highest goal-scorer in the Women’s Hockey World Championship in Chak De India?
9.      Who wrote the story and screenplay for Bimal Roy’s Madhumati?
10.  What was Amitabh’s name in Aaj ka Arjun? (Helpful advice: The name they mention on IMDb is not what they call him in the movie.)
11.  Which actor dubbed for Prabhu Deva in Sapnay?
12.  What is common to Kabhi Kabhie, Anand, Manzil and Baghban – apart from being Amitabh Bachchan films? 

So, what are you waiting for? Let's go!
Moving house over the weekend. Answers likely to be on Monday!

ANSWERS:
1. Amitabh Bachchan was the first winner of the Raj Kapoor Award for Lifetime Achievement - which was handed over to him by another 'lifetime achiever' - Sunil Gavaskar.
2. Sadgati was the film specially made for the inauguration, though Shatranj Ke Khiladi was also shown on the same day.
3. I meant, Hindi film and without Googling. Since Don 2 is yet to release, the last film to give joint credits to Salim-Javed is still - quite tragically - Ramgopal Verma ki Aag (which rhymes with Bhaag DK Bose Bhaag).
Mr India, indeed, is the last film they wrote together but not the last they got credits for (1/2 points for this).
4. The star-studded film is Mehmood-directed Kunwara Baap. Dharmendra and Hema Malini also appear in the film (among the many others, whom I have probably forgotten).
5. Shyam Benegal's Trikaal had a slinky Remo as a wedding singer in the Portugese mansion. Do you remember who his singing partner was?
6. Simplest of the lot... Veeru's would-be wife is also Sheru's would-be mother.
7. Spice 6.
8. Preeti Sabharwal.
9. Ritwik Ghatak.
10. Bheema, it is. Where did Bhim Singh come from, IMDb?
11. Nobody got this... Javed Jaffrey was the voice behind the rubber-body.
12. They are all books written by Amitabh Bachchan. Does anybody know the film in which AB wrote the book 'Manzil'?

SCORES:
Khalil Sawant - 1
Rahul - 3.5 (0.5 for not remembering Preeti Sabharwal's name but describing her)
Kunal Mistry - 1
Abhishek Mukherjee - 9
Anonymous - 1
Amit - 5.5 (0.5 points docked for saying AB wrote a book in each film. He didn't write one in Manzil!)
Nilendu - 2.5 (does spectacularly badly and is recommended that he buys 10 copies of the book he almost co-wrote!)

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Bollywood ka Board Exams

I am very excited because a new Bollywood quiz show called Extraa Shots Challenge is coming up from tomorrow on SET Max. It calls itself Bollywood ka Board Exams.
A couple of years back, there was Bollywood ka Boss on Filmy for which I framed some questions. SET Max is watched more as a channel and so hopefully, ESC will go on to become the KBC of Bollywood quizzes, make Divya Dutta a huge star and light up my Sunday evenings.

So, to celebrate this new quiz show, I am thulping 18 questions. And in true Board Exam style, some are MCQ and some open-ended.
Post the answers in the comments (which are moderated for the time-being). The answers and winners will be revealed on Tuesday (20th).
One second... why 18? Because it is 18th September! Happy? Now, answer the questions.
Aur asli mard ke do pehchaan hota hain. Uska dard nahin hota aur woh answers ke liye Google nahin karta! (The ladies are too honourable to be told about this also!)

  1. Who was the first recipient of the National Award for Best Child Artiste given in 1970?
  2. What is common between Mallika Sarabhai, Neena Gupta, Rupa Ganguly and Satish Shah?
  3. What was the name of the business Saif’s family owned in Kal Ho Na Ho?
  4. Which film had lead characters by the name of Siddharth Marathe and Alisha Mafatlal?
  5. What is the name of the book written by PWD Engineer Satyaveer Singh?
  6. In which film does Advocate Dhingra defend Javed Shaikh, Kaviraj Patil and SS Khan?
  7. What was the name of the film in Rangeela which Urmila Matondkar was starring in?
  8. Which famous film personality was the Assistant Director to Mahesh Bhatt in Saaransh?
  9. In Karma, what was Dr Dang’s first name?

  1. Which of the following playback singers do NOT have a hat-trick in winning Filmfare awards?
1.      Kavita Krishnamurthy
2.      Alka Yagnik
3.      Asha Bhonsle
4.      Lata Mangeshkar

  1. Which is the first film with an English name to have won a Filmfare Award for Best Film?
1.      Guide
2.      Black
3.      Boot Polish
4.      Mother India

  1. Who was the lead pair of the film Roop Ki Rani Choron Ka Raja released in 1961?
1.      Dev Anand – Waheeda Rehman
2.      Shammi Kapoor – Asha Parekh
3.      Kishore Kumar - Madhubala
4.      Raj Kapoor - Nargis

  1. Which is the first film Amitabh Bachchan and Jaya Bhaduri appeared in?
1.      Guddi
2.      Ek Nazar
3.      Bansi Birju
4.      Anamika

  1. For which of the following stars has Narain Karthikeyan been the stunt driver?
1.      SRK in Baazigar
2.      Saif Ali Khan in Tara Rum Pum
3.      Aamir Khan in Baazi
4.      Akshay Kumar in International Khiladi

  1. What is common to the Assistant Directors of Swades, Saathiya and Monsoon Wedding?
1.      They have all gone on to win Best Debut Filmfare Awards
2.      They are all FTII Gold-Medallists
3.      They are all related to Aamir Khan
4.      They are all related to the directors

  1. Which of the following statements are NOT true about Sanjay Dutt and Amitabh Bachchan?
1.      They have acted in movies containing the word ‘Shabd’
2.      They have won the Booker Prize on screen
3.      They have played relatives of Abhishek Bachchan
4.      None of the above

  1. In which Mahesh Bhatt film did Kunal Khemu first appear on screen?
1. Zakhm
2. Naaraaz
3. Hum Hain Rahi Pyaar Ke
4. Sir
  1. Which of the following heroines is NOT one of the Teen Deviyaan?
1. Babita
2.  Nanda
3.  Kalpana
4.  Simi Garewal

ANSWERS
1. This is a double-barreled question, which got edited and became wrong. So, I have simply removed the 'first' and made it correct. The first ever recipient of the Best Child Artiste award was Kamala Haasan and the first time an Hindi artiste won it was in 1970 - Rishi Kapoor for Mera Naam Joker.

2. All these talented people have played Draupadi.

3. Dial a Dhokhla

4. Ghulam.

5. The name of the book is Manorama. The answer 'Something to do with Manorama Six Feet Under' does not count :-)

6. Shootout at Lokhandwala.

7. Simple... The name of the film within film is also Rangeela.

8. Sooraj Barjatya (since Rajshri Films was the producer). Rumour has it that Rajshri was unhappy with Mahesh Bhatt's choice for the lead role and tried to push Sanjeev Kumar instead. Legend has it the original choice came to Bhatt's house and created a scene that eventually became the last outburst in the Chief Minister's cabin in the film.

9. Michael.

10. Quite surprisingly, Lata Mangeshkar has never had a hat-trick. Probably because in the early days of the awards, there was only one category of playback singing for both male and female.

11.  Boot Polish won the second ever Filmfare award for Best Film and became the first 'English' name.

12.  Either you know it or you don't. Dev Anand and Waheeda Rehman, it is!

13. Guddi. In Jaya's first film, Amitabh appeared for a second or two as a filmstar shooting a scene.

14. This story might be apocryphal because Narain Karthikeyan was only 16 when Baazigar was being shot.

15. Strictly speaking, both 3 and 4 are correct. Kiran Rao was the AD in all these films and so, she is related to Aamir Khan (who's also a director). And if she wins an award for Dhobi Ghat, then Option 1 will become correct as well.

16. None of them are false.

17. Sir, it is. Kunal Khemu played Naseeruddin Shah's son who was killed in a crossfire between gangs.

18. Babita is not one of the Teen Devis. I happily added a Kartik to Kalpana - because I never knew that they were two different people!  

PARTICIPANTS:
Thanks to all who caught mistakes and typos!
Korak got only one but was the first to comment.
Bricks got 14 including 3 confessed Googles.
Abhishek Mukherjee got 17.
Shazia got 3.
Nagesh got 7.
Divya got 14.

Some more coming up later this week! 

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Random Movies I Like: Hero


Long before Subhash Ghai fell to the lure of ticket prices in dollars, he made bloody entertaining movies. Epic tales of love and revenge seared across 70 mm screens to the accompaniment of loud, hummable music from Laxmikant Pyarelal. I mention LP here because – coincidentally or otherwise – Ghai lost his touch when he shifted composers to Nadeem-Shravan or even AR Rehman.

The first film he produced exemplified his brand of filmmaking that was so entertaining that it did not need stars to pull off.
Hero starred an unkempt Jackie Shroff (in his first leading role) and a kempt Meenakshi Sheshadri (in her second leading role) in a film that was packed with stars character artistes – Shammi Kapoor (as the stern patriarch), Sanjeev Kumar (as the poetically-inclined comical police officer), Bindu (as the sex-obsessed widowed bua), Shakti Kapoor (as a second villain), Madan Puri (as the good Punjabi Samaritan) and – above all – Amrish Puri. Even Manek Irani – the standard issue side-villain appearing in the first-fight-to-establish-hero – was also there.
There was also Subhash Ghai, who made his first cameo-as-prerogative-of-director appearance in Hero and continued to appear in subsequent films – always looking bewildered, usually mouthing inane choruses in songs!

Pasha (Amrish Puri) is likely to get hanged due to a testimony from Commissioner Mathur (Shammi Kapoor). He gets this trusted henchman, Jackie, to kidnap Commissioner’s daughter to use her as leverage. Needless to say, they fall in love – thus running afoul of both Amrish and Shammi – and that populates the first half. The whole process of Jackie’s reform to become Jaikishan and win his lady love back formed the other half of the movie.  
The movie is an IIMA case study of the phrase 'paisa vasool' - song, dance, action, reaction, melodrama, not-so-mellow drama, comedy, tragedy, deewana, parwana, falaana, dhimkana

Firstly, the music is kick-ass.
There was the completely inane Ding dong, O baby sing a song, SING A SONG (Ghai in faux-baritone). Sung on bikes, filmed on helicopters, it had four characters whose initials were Sa, Re, Ga and Ma.
Then, there was Nindiya se jaagi bahaar – with Meenakshi cavorting under a waterfall and Jackie looking game for a bath himself.
The title song was vintage LP and vintage Subhash Ghai – pulling out all stops as Meenakshi declared Tu mera hero hain while Jackie ruefully admitted Prem granth ke panno par apni taqdeer toh zero hain!
There was a ‘sad song of separation’ – Lambi judaai (which always got mispronounced in engineering colleges)
And there was the Hero flute theme. That got introduced when villainous king-pin Pasha promised an impoverished flute-seller lots of money if he played well. When he collapsed in an asthmatic attack, his son picked up the baton and played on. The father died, son cried and – instead of Inky Pinky Ponky – became a criminal under the evil influence of Pasha ki Bhasha.  

And as Pasha ki Bhasha indicates, Amrish Puri – in his prime – was a villain like no other. A good villain – complete with outlandish costume, bad wig, menacing mannerisms and an elaborate den – can lift a movie many notches. In these days of missing villains and wimpy Chhedi Singhs, we seem to have forgotten that.
Shakti Kapoor went from an innocent NRI to a cocaine-snorting pervert in a flash, with only a brief stop as a world-class sport-biker!
Even Billa – the muscle-bound, goofy-grinning punter – who got beaten up in the first scene to establish Jackie-dada as a Robin Hood was one menacing bugger. He returned later to thulp Jaikishan and caused serious damage.
If you must know, Jackie was marrying off a wimpy Bengali school-teacher against the wishes of the bride’s family. *Note to self: Write an Open Letter to a Punjabi Filmmaker*

It had rocking action – without CGI to flip cars in the air.
The climax – for which Jackie got off from a hospital bed and drove a bike through the rains – was long and strong. Even the interim action scenes were gritty. There was a bike race, which – despite its predictability – was full-on adrenaline.

And then, there was the most patriotic scene in Hindi cinema ever, beating even Gadar by many miles.
Meenakshi’s suitor, Shakti Kappoor (the curiously named Jimmy Thapa), meets her lover, Jackie for the first time and does all the things villains are supposed to do. He makes fun of his job (a mechanic in a motorcycle factory - "labour class"), tries to lalkar his khuddaari and finally kicks his 'Indian' motorcycle down. As he gets into his convertible, Jackie blocks the way in a good-natured manner and thumps the bonnet badly enough to put a million dents on it. He then says, Gaadi toh aapki videshi hain, sahab, lekin haath zara Hindustani pad gaya… TAALIYAAN!!! SEETTIII!!!
And to paraphrase yet another motorcycle ad - har Hero mein ek hindustani hain...