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Pakeezah (1972)

7.5
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 898 users  
Reviews: 20 user | 5 critic

The story of a prostitute, with a pure heart (PAKEEZAH), and grand dreams...

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Title: Pakeezah (1972)

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Edit

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
Edit

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

Plot Keywords:

dance | brothel | train | prostitute | qur'an | See more »

Genres:

Musical | Romance | Drama

Edit

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

Kamal Amrohi acquired a Cinemascope lens from MGM on a royalty basis for shooting the film. However, he detected a focusing error in the rush prints that had been missed by the cameraman and even the UK lab team that processed the film. On hearing of this, MGM instructed its Indian subsidiary chief not to collect any more royalty and gave the lens to Amrohi as a gift. See more »

Quotes

[singing]
Salim Ahmed Khan: Come, my love, come, / let us soar beyond the moon...
Sahibjaan: I am ready, / let us go...
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Because I Don't Lie (2001) 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

 
A sumptuous example of Indian film-making at its best!
30 December 1998 | by (London, UK) – See all my reviews

Perhaps the most polished and accomplished of all Indian films - Pakeezah does not fall into any of the traps commonly associated with Bollywood film (ie tackiness, farce, wholesale and unsuccessful imitation of western film themes/genres). Pakeezah is indigenous to the Sub-Continent and authentic, almost Madam Butterfly-like in plot. Characters are well-developed, direction, although sometimes unrefined by today's standards, perceptive and convincing. The Urdu-speaking milieux at the time of Pakeezah were masters of understatement and how the dialogue conveys the subtleties of the age! The acting (particularly the 'looks' and the dynamic between characters) are a delight to behold although the nuances may be lost on contemporary viewers or those not acquainted with the mores and customs of Muslim India.

Coupled, with a captivating screenplay is a beautiful musical score, enhanced by the protagonist displaying eminent command of classical Indian dance (kathak). As is the case with most romantic tragedies, the heroine must die, but she does not take her leave of the audience without the viewer feeling he/she has been party to a truly memorable cinema experience. Pakeezah is surely the pinnacle of what Indian cinema has produced and is unlikely to be paralleled.


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