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Great family drama...
gabs-1016 January 2007
Possibly one of the best family-centred Hindi films ever made. Shakti Samanta has done it again! "Aradhana" (1969) was a jubilee hit, but "Anuraag" (1972) will always be a family favourite! Calcutta-based actress Maushumi Chatterjee really gave her all as the blind sculptor Shivani, while Rajesh Khanna, Ashok Kumar and Nutan made me weep buckets with their moving dialogues as well as their subliminal performances as a humble flower seller, a doting grandfather and a loving mother respectively.

Nevertheless, I strongly feel that the biggest credit should go to Lataji. I was captivated by her voice, as with so many other films, which she sang for. "Mera Raja, Beta Poocha, Ek Paheli" has a calming effect and it was extremely touching to see Anu (Nutan) singing it as she choked through her tears, fearing the worst for her ailing son Chandan. "Woh Kya Hai?" is yet another song by Lataji from this movie that I love. To me, it is a song of lovers.

In a nutshell, "Anuraag" (1972) is just one of those rare films that can be put into what Yash Chopra categorizes as a "wholesome movie". In short, it is a heart-rending family drama that deserves much praise...
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Never allow your faith in goodness to be shaken
jmathur_swayamprabha2 September 2014
The bitter experiences of my life have shaken my faith in ethics, goodness and the sublime values of life. However the movies like Anuraag (1972) is one such phenomena which reassures me that these noble things have not vanished altogether and one should not allow his faith in them to be evaporated.

The decade of seventies when medicine had not made much progress in our country and the persons who happened to have caught some lethal decease, were seldom able to survive; Bollywood presented many movies whose protagonist was a Zinda-Dil person with an ever-present smile on lips and possessing a jolly nature with a never-say-die spirit but suffering from a lethal decease. Such protagonist, but natural, died in the end, leaving all his loving ones as grief-stricken behind him. Anand (1970), Mili (1975) and Ankhiyon Ke Jharokhon Se (1978) were certain movies in this genre. Anuraag also falls into that category only. The difference is that this movie presents a child suffering from cancer who donates his eyes to a blind girl so that she could see the world through his eyes after his demise.

This kind-hearted and nice child of Anuraag (love) is Chandan (Satyajeet) who is the grandson of Rai Saheb (Ashok Kumar) who has already lost his son and now invested all his love in his little grandson Chandan. He lives with his widow daughter-in-law (Nutan) and sees the shadow of his lost son in Chandan only, teaching him all the virtues and noble values of life. Chandan happens to come across a blind girl Shivaani (Moushumi Chatterjee) who lives in a charitable home meant for girls like her only. She is a good sculptor and through Chandan, she comes into contact with Chandan's mother and grandfather on one hand and a nice boy Raajesh (Vinod Mehra) on the other. Raajesh falls in love with her and decides to make her his life partner. However his father Amirchand (Madan Puri) gets ready for their marriage only when Shivaani gets her sight back. It is known after her relevant medical examination that it's possible only when some donor gives his / her eyes for transplantation in her body. Suddenly Chandan is found to be suffering from cancer which has gone beyond the stage of treatment. Coming to know this truth, Chandan decides to donate his eyes to his loving Didi, i.e., Shivaani and finally Shivaani is able to see this world through Chandan's eyes.

The movie gets emotional and turns into a tear-jerker in its final half an hour only. Prior to that, it's mainly a feelgood movie which producer-director Shakti Saamanta has made in the style of the prestigious Rajshri Banner of Bollywood. Certain(both tragic and comic) sequences of this movie remind us Rajshri's blockbuster movie – Hum Aapke Hain Kaun(1994). The story is flat and told as such only. We see good people with their good thoughts and gestures only. Except for the caricaturesque character of Raajesh's father who is a miser but ready to spend money for the sake of fame and honour, all the characters shown are completely positive and virtuous. Prior to the tragic twist in the story, the narrative consists of comic situations and dialogs which may not be able to provoke laughter in the viewer but certainly brings a smile to his / her lips.

The incident of Chandan's trying to understand how it feels to be blind reminds me of a story 'The School for Sympathy' read by me in my English textbook when I was in my secondaries. His deliberately not solving all the questions in the examination so that another boy who is needy of scholarship, is able to get the first rank, also reminds me of a similar story read by me in my Hindi textbook during my primaries. Through these episodes, the filmmaker has highlighted the virtues embedded in the character of this child which touches as well as inspires the audience.

Anuraag is a simple movie, not lavish. It is technically good all the same and every frame of it is beautiful. It is a compact movie which only was the right thing to do for the filmmaker considering its wafer-thin storyline.

Sachin Dev Burman has composed good music for the movie with the help of the beautiful lyrics of Anand Bakshi. Devoid of any chartbusters, this album contains ear-soothing and soul-soothing songs like Sun Ri Pawan, Woh Kya Hai, Neend Churaaye Chain Churaaye, Raam Kare Babua Hamaar Phulwa Ko and a very good lullaby - Mera Raaja Beta Boojhe Ek Paheli.

Child artist Satyajeet has performed very well in the pivotal role whereas Bengali actress Moushumi Chatterjee has also done satisfactorily in this debut Hindi movie of herself. Seasoned actors Ashok Kumar, Nutan, Madan Puri, Anita Guha, Abhi Bhattachaarya, Satyen Kappu etc. all have done their parts satisfactorily alongwith the romantic hero Vinod Mehra. Shakti Saamanta's favourite actor Rajesh Khanna has delivered a touching performance in his special appearance in the role of flower-seller Gangaraam.

Anuraag won the Filmfare Award for the best movie which is surprising as this movie is a very simple movie and was not a blockbuster as well. All the same, it's to be admitted that such movies emphatically underscore that goodness does exist even today which is to be preserved and nurtured. The good and virtuous people as shown in the movie may be difficult to find in today's selfish times but their race has not gone extinct. The dumbfound(with grief) character of Ashok Kumar rightly asserts that God forces the strictest of tests of life on such people only. And it's their greatness that even then they do not give up their goodness and noble values of life adopted by them.

I recommend this lovely and inspiring movie to one and all.hem.
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innocence jindabaad
vannu d14 March 2014
Warning: Spoilers
It is certainly one of the best family drama movie in Bollywood. Ashok Kumar, Moushmi Chatterjee and Nutan has done a great job but the real excellence lies in the subject of the movie. Here a boy want to donate his eyes (or an eye whatever :P) to a woman (or girl) and a man wants to marry the same blind woman ..and a family is also ready to adopt that woman ...such a lucky blind woman! ...neways Maushami Chatterjee is perfect cast here and the events don't seem exaggerated because of her suave and acting....all in all every Cinephile should watch this movie for the innocence and message it renders to the society. Apart from this the relation between grandfather and the boy is also refreshing though a bit over the top but again justified by the story. Music by S.D. Burman is also soothing and the song where the blind girl is expressing her love to her lover has great poetic sense.
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A typical family drama, but still moving
Peter Young22 May 2011
Anuraag is one of the lesser known films of Shakti Samanta today, and I don't know how to explain it. This is generally a very typical movie of its sort, but it's quite watchable in spite of its flaws. Anuraag starts off as quite an ordinary family drama which at first does not seem to be going anywhere. There wasn't anything that I particularly found wrong, actually it was quite enjoyable despite the misgivings, but everything looked so dormant. The surprise, an unpleasant one should I say, comes in the form of some very tragic and sudden news concerning the little kid of the family. From then on we can see a rather predictable development, which still manages to engage the viewer until the expected ending. Anuraag is not the best film dealing with the subject, but something about it, and I somehow could not figure what exactly, does the job. The story is of course a big strength, although the execution often is lacking and the script is underwritten, particularly towards the second half when everything is presented and developed far too quickly and leans on convenience too much. At times I felt the only reason behind the making of this movie was just to forcibly wring tears from the viewers and nothing else.

Having already brought out all the negative comments, I must say that this movie does have its own uniqueness. Although there are too many songs for my liking, they are all very nice, and along with the many characters and sub-plots, create a colourful picture. The movie may be melodramatic, but some sequences really manage to move you, at times more than expected. This may be mostly due to the light mood and the very good cast, who rise above the weak writing. Ashok Kumar plays the leading role, and he's good. Nutan, in a role that was strangely labelled "special appearance" in the opening credits, looks very beautiful and shines with her natural acting. Vinod Mehra is adequate, and so is Moushumi Chatterjee, who is beautiful and graceful, but not particularly impressive where acting is concerned. Other cast members include Rajesh Khanna, an actor I personally am not a fan of, doing pretty well in a tiny little role. To sum it up, Anuraag is worth a watch. Movies with similar subjects, like Anand (70, Mukherjee), Mili (75, Mukherjee), and above-all, Kaash (Bhatt, 87), are of course much better, but it's not bad at all, and fans of the genre would certainly enjoy watching it with their families.
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