Review Room

Book reviews and miscellanous thoughts

That 70s thing

Written By: amodini - Sep• 27•06

This morning as I rush about getting ready for work, I hear a familiar, evil laugh. No wonder it’s familiar, for there grinning away on screen is Prem Chopra. He has a gun in his hand, and is smirking (as only Prem Chopra can) at Rajinder Kumar , and saying “Aaeeye, aaeeye Saxena Sahab” (come, come Saxena Sahab). It’s been so long that I’ve heard anyone allude villainaously to Saxena, that I actually get nostalgic for the Prem Chopra genre of movies. If you recall back then, Saxena was ubiquitous; there was a Saxena in every Hindi film, and there was a reference to “Saxena Sahab” in every movie worth it’s salt. Saxenas abounded in the world. Kind of like the “Raj Malhotra” of nowdays.

Anyway, onscreen Rajinder Kumar looks worried. Sure, he looks worried. They have his son (Rishi Kapoor) all tied up. Of course Rishi doesn’t actually know that Saxena Sahab is his Dad. Oh, yay, this early in the morning, having switched on the TV for a split second, I have actually stumbled on the Father-Son reunion thingy. (or so think I, on intermittent trips from the bathroom to the TV). On cue, slimy Chopra says to Kapoor “Yehi hai tumhara Baap” or words to that effect. Rishi looks distraught : “Nahin !” But Chopra isn’t done yet – he’s going to kill both of them . Yet at this very crucial moment facing imminent death, they have choices. “Who wants to go first ?” he wonders “Beta pehle ya baap ?”

And then my dears the crowning glory – apparently Rishi’s girlfriend is also in Chopra’s evil clutches. He wants her to be brought out too “Iski memhbooba ko le aao” etc. A rosy-cheeked Neetu Singh appears. She appears suitable rebellious and hurls the choicest of epithets at Prem Chopra. But you know Chopra, quite unfazed and quite taken with her womanly charms. He smiles and what a smile; it stretches from ear to ear and still looks evil. And he leers. And what a leer – a cross between a fool’s grin and a psychopath’s all-knowing sneer. So there you have it, the long-lost father-son duo, the evil stereotypical villain and his henchmen, and the buxom, peppy heroine. Apparently the son doesn’t like the father, so there’s some familial tension there. But then of course in the climax true blood will tell. The good guys face the bad guys with enthusiasm. They laugh in the face of danger and each one’s righteous cries implore the villain to kill him/her and spare the others.

I have to go – the toothbrush overfloweth. But really how noble ! And oh, how 70s !

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  1. Anonymous says:

    This reminds me of what Navjot siddhu says about Prem Chopra and his favorite dailogue. Though that dailogue is pretty bad one!

  2. AMODINI says:

    Sidhu is pretty intolerable, so am a little perturbed that this article reminds you of him 🙂 .

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