CAST & CREW
Cinematic qualities take a backseat when the film “ Love in Bombay” is discussed, for it is associated with a record of sorts. This is perhaps the only film to be released more than four decades after it was made. The reason for this seems to be because, towards his last days Joy Mukherjee, the matinee idol of the 60s was in poor financial and physical health and could not organize the release of the film. However, 42 years later Joy’s son managed to get it released, as it was an already completed film. The irony of the situation is that, had it been released in 1971, it would have grabbed headline due to its bevy of famous stars of that period.
Plot: This is the love story of Baadal (Joy Mukherjee), a rustic simpleton and Preeti ( Waheeda Rehman), a city girl, and daughter to a business magnate. They meet in rather testing times, when Baadal saves the shipwrecked and drowning Preeti and thereafter helps her escape from an island of ferocious tribals using all his chivalrous skills. All this happens in front of Preeti’s father, Mr. Verma (Rehman), but the scheming person that he is he wants to make it difficult for Baadal even to dream of getting the hand of Preeti. So he puts up an almost impossible challenge for Baadal to fulfil – to earn five lakh rupees (a tidier sum 43 years back) on his own in three months, or else forget about Preeti.
This is where all the fun and games get started for Baadal is no mean hero – he is no less than a scuba diver, even without the outfit. Also, a sailor of no mean capabilities; besides being a warrior, an expert horse rider and - when needed - an orator par excellence who can say great sermons at the drop of a hat. But he is not alone in his mission to prove his dad in law wrong He has as his partner Ganpat Rao ( Kishore Kumar), a jovial and helpful prankster who along with his pet bear, adds much fun to the feats of our hero Baadal. As expected, Baadal ends up trumps in the challenge thrown to him by his dad in law to be and wins the hand of his love, Preeti.
Review: Before much can be written about the film in terms on an honest review, it must be acknowledged that the film would immediately suffer from an inherent handicap that it is being reviewed 43 years after it was made. Rather it is more for its period value that the film can be reviewed, equipped as it is with some of the very big names of the period. An examination of the film with a 1971 mindset (if that was possible), would place it as one of the typical run of the mill masala films which could expect a reasonable degree of success. Although Joy Mukherjee was more at his peak in the 60s, the fact that he had leading co-actors and music from one of the best music directors would have made it easy sailing for the film. But by today’s yardstick, the film would have drawn a blank on most aspects, as even the good performers would have looked out of place. Perhaps only the music could have had some effect as though it was composed for a current movie on a period theme.
Verdict: For all the sympathy which may inevitably arise for the film, due to its background, it still would be unfair for the current audience to watch the movie, because even if they have to watch movies of the 70's, there are any number of much better films to see.
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