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Souten (1983)

 -  Drama | Musical | Romance  -  3 June 1983 (India)
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Ratings: 6.2/10 from 97 users  
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Shyam an ambitious young man is in Mauritius to fulfill his dreams. He meets Rukmini, a millionaire's daughter. They fall in love and get married despite strong opposition from Rukmani's ... See full summary »


(as Sawan Kumar)


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Title: Souten (1983)

Souten (1983) on IMDb 6.2/10

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Complete credited cast:
Shyam Mohit
Tina Munim ...
Rukmani Mohit (Ruku)
Padmini Kolhapure ...
Prem Chopra ...
Shreeram Lagoo ...
Gopal (as Dr. Shreeram Lagoo)
Shashikala ...
Renu Prannath Pasha (as Shashi Kala)
Raisaheb Prannath Pasha
Vijay Arora ...
Satyendra Kapoor ...
(as Satyen Kapoo)
Roopesh Kumar ...
Bingo (Photographer)


Shyam an ambitious young man is in Mauritius to fulfill his dreams. He meets Rukmini, a millionaire's daughter. They fall in love and get married despite strong opposition from Rukmani's stepmother and brother. Shyam would love to be a father, but Rukmani undergoes an operation to stop any pregnancy, as she is least interested in becoming a mother. This widens the gap between the couple. Rukmini even suspects Shyam of having an illicit relationship with Radha, a librarian. Rukmini's stepmother and uncle, who have an eye on Rukmini's wealth, further fuel the misunderstanding to the point of breaking their marriage. Written by

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Drama | Musical | Romance





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3 June 1983 (India)  »

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15 December 2003 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Hindi musical romance, set on Mauritius, deals with self-made businessman Shyam (Rajesh Khanna) and a love triangle whose other points are spoiled rich girl Ruku (Tina Munim) and wistful Radha (Padmini Kolhapure). Shyam sets things in motion by hiring Radha's father (Dr Shriram Lagoo), an untouchable, as his new accountant (Shyam is not into the caste thing at all), saving the little family from starvation. Radha finds religious parallels to their relationship and develops a deep devotion for Shyam. But he's not a particularly religious guy, so it's all lost on him, and he sure likes the looks of westernized Ruku (don't we all!), whom he marries with trappings that seem like vintage Vegas, except for the lack of skydiving Elvis illusionists. An ominous note is that Ruku does have a well-developed caste consciousness.

However, while Ruku's wealthy father (Pran, in a rather perfunctory role) admires Shyam, her stepmother and step-uncle (sinister Prem Chopra) are afraid he has the same ambitions as their own: getting his hands on daddy's money. So trouble looms constantly for this marriage, and when it arrives, it comes in spades.

The story is told mostly as a long flashback, while Shyam is in the dock on a trumped-up charge of bigamy. The DVD box unconscionably gives away the ending of the film, which I didn't like, but not half as much as I didn't like the ending itself. The 12-stringer would have written this one very differently.

The film is well-made and well-acted by all concerned, though I found some of the writing for Munim's character a bit inconsistent. Khanna is solid, and Chopra very effectively underplays his bad guy. He's quite convincing as a dude who believes in "breaking rocks with glass." Kolhapure, a young teenager when the film was made, gives a highly charismatic performance that makes me want to see a lot more of her work. I wish her character had a little feistiness, though that would have made for a different story -- yeah, the one _I'd_ have written. (Note that the IMDb credits, and ergo the synopsis given here, erroneously reverse the roles played by Munim and Kolhapure in the film.)

As par for a Hindi film, Souten is quite long, almost 3 hours. The first (a Holi celebration) and last (part of that lousy ending) musical numbers were my favorites. DVD quality is OK, though the image seems to be slightly cropped -- not intrusive for the much greater part. (The trailer is in 'scope, the feature itself in 1.85:1.) Lay in a box of Kleenex before you watch this; you'll thank me for that tip. And DON'T READ THE [several expletives deleted] DVD BOX SYNOPSIS!!!

On the IMDb scale, I give this a 7, even though I didn't like the ending. Or did I already mention that?

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