Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi (2003) Poster

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9/10
Refreshingly bold and meaningful
shafi4uf11 April 2006
A few days ago, I watched Sudhir Mishra's Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi with some friends. I am still thinking of it after more than a week has passed. Rare does it happen that an Indian movie leaves such a lasting impression. It is refreshingly bold in its portrayal of its central characters and the story of their personal journeys in search for their identities.

The story is set in the early 70's when emergency and pro-poor (naxalite) movement shaped the thoughts and actions of millions of idealistic youth in India. The story deals with three characters- two males and a female, each from a different stratum of Indian society- each with different passions, goals and idealism. It is their story of love, hope and final attainment of their goals.

The central and most important character is without doubt Chitrangada Singh's Geeta. Her idealism draws her to revolutionary ideas, but she is torn by her need for the softer, more materialistic things of life, for love and a family. This constant pull shapes her life, her choices, and her final destination, depicted touchingly in the end of the movie. She is shown as the most human of all the characters, making her the most believable and most admirable. On one hand, I am in awe of her strength and inner resolve; on the other hand, I feel her suffering and emotional trauma.

KayKay Menon's character Siddharth starts out as a youth of privilege who takes a bold step of fighting for the cause he believes in, leaving behind his only true love. He struggles with the repressive authorities and the demons with in him- his sudden realization that he is after all human in the chase scene, had a dramatic effect on me, suddenly bringing other side of his nature into sharp perspective. His desire to fight out the authorities is derived from his own insecurities about himself. He finds his closure when he accepts his failures.

The most complex of all these characters is Shiny Ahuja's Vikram. His desire to climb the social ladder is surpassed only by his fiery passion for Geeta. She is the only centrality to his other wise meaningless, high powered, and politically connected life. She makes him yearn for making himself successful, and that is what drives her away from him. His choices can be understood only in the context of the complex and unfulfilled relationship he shares with Geeta. His love is never requited in the true sense of the word. Nevertheless, he is the one who finally brings meaning back into Geeta's life.

Technically, the movie is very good, with nice camera work and precise scissors of the editor. Some scenes are breathtaking in their beauty. Dialogues are sometimes difficult to understand, but that ends up adding to the over all tension of the movie. A must watch for any lover of good cinema!
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10/10
A treat of a film
negimp18 April 2005
A real breath of fresh air in Indian cinema, Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi is a very real, earnest, crackling-with-life portrayal of what it (apparently) was like to be a college student in Delhi in the late 60s and 70s with the opposing currents of Marxism and (indira) Gandhian totalitarianism. Intertwined with the ideology and the politics is a love story of three people, who start off with different ideas and whose ideas criss-cross in the course of the film. Superb direction, vibrant cinematography, slick editing, lovely music and superlative performances from all three protagonists make for a thoroughly satisfying cinematic experience. The surprise package is Shiny Ahuja, whose model-boy looks belie a prodigious acting talent. Both Kay Kay Menon and Chitrangda Singh deliver superb performances with Chitrangda looking stunning throughout. People say she looks like Smita Patil, I wouldn't know. While the film is not without its faults, including the occasional stilted dialogues and imprecision in the narrative, the overall effect is good enough to make you forget these. Watch this and get high!!

PS. I also have a quibble with the way 5.1 sound was used quite ineffectively when it could have been much better employed in many scenes. But it's churlish to complain about such things in a treat of a movie!!
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9/10
Unforgettable....beautiful...haunting and emotional
rock83198326 August 2006
Here we go.After a long time finally i watched Haazaron Khwaishein Aisi.Or you can say'Thousand desires such as these'.Sudhir Mishra is a wonderful director.But he seemed somewhat lost during 'Chameli' and 'calcutta mail' when he tried to combine meaningful cinema with commercialism But with Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi he is back in form as he was during 'Is Raat Ki Subah Nahi' and 'dharavi' But most of the dialogues are in English

Story: Sidhharth(kay kay menon) is an idealist. Born to a Muslim lawyer father and a Hindu mother and believes in Marxism.The story traces Siddharth's journey from Marxist jargon to the Maoist (Naxalite) rebellion. His emotional attachment to Geeta does not stop him from his political pursuits. Post-college, Geeta(Chitrangada Singh) is married to an IAS officer but she continues to see Siddharth on the sly. Vikram(Shiny Ahuja) too has always nursed unconditional love in his heart for Geeta. But that's all there is to his soft side. A small town boy once, Vikram climbs the social ladder by networking in the big league unabashedly. Geeta ends her marriage and starts living in the village with Siddharth. This is the time in the film when Geeta's character evolves. From a London-bred girl to teaching village women, or having a child out of wedlock or asking favours from Vikram in hours of need to a lot of other gruesome realities, Geeta discovers herself. The story movies on. The characters mature and move on. They regret. They apologise. They change. Their lives are not the same.

Hazaaron Khwashien Aisi is path breaking cinema in every aspect.There are movies and movies and movies..then comes Hazaron Khwaishein Aisi.Hazaaron Khwaishen Aisi..'thousands of desires such as these'. Life is full of desires.We keep on desiring more and more but how much our desires gets fulfilled?

Kay Kay is good as always.Given the screen time he have got he is good in that.His faith..his ideology and to live for a reason makes u think.He is just perfect

Chitrangada Singh playing the central character is even better than a performance what you can call outstanding The way her character shapes up.From a student to a lover and then living for a cause she is simply outstanding. Her performance is totally flawless.And yes she reminds you of Smita Patil.Both in looks and in acting

And now Shiny Ahuja.From a one sided lover to mastermind rich broker and a person who receives the worst fate he is simply 'Incredible'. Your heart will go for him.His unconditional love and the way he helps geeta over and again is simply out of the world. Love should be unconditional..if there are conditions it doesnot remain love.The character of 'Vikram Malhotra' is so much powerful it will left you thinking about him even after movie ends.In the scene in which he says 'I am getting married' and then he starts dancing and the soulful music 'Mohabbat Mein Nai Hai Farq Jeene Aur Marne Ka Usi Ko Dekh Kar Jeete Hai Jis Kaafir Pe Dum Nikle'. The pain,agony and sadness which he delivers through his smile just leaves u speechless

Music is of high standard.Lyrics are so much meaningfull and heart touching

What makes the movie stand out is the subtle way in which the motivations of each of the characters evolve through the story and the delicate and restrained portrayal of their melange of emotions affecting their decisions at different points of time with different political and social contexts. As my favourite movie critic Mayank Shekhar sums up this movie 'It is this most relevant and urgent mirror of our period that makes Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi one of the most significant films of any time. And a film that I think college kids should remember Mishra by. The confrontation between Siddharth and his dad when his dad says 'So u have faith in an ideology that talks about violation and murder of people as a way of changing the system..what gives u that right?'..Simply incredible

Its definitely one of the best films of this decade.Hard-hitting yet so subtle Its a much watch for everyone who loves quality cinema. A thousand desires such as these...left unfulfilled

Finally i would end this review with the incredible lyrics of the song 'Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi'

A thousand desires such as these A thousand moments to set this night on fire Reach out and you can touch them You can touch them with your silences You can reach them with your lust Rivers mountains rain Rain against a torrid hill's cape A thousand A thousand desires such as these

I loved rain as a child As a lost young man Empty landscapes Bleached by a tired sun And then And then Suddenly it came Like a dark unknown women Her eyes scorched my silences Her body wrapped itself around me Like a summer without end

Pause me hold me reach me Where no man has gone Crossing the seven seas With the wings of fire I fly towards nowhere And you Rivers mountains rain Rain against a scorched landscape of pain

A thousand desires such as these A thousand moments to set this night on fire Reach out and you can touch them You can touch them with your silences You can reach them with your lust Rivers mountains rain Rain against the torrid hill's cape A thousand, A thousand desires such as these ...........
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10/10
Superb is an understatement
Mausam19 April 2006
Warning: Spoilers
I just finished watching this movie. Its a 2003 movie, and this is 2006. Why was I unaware of it when it was released - I don't know! Thanks to a few friends, who brought my attention to the movie.

I am thinking of a suitable adjective for the movie -- 'superb' seems like a huge understatement. The movie is perfect - perfect in all respects. The story has breadth as well as depth. It touches on so many aspects yet one gains something fresh in whichever aspect one focuses on. The narration is honest, brutal, real. All characters are different, standing for their own ideals, consistent with who they are and so very disjoint from who the others are. Not one character does anything that cannot be justified in their context. None of the characters go overboard in their actions, something that is almost inconceivable for anything that comes out off Bollywood. I can go on and on.

But these are not really the things that I noticed while I was watching the movie. All these intellectual appreciations are afterthoughts. As I watched the movie I got intensely involved with the characters, their stories, their lives. Different characters stand for different things - Siddharth wants to contribute to the upliftment of people in the village, he is willing to leave everything and willing to stay in the villages for his cause. Geeta loves Siddharth to the extent that his cause becomes her own. Vikram loves Geeta immensely but knows that she doesn't love him, at the same time his love to her is pure and unconditional. Vikram is very practical, doesn't believe in these high-funda ideologies of changing the world, is ambitious, wants to earn money. (This synopsis really doesn't do justice to the characters)

So where did my involvement come from? : My involvement with Siddharth came from his passion towards his cause. His unconditional faith in his struggle against all odds, standing by his principles. At the same time, my involvement with Geeta came from her taking bold steps: leaving everything when she felt right, returning to the village inspite of a perpetually threat-filled life there, divorcing, and ignoring social pressures, if any. My involvement with Vikram comes from his being truthful to who he is -- a practical normal person, wants to make big in the world, wants fame, etc. At the same time, he is always ready to use his contacts, his earnings for people that he care for, even for people who are cared by people he cares. A genuine person who never gets the love he yearns for but is still mature enough to pursue his one sided love with full honesty.

As I get involved with all these three characters, these undergo lots of changes -- they mature. They all start at college together, life takes different routes with them, they end up at different places. One notices that life is unpredictable, it has the capacity to offer something that is totally unexpected. While life is unpredictable, people themselves are too -- they change. The process of growth of a person never ends, even to the extent that the sole purpose of life changes sometimes.

I know this became more abstract than I intended it to be, so let me focus on some thoughts that struck me while watching the movie. I noticed how much one's context affects who one is: how a rich child is more inclined to take up social issues, as money is not an issue with him, whereas a lower middle class person better earn some money and feed himself and his family well. Also, the brutality of Gandhian principles and altruistic living develops in the child a sheer disrespect for a selfless life, because the child recognises the neglect he/she suffered while the parent was away helping others.

Another interesting observation is that we, humans, tend to leave behind the original reasons for our doing something in the first place. For instance, Geeta continues to work in the village even when Siddharth is no longer there, because she started owning the cause. The cause didn't remain limited to something she is doing for Siddharth.

Somewhat ironical was the fact that Vikram who used to be so disjoint from the whole ideal I-will-change-the-world business, was the one who was most severely affected in the end from the whole process. It was ironical because he wasn't there taking the blows for the cause. He was there taking blows for Siddharth. And he didn't even care for Siddharth so much; he cared for Geeta who cared for Siddharth!

The movie also touches on the Naxalite movement, its original ideology, how there are different factions within the setup etc. It tries to show the movement in a somewhat positive light.

Needless to say that there is a big social commentary on the state of villages (in those days) and to some extent even now, and how people like me living in urban settlements so easily disregard the real issues dealing with them. How we chose to ignore the problems faced by the people there, how we -- relatively more powerful people -- aren't ready to take any stand for them. Even after watching the movie I can't imagine myself leaving the comfortable state of living and stand for this cause, I probably do not have the guts!
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10/10
A Thousand Desires Such That...
Prakash Jashnani8 February 2006
If you thought that the 60's and the 70's was just about Rock and Roll, drugs, and retro clothes, think again? The 3-R's - Revolution, Rebellion, and Rock n' Roll - dominated most young minds. Rural India was subjugated. Independence was a mere farce (It's a different issue that it still is). Amidst all this chaos, the youth of India were driven towards various Ideologies. But how many of them were serious about the paths they chose? It was a fad during the 60-70's to indulge in drugs, rock n roll and college morchas. Most students entered college politics and turned into rebels, who were against the capitalist values of the society and the government in general. But not everyone was serious. Once their "wonder years" were through, these so-called socialist preachers, born with a silver spoon, backed away in testing times. But, then there were those who took this path seriously to a different level. Those who gave up luxury, and dreams of a "settled" life with wife and kids for the benefit of those Indians who suffered due to the Government's apathy.

Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi (HKA) is the story of such turbulent times during the India of the 60's and the 70's. The Emergency, the Naxalite movement, the domination of government in every decision Indians made. It is the story of three people who lead contrasting lives, with contrasting ideologies, and how their lives are intertwined.

If Siddharth (Kay Kay Menon) gives up his luxurious ways to reside in the villages of Bihar and start the Naxalite movement, Geeta (Chitrangada Singh) decides to pursue studies, only to eventually unite with Siddharth and support him in his mission. On the other hand, Vikram (Shiney Ahuja) chooses to be a middleman, or broker, of sorts, fixing dubious deals for the government and the capitalists.

This is a movie about ambitions, of desire, of love, and politics. If Siddharth continues his undying mission to form a strong Naxalite movement; Geeta, in spite of being married to Arun (Arif Zakaria), supports Siddharth from the outside as her lover, and confidante. It is as much about Geeta's own struggle of making the right choice: marriage, ideology, love, and as much about Vikram who, in spite of being a womanizer, continues to love Geeta and willing to go to any extent only to be in Geeta's good books.

HKA is a reminder to the youth of today that there were times when young blood was idealistic and not idle-istic. It is a dark reality, and a bitter truth of the struggle, which many went through during those turbulent times. Maybe the youth should wake up to such calls, and not just work in call-centers, lest we downgrade to a society where we might again be dominated and Independence becomes a facade.
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10/10
An awesome film!
vilu19793 February 2006
I had no clue what the movie was about when I rented it, and I absolutely loved it. Though I felt there were a few oddities when I saw it for the first time, when I watched it for the second and third time, I was able to appreciate the excellent performances by the entire cast, and the awesome script. Especially Shiny Ahuja, who plays Vikram Malhotra to perfection - every single expression on his face throughout the movie was a 100% apt. I also loved the Indian-ness imbued in the settings - the houses, roads, cars, government buildings, sound of birds, Geeta's sarees etc. Made me feel deeply nostalgic. The music adds to the poignancy of the movie, and is used very fittingly, to create a dramatic effect in certain scenes. I highly recommend this movie to all movie buffs, because I think of it as a unique work of art from the Hindi film industry. It's entertaining to those who want light entertainment, provides food for thought to those who are keen on watching films with ideological themes, and is an absolute must-see for die-hard romantics.
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10/10
Surrealistic India!!
rekha-r-nair24 July 2005
Today is a generation obsessed with western clothes, western accent, western everything... They tend to forget that they can explore these luxuries ONLY because their homeland is a free nation and a democracy. Hazaaron Khwaishen Aisi is meant to be an eye-opener for the youth who have not seen India when she was down and a reminder for the adults of what their generation and their older generations survived.

The movie starts off as a few people just following some ideologies that are very common in the college campuses. But some of them take it too far and decide to live their lives by those ideals while others go and make money and a grand living. Both lives have meanings of their own. The movie very eloquently shows how diverse India is... it shows the cities that are flourishing in wealth and dirty politics; it also shows villages where people die because of poverty or even caste related oppression.

The movie might be perceived in another way too... It could look like the moral is to "Not follow your ideologies if they are for just the well being of others"... but then is that life really worth living?? I think the underlying message was to just follow your vision to completion even if the sacrifices required are humongous.

The casting was perfect. Kay Kay Menon proves to be a very versatile and powerful actor. Inspite of being quite new to movies, he shows a lot of maturity and intelligence in the way he acts. I cannot imagine anyone other than Shiny Ahuja in the role of Vikram. He brings in the "cool" element in the movie. He has the charisma of a fixer-upper guy and also the fiery passion of a man in love with a woman who is in love with someone else. Chitrangada Singh does a terrific portrayal of the girl born and brought up in metros but finally following her ideals (or maybe the ideals of the man she loves). She has a lot of potential to be a powerful character actress.The two songs - title track and 'bawra mann' are really haunting melodies.

I don't think the film was a commercial success... But I definitely vote it as a "must see"... worth every penny! Its nice to see Pritish Nandy putting his money into projects that have some social value...
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9/10
We thought emotions(esp. love) were abstract entities but this film makes you think again..
dhaval kolhapure17 August 2006
Top-notch performances, touching back-ground score and its intense script take 'Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi' to never-before-scaled heights of cinema.Its a movie about believing in something so unconditionally, that you give whatever it takes to stand up for it..even if it is your life.

The film showcases the three selfless lives of free India's first generation in their youth set in the back-drop of Naxalite moment and Emergency.

Shiny Ahuja is dynamic as Vikram.Kay Kay Menon(Siddrath) conveys more through his expressions and tone than this dialogs, once again proving his excellence as an actor.Chitrangada Singh(Geeta) ligths up every frame not only with her flawless beauty but, equally with her deep performance as well.she is simply brilliant. This movie sets the standard for excellence in cinema.A true masterpiece.
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9/10
A thousand wishes such as these , A near perfect cinema
psanu_in3 May 2005
In India there are only two periods which drove the youth into ideological confrontation , first during the freedom struggle and the second during 70s when the youth could not bear to see the fruits of freedom struggle being frittered away. Now this is where this movie treads.While there has been many movies on the 70s but not many has dealt with the subject as political as this.

To come to the story,this movie deals with 3 characters coming from 3 different backgrounds.Sidharth(K K Menon) coming from an influential and affluent family has seen it all .Fed up of the hypocrisy of elite he desperately wants out. Vikram(Shiny Ahuja) coming from a middle class family is uncomfortable at the elite circle but still wants a way into the circle. The third and central character is British educated south-Indian girl Geeta(Chitrangada singh) who is in the middle in love with Sidhharth but not quite comfortable with his ideology.

The story goes forward with movement of each character in its own line of ideal.The characterizations are superb .The mysterious Vikram always in love with Geeta , Sidhharth the ideologue ,and Geeta a woman torn between love,ideology,the bureaucrat husband are superbly etched. The turmoil of the 70s are almost authentic.

A must watch
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7/10
Swansong for unfulfilled dreams
Abhishek Bandekar22 April 2005
Swansong for unfulfilled dreams!

Hazaaron Khwaishen Aisi Dir- Sudhir Mishra Cast- KayKay Menon, Chitrangada Singh, Roshan 'Shiny' Ahuja, Ram Kapoor and Yashpal Sharma. Written by- Sudhir Mishra, Ruchi Narain and Shiv Subramanium. Rating- ***

At the heart of Sudhir Mishra's political chronicle about three individuals during the India of the 70's lies an inherent cry for reform that is valid even in the current age that we live in. 'Hazaaron Khwaishen Aisi' then, is not just an account of the Naxal movement that rose, survived, faltered and eventually died in the dictatorial times of Indira Gandhi. As the title rightly suggests, it is about a thousand such dreams that have been left unfulfilled, or soured if realized! Not since Gulzar has a director managed to weave a political story with such assurance.

Siddharth(KayKay Menon) is a young affluent collegian who mulls over the state of affairs with his friends while they dope! Their Gods- Bob Marley, Karl Marx and Che Guevera! Fired with a desire to change things around rather than being dogmatic about the crisis like his earlier generation, he enters the Naxal movement. Joining him on his quest is Geeta(Chitrangada Singh), a woman who has no views of her own but believes that the man she loves must be right! Add to the mix a removed individual who could be an island if he wished! Vikram(Shiny Ahuja) couldn't care less about his country, but is madly in love with Geeta. Destiny takes these individuals on three different routes over the next five years and brings them together again at a time when the country is in turmoil and an Emergency declared. Siddharth is now an active member of the Naxal faction of Bihar, while Geeta is in an unhappy marriage to an IAS officer. Vikram meanwhile has become a 'fixer' and moves in the corridors of power and fame, raising toasts at social dos. Geeta begins an affair with Siddharth and soon accompanies him in his pursuit. As the nation gets chaotic in the following years, Indira Gandhi systematically eliminates all her threats by any means possible and emerges victorious. Siddharth and Geeta are just two of the many sufferers of this clamping down by the government. It is here when Vikram decides to use his influence to rescue his unrequited love, and more importantly- her love!

It is no mean task to include three lives spanning a decade in a script that is merely 120 minutes long. Writers Shiv Subramanium, Ruchi Narain and Mishra himself, do a wonderful job at that. However, one can't be left feeling that the proceedings get too episodic at times. The erratic editing(Catherine D'hoir) doesn't help! Without being construed as a censure, this story is actually suited for a two season series where characters can be allowed to have a development graph and every single incident given enough attention to! But one doubts if in the orgy of saas-bahu serials, any soul will be prepared to spare some time for a serious venture such as this. Let it be!

Mishra doesn't fall into the trap of making 'Hazaaron Khwaishen Aisi' into a generic political movie. In fact, the movie doesn't even show us any political leaders of the time. What Mishra does is use the cinematic language of allowing characters to be allegorical references to the whole! Vikram's failed love and his eventual state at the climax is just that- an allegory to what we have been left with. Siddharth's disillusionment also acts as a failure of the whole movement. And amidst all of this, Geeta finds her true voice. Her character assumes shape after going through upheavals of love, hope, disappointment, exploitation and finally comprehension! Much like our country indeed! The recurring haunting track, 'Man yeh bawaraa' aptly captures the mood and ethos, and lingers in you long after you've left the movie.

It is worth noting that nearly the whole film is spoken in the English language. This is the second such experience after Bhansali's 'Black'(although Mishra's film was completed much earlier). Though I do not have anything against the use of English in Hindi films(it is a sign of our times), I can't help wondering whether the preference is out of necessity or simply because these young writers think in English! Also, the fact that we are seduced by Vikram- the blithest character leaves you with a sense of guilt. I'm not sure if Mishra intended that!

But such minor quibbles left aside, 'Hazaaron Khwaishen Aisi' is a movie that must be seen by every collegian…but sadly won't! They are too busy following the fads of the Johars and Chopras! And mind you, this movie is not an exercise in history lesson! There are some fine performances that adorn this cinematic jewel. KayKay is as he usually is- competent. In an underwritten character, he manages to do exceptionally well. Chitrangada Singh is eerily similar to the late Smita Patil. She is almost a reincarnate! Her emotional range aside, she is also a true Indian beauty- dark and elegant! Ram Kapoor as her husband leaves a definite impression. Eventually though, it is Shiny Ahuja's performance that rivets you the most. In a virtuoso display of talent, he announces himself to Bollywood. Whether it his cocky smirk, his dormant rage, his hidden anguish or his genuine irritation- Shiny is simply brilliant. Easily one of this year's best performances!

  • Abhishek Bandekar


Rating- ***

* Poor ** Average *** Good **** Very Good ***** Excellent

17th April, 2005
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7/10
A love story par excellence with a riveting music score
Vikrant Vats27 May 2005
When i walked in the hall for this film, I had no idea what's its like and who were the people acting in it. Sometimes life is full of surprises and I guess this was one of it. I am not writing an actual review but my rendition of thoughts the character portrayed in the film. Though the background was 1970's, the story and more importantly the relationships between the three characters was main framework of the film which is beyond time. My interest in the film was least to explore the technical issues or social issues that form the background of the film. What came out to me was the ritualistic attitude of love and how it transforms in a deep understanding between people.

The film shows a triangle of love between three characters which was very different from the one shown in Johars and Chopras chocolate covered candy floss that we get to see routinely. Coming to the story- one pretty girl Geeta (Chitrangada Singh) and two guys - Siddharth (KayKay Menon) and Vikram (Shiny Ahuja). While Geeta is in love with Siddharth, Vikram is in love with Geeta. But the film does not start from here nor does it ends there. Geeta is an educated South Indian urban girl who loves Siddartha for his socialist ideology while Vikram comes from a middle class semi-urban semi-rural Gandhian family who wants to grow in life and does not idealize with the socialist movement. And Siddarth has one point of agenda- socialist movement. As time moves on, the love equation of 3 characters moves with time except for Geeta love for Siddarth and Vikram love for Geeta. As a result their life travels from Delhi to Bihar in peculiar situations each with their own equilibrium. Coming out from an unhappy marriage with an alcoholic IAS officer, Geeta moves to Bihar where she discovers not only her love for Siddarth but also an equal parallel love for the socialist movement. At the same time, Vikram rises in the corridors of power as a deal maker. With sudden declaration of emergency by Indira Gandhi, the situations and backdrop becomes raw and bloody. How each of these characters react in these situations perhaps defines what each of them felt what love was all about? There is a sudden twist at the end of the film which perhaps describes how each of the three characters grows as human beings. It's a life time treat and if you can watch the characters through your heart, you will find this film soul stirring. Another important highlight of this film is the music - beautiful poetry by Pratish Nandy, vocals by Shubha Mudgal, Swanand Kirkire and Shobha Joshi. Some excellent scores are "Hazaron Khwaishen Aisi", based on the famous ghazals by Mirza Ghalib and Swanand Kirkire's "Bavra Mann" which comes as a backdrop at all the significant points of the film taking the audience to even greater heights. A must watch for all the ones who would want to know what love is……..
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9/10
Superb exhibition of a passionate story ! ! !
Rajesh Da Scorp20 July 2006
Although This film was released in 2003, I got to see this movie only in 2005. The reason being the film was never released in my city (Coimbatore, Tamil nadu) and I saw it through VCD. Almost immediately, when it started, it pulled me in and when I finished up this film, I felt like a huge blow has hit my head ! ! I liked it very much.

Kay kay menon, Shiny Ahuja and Chitrangda Singh have given a wonderful piece of acting. The relationship between all three of them has been shown clearly and in a very neat manner. The story takes the viewer through the period before, during and after the emergency declaration by Indira Gandhi. The turn of tides the three people experience in their life, forms the backbone of the story.

The best thing to be appreciated in this film is the representation of romance which Ahuja is having on Chitrangda singh. He knows very well that she is not loving him , but even then, he has a soft corner for her throughout this film, and ultimately pays the price for it. This has been wonderfully shown here.

Apart from this, the kinda life the backward people are experiencing in the villages of Bihar has shown with striking reality ! ! If one takes a look at the film, he'll understand why Bihar is like what it is like today ! The music has to be really appreciated . Excellent background music has taken this film to new heights. The cinematography also has to be praised a lot, for , it gives the film a more serious look and registers the movie well in the minds of the viewer. The song that captured my mind was 'Bhavra Mann' at the start of the end credits. I love this song very much and it has become one of my all time favorites ! ! My final comment on this film : If u want reality to land a huge blow, go see it. It will change your whole attitude for at least a while, and will make u think.
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9/10
Best film in recent times
Pradeep Karavadi17 June 2006
Simply Mindblowing. After a long long time....or ....maybe never did I watch such homogeneously balanced political, realistic and romantic movie. The attention to detail for every part of the film demands laurels to the director - Sudir Mishar. Sudhir is successful in drafting a nearly perfect script, casting the perfect actors and executing it almost flawlessly in the backdrop of 70s Indian politics. What I wonder is how did he pull off filming two contrasting backdrops - one high cultured money minting society and the grass root level rural Bihar with such honesty. Had he compromised with the profanities used in the script....it would have not had that impact.

All the actors did a perfect job. The settings were very realistic, especially the bihar locations reminded me of my stay in UP during my graduation. That typical bhojpuri accent and the hard fact that, people there are literally 5000 years backward was depicted excellently. Anyone who has lived either in Bihar or UP would relate themselves to at least one incident shown in this movie.

On the other hand the high class Indian society is given equivalently good flair. The background music only adds to its royalty. Reference of Che Guevera, JimmiHendrix....only made the movie look more realistic. The hidden shocks of the Emergency of 70s was shown very well (I don't remember any Indian movie dealing this issue as boldly as this).

The contrasting characters of Kay Kay and Shiny clearly depicted the two diametric opposite views of Indian youth. A very good debating subject and a classic piece of art which makes the views think about the real problems of India. A must see if I may recommend.
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10/10
Thousands of wishes remain unfulfilled. Unfortunately not being anywhere near to making this film is one
nishith_dalal18 April 2005
It was Sudhir Mishra's name that dragged me to the theater. While buying the tickets I read the name Chitrangada Singh. That made my decision to watch the movie more firm. How could I forget the face I had seen once in a magazine. A face that was way, way beautiful than today's ash, etc. etc. And then the movie itself turned out beyond expectations. Not only the story and screenplay, the direction too is slick and the characters are so real. Especially Shiny and Chitrangada. Why doesn't every one make films like this one? Why? Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi leaves me with thousands of wishes yet unfulfilled. One of them is working under people such as Ruchi Narain and working under dazed amazement with people such as Chitrangada. (Filmi buffs! Here's is the true beauty). Thank you Sir Nandy and Rangita for producing moneys' real worth. Any vacancies at PNC or with Ruchi (as assistant in production, direction, just about anything...please count me in!) Thank you.
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8/10
Very good!
Sherazade12 May 2006
Warning: Spoilers
I would feel so ashamed if it turns out that I don't write that much about this film. I have been sifting through pages and pages of reviews (some people even wrote up to 8 long paragraphs each of reviews) which can only mean that the producers and writers and directors have done their job. A film that can get people talking and writing as much as they have with this one must be a very audacious and very well made one.

At first, I have to admit, I didn't know how I would get through the film, especially when I went into the song menu and there was only one listed. But as soon as the film begins, its intense subject begins to draw you in little by little. It begins in the late 50s when there was a lot of political uprising in India. Three young students namely; Geeta, Vikram and Sidharth are college co-eds as well as budding political activists who spend their days planning their next move, listening to imported rock music from the west and just getting themselves caught up in the same things college students do. Vikram, the not so privileged one of the three, one day takes a trip around various parts of India and documents his discoveries in letters that his sends to Geeta (whom he secretly is in love with) abroad. The friends all hook up once Geeta returns to India from the UK but it is evident that she does not share the same feelings for Vikram. Instead, she is in love with Sidharth and continues to pine after him, despite the obvious fact that he will and would always choose his quests over her. One day, Sidharth decides that he is going to journey into a remote village to live amongst the people and inspire them to stand up against the inequalities and brutalities that they have become accustomed to. His posse all begin to back out of the trip one by one and even Geeta tells him that she will not accompany him. This does not deter Sidharth as his mind is set. On the last night of his stay in the city, his wealthy family throws him a party and Geeta is clearly upset that her lover will be leaving. Vikram tries to comfort her but she allows herself to be lured away by Sidharth who takes her to a deserted room within his fathers mansion and makes love to her. Vikram watches from a window, heartbroken and the next day Sidharth embarks on his journey promising to return in 6 months. Naturally, he does not return but continues to communicate with Geeta via snail mail.

Years pass into the 70s and a chanced business meeting reunites Vikram (now a very wealthy and affluent business man) with Geeta (now married to a NRI drunkard she met while visiting the UK), sparks fly between the two but it is clear the Geeta has returned to India for one reason and that's to seek out Sidharth, which she does and begins to have an affair with him. This sets off a chain of tragic events that forever alters the life of the three friends.

There is a classic-tale of what goes around comes around beautifully woven into the rich fabric of this film. Vikram loves Geeta but she treats him poorly and walks all over his emotions, and Geeta loves Sidharth, who in turns treats her poorly and walks all over her emotions.

This film is a must watch for anyone who appreciates fine cinema, especially those who have lost faith in Bollywood.
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9/10
Wow!!
agsharma7 October 2005
What a movie!!! It's truly a delight to watch a "real" movie from bollywood circle. The fight between pragmatism and idealism is quite entertaining to watch. The sets, the make up, the style of speech of the 70s is quite authentic. My favourite part was that of Chitrangada Singh. Her devotion to her idealist lover (Kay Kay Menon) was at odds with her obvious agreement with her pragmatic suitor (Shiney Ahuja). A true portrayal of the Indian political scene in the 70s. I thought those were the most intense scenes of the movie. And it is time to tell the world about the true Sanjay Gandhi. Not the mama's boy but the power broker. Loved the movie!!
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10/10
Greatest Film made with people from Hindi Films 'Industry'.
Rahul Sharma27 June 2005
Well, The film is just Great and definitely a treat for real Cinema lovers. It is so different and so real that a parallel from Bollywood or for that matter any other Indian film fraternity is very difficult to find if not impossible. Reavelation is definitely Chitrangda Singh. Comparisons with the acting skills or looks of Smita Patil and Shabana Aazmi is inevitable. However my favorite was Shiny Ahuja, whose character is so multi-layered and so richly carved out that it is nothing but real!!! Kay Kay is as ever at his best, and our biggest Actor in the 'reckoning'. A wholly new Genre and a TREAT of a Movie to Watch!!!!!!!
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8/10
Almost Flawless!
Himanshu Desai4 August 2011
Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi is a hard - hitting saga of love,politics,rebellion youths. Rebellion for life , love and country. The movie challenges you to handle all of it in a span of two hours. And believe me, after two hours you feel something worth of your good time.

The theme of movie is very clear and apt to the title. And the title , for which i would rate it a perfect ten is an adaption from Ghalib's couplet.

Shiny Ahuja is apt here making balances from underplaying role as a lover and an aggressive businessman.Kay Kay Menon is in top form here.The actress Chitrangadha Singh is the modern Smita Patil in true sense.

Ram Kapoor,Saurabh Shukla,Dibyendu Bhattacharya and Yashpal Sharma are notable.

The story by Sudhir Mishra,Ruchi Narain and Shiv Kumar Subramaniam is a sheer gem.To include so many sub-plots one needs to be a prolific writer. And the writer's desk is of top notch here.Even the plot of the movie is so powerful and appealing itself.

The editing by Catherine D'Hoir(who is good at sound department in Hollywood) is tight and strong.The film is engaging right from the beginning till the end.Cinematography is a pleasure. Contrasts of urban and rural India are well shot.

Probably the only area where the film drops back.Apart from classical songs like Man Baawra and Baawraa Man Shantanu Moitra fails to captivate ears.Background Score is okay.

The movie is surely one of the best we have ever seen from Sudhir Mishra's bag.
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10/10
A movie that raises many questions and answers them in an inevitably simple way
Igu_Soni20 August 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Have you ever watched a movie with one girl and two guys, one guy a stud and the other a nice guy at heart, and in which the girl tries to have a relationship with the stud and ends up realising that she should be with the nice guy?

I'm guessing, yes. Well, imagine a movie with a problem at its heart. The characters: one girl(Chitrangda Singh), two guys(Kay Kay Menon and Shiny Ahuja). The girl loves the man who tries to solve the problem(Kay Kay). The other man(Shiny) - who's poorer - feels that those are all rich kids' games. He is, at heart, a nice man, but a practical man. I won't say any more, but you should have figured out by now what the title of this review means.

It isn't, however, just about the characters. It's also an insightful treatise on society. For example, very near the beginning, there is a scene where Kay Kay's character realises the weight of tradition, an idea that comes back later in the film. The landlord's son has raped a lower-caste woman and the untouchables are all up in arms, when the landlord gets a heart attack and is cured, by the untouchables.

But what really struck me about the movie was that the characters spoke English like...well, human beings. In most Hindi movies nowadays the characters' English accents makes me cringe, bringing up words in my mind that I won't reproduce here.

So, on the whole, a very very good movie with a lot of brilliant scenes in chronological order that don't feel like part of the story - though they are -, as being part of an overarching story would ruin them.
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9/10
One of the best movies ever
Sreetama Bhattacharya7 September 2008
I have hardly seen such an original film which deals with three most difficult subjects in one film. Hats off to Sudhir Mishra! His command is seen everywhere. It was like a poetry, a stunning love story. The three characters were deliciously complex and romantic. Their growth and fall were a treat to watch. Actually, the script is the real hero of the film. The music,cinematography were true to the script. And boy! Geeta, the real protagonist of the film,is a revelation. This lady, Chitrangada Singh is just superb.Rarely, we get to see such an intelligent as well as beautiful actress on Indian screen.But, here again, the credit goes to the director. Also, politically, this film touches the right chord. The political undercurrent throughout the film makes us part of that turbulent yet romantic era bursting with ideology.

Only thing is I am not very sure why this film was made in English.Maybe,because, the characters and also the director thinks in English. At the same time,I think it makes a movie elitist. Abother thing, I don't agree with the plot summary here.Geeta was never romantically involved with Vikram. It was always Siddharth on her mind. So, this tension between what you can get and what you want from life is what makes this film so special.
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10/10
A thousands wishes
ashona11131 May 2008
A thousands wishes like this, each one takes your life. A thousand cravings arise and still too less.Three flawless characters in post independent India struck by poverty, illiteracy, riots and corruption find their love triangular way out from University Education with completely different personalities, background and ambitions. The portrayal of Vikram's love for Geeta and Geeta's love for Sidhharth and Sidharth's dedication for his ideals of extremism can be easily compared with each other and still at the top of all that history could ever see. The movie depicts platonic LOVE intertwined with the story line which deals with the tragedies in modern India and in some or other way with each three of them. I don't know why but I tend to remember American History X while thinking about Hazaaron Khwaishen Aisi, most probably by the untouched levels of brilliance of flawless acting of flawless characters achieved by the Shiny, Kay Kay and Chitrangada. Believe me it could easily have been made its milestones with the name Indian History X. But still Sudhir Mishra knows what he wants to show and for this matter "Hazaaron Khwaishen Aisi" tells it all. The way romance has been portrayed with the love chemistry is breath taking.
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7/10
A Different Movie from Bollywood Standards.
srikar24 January 2008
This type of film is a rarity in Bollywood. But what a film ! The plot of the film is set in the mid-1970's in India. It was the period where emergency was declared and several senior Congress politicians were charged with corruption. Hardly any movies were made which will give us a look at India as it was after independence, a young democratic country; most of the movies being made on the freedom struggle. So this movie comes as a breathe of fresh air. It is due to this film that we realize the social, economic problems through the lives of 3 young college graduates.

The direction of this film is intense and very well directed. Director Sudhir Mishra must be given a pat on his back. Although this movie was not a major commercial success, I guess Sudhir must have known this from the start. The fact the he went ahead shows his commitment to good cinema.

This brings us to the actors. All the 3 protagonists in this movie were very good and convincing in their roles. The passion between Geeta (Chitrangada) and Siddharth (Kay-Kay) seemed genuine; so was the pain of Vikram' (Shiny Ahuja) as a heart broken lover. It reflected upon the changing India, who was shedding her inhibitions at the turn of the decade.

One shortcoming is that the film does not explain in detail why the condition are the way they are portrayed in the movie. So after the film the viewer would have just got a whiff of what was present during those times of turbulence, not the reason why.

The music was captivating and is totally in-tune with the sentiments being portrayed.

All in all a different movie and a thinking movie. If you want to let your feet down and relax this might not be the movie, but if you want watch serious meaningful movie this is for you. Kudos to Sudhir Mishra.
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8/10
This has stunned me!!
Prateek Dham17 July 2007
Well,I've got no words for it!Simply putting it,this movie would surprise you because you haven't even heard of the director Sudhir Mishra(unless you've seen "Chameli"),this movie will shock you because of its realistic storyline shown in a simple yet powerful manner,and it would stun you to the core because of its intensity and the rawness quotient.This was a story that was begging to be told.Despite movies like Vaastav and Kurukshetra,Indian politics was still not depicted as it should have been.This movie has broken all barriers.The performances have everything to write home about.Shiny Ahuja shines among all.Chitrangda Singh proves that a beauty has got brains too,and Kay Kay Menon is the dark-horse of Indian cinema,this performance tells the story.Watch this movie and experience it taking over you.
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10/10
an excellent film to come out of the bollywood stable
midnightdewdrops883 March 2007
Warning: Spoilers
This movie was almost ignored by the mainstream. This movie, however in all aspects deserved a little more respect and recognition. Sudhir Mishra starts out by bringing down Pandit Nehru's "A tryst with destiny" speech, pointing out the horological fallacy in it. The story revolves around the lives of three teenagers of St. Stephens growing up in the intellectually charged up atmosphere of Delhi in the 1970s. It starts off in 1969 in Calcutta which is at height of the Naxalite movement. Siddharth Tyabji (Kay Kay Menon), the son of a retired judge, is a radical activist greatly influenced by the movement and the revolutionary ideas of Che Guevara and Fidel Castro and preaches idealism and struggle at the grassroots level. He returns to Delhi from Calcutta with his resolve to change the world all the more strengthened. Geeta Rao (Chitrangdha Singh) simply adores him for his ideas and although does not want to be a direct participant in his struggles, she is always by his side. Her idealism draws her to revolutionary ideas, but she is torn by her need for the softer, more materialistic things of life, for love and a family. This constant pull shapes her life, her choices, and her final destination. She is shown as the most human of all the characters, making her the most believable and most admirable. Siddharth loves Geeta as much as he loves the revolution and eventually leaves Geeta to go and live in the villages of Bihar and be an active part of the Naxalbari movement. Vikram (Shiney Ahuja) hails from the lower end of the great middle class. His father is a staunch Gandhian. Vikram resents his father for still clinging onto his ideals. His desire to climb the social ladder is surpassed only by his fiery passion for Geeta. She makes him yearn for making himself successful, and that is what drives her away from him. His choices can be understood only in the context of the complex and unfulfilled relationship he shares with Geeta. His love is never requited in the true sense of the word. Nevertheless, he is the one who finally brings meaning back into Geeta's life. Both Vikram and Siddharth write frequent letters to Geeta. It is through this personal correspondence that we are able to get under the emotions of the two characters. Siddharth professes his unflinching belief in the peasants' movement and in the idea of revolution and comes forward as a strong-willed person raring to fight the demons in the world. Vikram, on the other hand, portrays an image of a self-centered person looking for a way to manipulate the system in more ways than one to add to his personal wealth. Siddharth and his friends decide to leave Delhi and go to Calcutta to join the Naxalite movement and eventually get deeply immersed in the movement operating from the Bihar countryside. When asked, Geeta refuses to go with them. She marries an IAS officer in due course. Vikram by this time has acquired his share of wealth and fame and is engaged too. After a chance encounter Vikram and Geeta start meeting often. He finds out that Geeta is still meeting Siddharth on her unexplained visits to the Bihar countryside. It is evident that Geeta is unhappy in her personal life. She divorces her husband and goes to live with Siddharth. Here she finds her peace taking adult literacy lessons. They marry and have a child. It is in these times that 1975 dawns and the Emergency is enforced. The Emergency brings in dark times. There is an attempt to brutally silence the Naxalite movement. Siddharth is captured, Geeta raped. Vikram's father is arrested. Forced vasectomies are performed on an unwilling public. Geeta is saved by her ex-husband but when she asks him to get back Siddharth too he refuses. She turns to Vikram, who agrees to bring back the love of the woman he loves. But in a dramatic turn of events he is involved in an accident after which he finds himself next to Siddharth in a makeshift hospital ward under police watch. When Siddharth escapes from the ward with the help of his friends one night, the police suspect Vikram. He is severely assaulted by the police thereby suffering serious head injuries but is saved in the nick of time. In the end Geeta and Vikram have moved to a village where Geeta takes care of him. Sudhir Mishra doesn't eulogize the way of the revolution; all we see, initially, is a bunch of dopers and their political friends with communist leanings, discussing Marx, Castro, et al. Sudhir Mishra succeeds by showing things as they happened. People who chased their revolutionary ideas were either left disillusioned or lost their ideals and the writers do not mince their words on this aspect. That they chased such a quite impossible dream to change the world is by itself a fascinating subject; and is portrayed profoundly, and nostalgically too. The character of Vikram is so seamlessly written that as the movie proceeds, we see his character develop much more than the clichéd selfish cardboard character we are being served with in movies generally. In the process, it's the other male protagonist, the idealistic Siddharth, who appears a bit too upright for the empathy of this generation, but true to those times nevertheless. That's why we don't see the human side of him, with all its intrinsic flaws, until the very end, where he is left disillusioned and renounces his revolutionary ideas. Throughout the film he struggles with the repressive authorities and the demons within him. However in the classic chase scene at the end his sudden realization that he is after all human has a dramatic effect, suddenly bringing the other side of his nature into sharp perspective. The film talks of issues of youth disillusionment and their eventual alienation. HKA tells us that only does running after those crazy dreams make them worth having in the first place.
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8/10
less of an analysis,more of an after-thought
comeundone5 March 2006
i saw this gem of a movie without any pretensions.i am presently an university student,and a mute spectator to the slogans and rallies of my politically and socially conscious ''contemporaries''.a few days back we could not attend lectures in peace because of these people ''concerned'' with ''betterment''.i honestly felt like tying them up and gagging their big mouths and force them to watch ''Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi''.i have had my fill of political ''fancies'' way back in high school,when Marx seemed right and M.K.Gandhi totally wrong.but things changed, and like Kay Kay Menon's character i realised in college what it means and feels just to SURVIVE.i know that most of my politically active mates would be working in MNCs or at least more ironically under the wings of the same govt. by the year 2010, that they are up against today.only a few will really head towards the villages as teachers or social workers.perhaps no one by that time.all the young desires boiling our blood today,will be frozen when we face the world alone only with the feeble support of degrees.this movie moves me more towards realism than reading today's newspaper.recommended for people whose favourite movie is NOT ''Kuch Kuch Hota Hain''(a college movie.no doubt) or even the breakthrough flick ''Dil Chahta Hain''.
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