While studying in Aligarh, Anwar Hussain Anwar falls in love with a veiled woman and is unable to get her out of his mind. Enroute to Lucknow, they meet with Nawab Buland Akhtar Changezi, and subsequently meet with him a few days later so that he can use his influence to secure an editor's job for Anwar with a magazine. Nawab then asks Anwar to teach his sister, Husna, some poetry, to which he agrees, and eventually finds that she is the very same veiled woman. Both fall in love with each other and the Nawab approves of this alliance even though Anwar lives a poor lifestyle. The formal engagement ceremony takes place and arrangements are made for the wedding to take place soon. The heavily indebted Nawab does not realize that soon he will find Anwar in the company of a lowly courtesan, Najma; and pressure will be brought on him to get Husna to marry wealthy Munne Raja - who is all set to auction the former's mansion as well as belongings. Written by
This movie, about young love and the consequences of societal disapproval, started out a bit slow for me, and I almost started to regret buying the DVD. I was also a bit spooked by the paleness of the male actors' faces (I know it sounds weird, and maybe it's just me, but there you go). The make-up they used in those days must have been some kind of white chalk-based powder! Not a good look. But once I got over (or at least, tried to live with) my fear of pale male faces, and the story in the movie really kicked off,I was pleasantly absorbed.
The music in the film is lovely, and the lead actors, Rajendra Kumar and Sadhana, pull off very sincere and touching performances. Sadhana, in particular, is enchanting and charming as Husna. The actor who plays 'Husna's brother', the actress who plays the role of 'Najma', and most of the other cast members all do very well. The legendary Pran, looking very young and sprightly and with all his fantastic on screen presence, does a great job in this movie.
The only exception to the good acting in 'Mere Mehboob' is the dreadfully (in my opinion) miscast young man who plays Rajendra Kumar's young poet friend, and supplies most of the comic relief in the film. First of all, the young man does not look young at all, and certainly doesn't look like Kumar's contemporary. There's a scene where he's with his parents, and they look more like 3 siblings. Also, his humour seems forced and was a bit annoying. I should probably give him an 'A' for effort though, it looks like he was trying his best, anyway.
All in all, this a sweet tale of love and acceptance, and of being proud of who you are and where you come from. Very charming.
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