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Yeh Zindagi Kitni Haseen Hai (1966)

Sarita is a princess with a rather outgoing and adventurous outlook. She does not like to be tied up with bodyguards, and servants, and wants to be free to do stuff on her own. So one day, ... See full summary »

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Credited cast:
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Sarita
...
Sanjay Malhotra
...
Guptaji
Manmohan
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Jolkar
Badri Prasad
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Sayeeda Khan
Madan Kumar ...
Willain
Rajpal ...
(as Dharam Pal)
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Sarita is a princess with a rather outgoing and adventurous outlook. She does not like to be tied up with bodyguards, and servants, and wants to be free to do stuff on her own. So one day, she runs away from home. The palace is instructed to searh for her immediately. Sarita comes to the big city, and enters a beauty pageant, which she wins. There is also a parallel pageant for Mr. Handsome, for which the winner is Sanjay Malhotra. Both Sarita and Sanjay have now to represent India on a foreign tour. They come close, and fall in love. It is then that Sarita discovers to her horror, that Sanjay is not who he claims he is, but an imposter. Written by rAjOo (gunwanti@hotmail.com)

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1966 (India)  »

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Is bloodshed mandatory for a revolution ?
6 February 2014 | by (India) – See all my reviews

We have heard and read a lot about revolutions. Several people especially those who follow the Marxist philosophy and support the cause of the proletariat against the bourgeoisie, maintain that a revolution has to be violent and contain bloodshed to be effective in bringing about the desired change in the system or to put it straight, of the system. It cannot afford to follow non-violence. Well, most of the revolutions in the world have been violent only but usage of violence has its own dangers. Yeh Zindagi Kitni Haseen Hai(1966) has been made on this theme only.

Yeh Zindagi Kitni Haseen Hai(how beautiful this life is!) narrates a story which appears to have been penned in the wake of the gloom prevailing in India after suffering the humiliating defeat in the hands of China in the war of 1962. The movie shows the clippings of Hitler and the world war II in the beginning and then declares that life is beautiful whereas death is horrifying and hence let's worship life and discard violence and killings irrespective of our objectives and missions undertaken.

The story presents Mr. Gupta(Ashok Kumar) as the most popular politician of the region(akin to Jawaahar Laal Nehru) who believes in reforming and replacing the existing system through peace and people's constructive cooperation for the benefit of the whole society. His one time associate, Mr. Jolkar(Moti Laal) has left him and his party and launched his own political outfit because of the ideological differences between the two. Mr. Jolkar(akin to the communist opponents of Jawaahar Laal Nehru in that period) believes in revolutionizing the system prevailing in the country by eliminating those who oppose any such change. He feels that violence is acceptable(and sometimes required) to meet the desired ends. He feels that Mr. Gupta is the biggest obstacle in his path of gaining political power and thereby bringing his desired system into reality and hence he decides to arrange his murder.

A very intricate scheme is made by Mr. Jolkar and his associates to eliminate Mr. Gupta. A young and dedicated worker of Mr. Jolkar's party

  • Sanjay Malhotra(Joy Mukherjee) is assigned of first entering the
household of Mr. Gupta, piercing his security and then kill him. However piercing the strong armour of security covering Mr. Gupta is not that easy. To ensure that, Sanjay uses the secretary of Mr. Gupta(Saira Baanu) who is already in love with a member of their party. She is made a pawn in this dangerous game because a look-alike of herself is already in the eyes of Sanjay and his companions. This look-alike is the princess of an erstwhile princely state whom Sanjay traps in his fake love and then schemes to substitute Mr. Gupta's secretary with her then ensure his entry to Mr. Gupta's residence through herself only.

Though Sanjay is able to trap the princess in his fake love and make her dance to his tune and thereafter enter Mr. Gupta's house alongwith her by posing himself as her fiancé. However everything does not go according to his plan and not only he realizes the heinousness of the crime he's about to perpetrate but also first, he has to run for his life and then he finds himself trapped in the charge of the murder of another worker(a female) of Mr. Jolkar's party. The climax contains a highly emotional tone with Mr. Jolkar's realization of his treading the wrong path.

Pious intentions do not necessarily lead to pious results in case the correct things necessary to execute them are not done. Exactly this has happened with Yeh Zindagi Kitni Haseen Hai. I do not know the origin of the theme as to whether it's the own idea of the script-writer or lifted from somewhere. However the end result of his work is disastrous. A major chunk of the narrative has been devoted to Sanjay's implementing his scheme of trapping the princess in his fake love and then fill this wrong fact in her psyche that she is not any princess but the secretary of Mr. Gupta. It's this part of the story which lets the complete movie down, making a mockery of the great theme picked for making this movie.

The scenes which are directly linked to the theme of futility and undesirableness of violence are the most impressive ones. The scene of the sacrifice of the lead actress in one of her roles is able to move the audience deep within. How the committed party workers are brainwashed to be ready to sacrifice their own lives alongwith those of their near and dear ones for the so-called great cause has been shown effectively.

Director R.K. Nayyar could not draw praiseworthy performances from the lead pair. Despite being in double role, Saira Baanu could not do much except looking beautiful(she was called Beauty Queen in her heyday). Joy Mukherjee is over the top for most of time especially when he is trying to brainwash the lady for his vested interest(in fact, the vested interest of his party). It's the seasoned actors of Bollywood - Ashok Kumar and Moti Laal who have delivered towering performances and thereby succeeded at least partially in hiding the deficiencies of the script. The supporting cast has done well.

Yeh Zindagi Kitni Haseen Hai is an opportunity wasted. However courtesy some impressive sequences, some great performances, some good songs, beautiful locations and above all, the great theme; I recommend this movie as a decent one time watch to those who are fond of watching golden oldies.


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