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Pakeezah (1972)

7.5
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 927 users  
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The story of a prostitute, with a pure heart (PAKEEZAH), and grand dreams...

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Title: Pakeezah (1972)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ashok Kumar ...
Shahabuddin
...
Nargis / Sahibjaan
Raaj Kumar ...
Salim Ahmed Khan
Veena ...
Nawabjaan
D.K. Sapru ...
Hakim Saab (as Sapru)
Kamal Kapoor ...
Nawab Zafar Ali Khan
Vijay Laxmi
Jagdish Kanwal
Nadira ...
Madame Gauhar Jaan
Pratima Devi ...
Salim's Badi Amma
Altaf
Praveen Paul ...
(as Parveen Paul)
Lotan
Chanda ...
(as Chanda Bai)
Meenakshi
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Storyline

A girl, whose mother dies of sorrow from her husband's family's rejection, grows up singing and dancing like her mother. She works as a dancing girl and is courted by a prince, but can think only of a man she has never met, who left her a message on the train. She dreams of him and cannot dance, becomes frightened and runs into the night Written by William Kennedy <william.kennedy@spl.org>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Musical | Romance | Drama

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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

4 February 1972 (India)  »

Also Known As:

Pure Heart  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(DVD)

Sound Mix:

(RCA Sound System)

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

It took 14 years for this film to be completed. To begin with, the film was launched in 1958, jointly planned by Kamal Amrohi and 'Meena Kumari'. It was launched in black-and-white, but when colour came in vogue, Amrohi scrapped those portions already shot and decided to start again. Later, Cinemascope came into vogue, and Amrohi acquired a Cinemascope lens from MGM and scrapped the plain colour portions too. Then Amrohi and Kumari separated in 1964, bringing filming to an indefinite halt. Finally, the film was resumed in 1968, and though by then Kumari was suffering from alcoholism and was in critical condition, she was still Amrohi's only choice and she agreed to complete the film. See more »

Quotes

Hakim Saab: Jo log doodh se jal jate hain woh chhas bhi phoonk phoonk kar peete hain.
[Those who get burnt by milk blow into buttermilk too before drinking it]
Salim Ahmed Khan: Afsos, log doodh se bhi jal jate hain.
[Alas, people get burnt by milk too]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Banarasi Babu (1973) See more »

Soundtracks

Chalo Dildar Chalo
Sung by Lata Mangeshkar and Mohammad Rafi
Composed by Ghulam Mohammed
Lyrics by Kaif Bhopali
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Meena Kumari at her best
16 August 2001 | by (London, England) – See all my reviews

Without question, this film has to be one of the greatest ........ in cinematic history. I have it watched too many times to remember, and each time it is like I am seeing the film for the first time.

Where does one begin?

Meena Kumari's central performance is undoubtedly one of the finest of her career, followed closely by Sahib Bibi aur Ghulam and Phool aur Pathar. Each movement and nuance of her performance, makes any other Bollywood heroine pale into significance. Her masterly interpretation of Kathak coupled with her grace, tragic vulnerability and poetic delivery of Urdhu, is like nothing ever seen on the bollywood screen.

Pakeezah is perhaps the most stylised interpretation of the human condition; the photography, sumptuous cinematography and mise en scene, are so charged with symbolism and meaning, that the viewer is left breathless.

Naushads music, is unsurpassed, his knowledge of the music of the courtesan gharanas is incredible, and the way in which he punctuates the narrative with dark atmospheric motifs and overwhelming romantic melodies is indeed remarkable.

My only advice to anyone who seriously enjoys the spectacle of total cinema, should watch this epic mediation on life and art.


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