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Pyaasa (1957)

8.2
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Ratings: 8.2/10 from 2,450 users  
Reviews: 25 user | 20 critic

A talented but indigent poet Vijay struggles for love and recognition in this selfish world.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Mala Sinha ...
Meena
Guru Dutt ...
Vijay
...
Gulabo
Rehman ...
Mr. Ghosh
Johnny Walker ...
Abdul Sattar
Kumkum ...
Juhi (as Kum Kum)
Leela Mishra ...
Vijay's Mother (as Leela Misra)
Shyam
Mehmood ...
Vijay's brother
Radheshyam
Tun Tun ...
Pushplata
Maya Dass
Moni Chatterjee ...
Chatterjee (as Moni Chatterji)
Ashita
Neel Kamal
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Storyline

Unemployed Vijay is the youngest in his family consisting of his widowed mom, and two brothers. His passion is poetry - frowned upon by his brothers - who want him to find gainful employment instead. Vijay's poems are quite radical in which he laments about the poor, the destitute, and the arrogance of the rich after the departure of the British from India. His efforts to get them published are in vain. He takes to drinking, gets in trouble with the law, is disowned by his brothers, ends up at a brothel and befriends a prostitute named Gulabo. Gulabo is sympathetic, listens to him as he pours his heart out, and decides to assist Vijay. Watch what happens when Gulabo approaches some of her affluent clientèle to assist Vijay and try and get his work published, without revealing that they are written by an alcoholic, disheveled, homeless man. Written by rAjOo (gunwanti@hotmail.com)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Musical | Romance

Certificate:

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

19 February 1957 (India)  »

Also Known As:

Thirsty  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This is the most favorite movie of the Bollywood actor Aamir Khan See more »

Quotes

Vijay: Apne shauk ke liye pyaar karti hai aur apne aaram ke liye pyar bechti hai.
[Love, for her, is a hobby that she can barter for material pleasures]
See more »

Connections

References Citizen Kane (1941) See more »

Soundtracks

Jinhen Naaz Hai Hind Par Woh Kahaan Hain
Sung by Mohammad Rafi
Music composed by Sachin Dev Burman
Lyrics by Sahir Ludhianvi
See more »

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User Reviews

 
An intense drama
19 May 2006 | by (India) – See all my reviews

Guru Dutt had the theme for "Pyaasaa" running in his mind for 4 years before he actually got around to making it. He followed the counsel of friends who advised him to make some money before venturing on such an offbeat drama and made such purely commercial, but thoroughly enjoyable, films as "Aar Paar", "C.I.D" and "Mr & Mrs 55" which were all commercially very successful.

"Pyaasa" starts brilliantly - a man lying down, staring at the sky, the flowers - all very happy. A bee starts buzzing over a flower and then, moves down to the grass. The smile on the poet's face is broken as a man's boot uncaringly descends on the bee. Thats more or less the theme of the film. The uncaring attitude of the society where the struggling ones are trampled over mercilessly. Laced through this is the whole romance triangle with one lady dumping her lover for a well-to-do businessman for the sake of money, and a prostitute who loves the poet truly.

The film is filled with some memorable moments and lots of brilliant shots. My favourite is the sequence where Dutt tries to commit suicide is magnificent - there is no dialogue through that 3 minute sequence. But I think the scene would have been even more remarkable had there been no background music.

V.K.Murthy does an outstanding job with the camera. I compare the Guru Dutt-Murthy combo to the Orson Welles-Greg Tolland combo that created "Citizen Kane". Murthy was even better in "Kaagaz ke phool" - but thats for later. This film is an absolute visual treat.

S.D.Burman does a fair job with the music but it is really Sahir Ludhianvi's poetry thats the pride of the songs in this film. Stinging sharp, the words slam the devious ways of the world, the mercenary nature of the society. The climax, though a trifle melodramatic, is brilliantly conceived.

All in all, this is a film thats worth preserving in your DVD collection. This was Guru Dutt's best film and that is saying a lot ! He is now usually touted as the greatest film director in the commercial world of Hindi films. He demonstrates how a film can be both artistically satisfying as well being throughly entertaining to the masses.


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