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Showing posts from January, 2012

Week 10 and Helen

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"मैं सारे ज़माने के ग़म की दवा हूँ "
(I am the cure of all the sorrows in the world) - Lyrics from Helen's song in the film अधिकार (Adhikaar).



In the book Helen - The life and times of an H-Bomb, author Jerry Pinto tells us just how close Helen came to personify these (and many other similar) words in her screen persona that extended across multiple movies spread over almost three decades. In doing so he doesn't just take us through the phenomenon that was Helen, he also takes this opportunity to take us through the myriad ways of Indian, mostly Hindi, cinema. This is as much a commentary on the phases of Indian cinema as it is on the way Helen, through the characters played by her, acted as a bridge between these. As someone who grew up on all sorts of Hindi movies, I can identify with the author's apparent unwillingness to openly criticize the movies that he discusses throughout the book, however kitschy or corny they might sound. The movie-buff inside the author,…