Bollywood-ish

Friday, 29 April 2011

Half Ticket

Directed by: Kalidas
Starring: Kishore Kumar, Madhubala, Pran
Released: 1962
Verdict: destroy every copy – horrible – bad – whatever – flawed but enjoyable - good – great – amazing


Why did my copy of this had to be SO bad? Not so much in quality (though even there was much left to be desired), but somebody mindlessly edited out many scenes and the rest was quite often cut in half, leaving the viewer puzzled. Thankfully even like that I managed to understand the story and the situations the main hero gets into.

Kishore Kumar plays Vijay, a completely useless son of a rich industrialist. He is sent to school (I´ll not comment on how ridiculous he looks as a student) but instead of studying he is creating riots among other students and every other day he threatens the authorities with going on strike, until his father finally decides to také him away from the college. But what to do with such a good-for-nothing person? Heading the advice of a friend Vijay´s father decides that maybe when he is married his son shall mend his ways. And so he starts looking for a suitable bride. But Vijay sabottages all the attempts and disgraces his family in the process. And then finally the cup of patience overflows and Vijay is driven away from home.
Adorable "Munna"
Not skilled in anything but clever enough Vijay decides to go to Bombay and start a new life, but at the station he finds out he does not have enough money for a ticket. After tricking a fat child he steals his clothes and manages successfullypass himself off as a child and buy a half ticket. Unknown to him he has got a diamond in his pocket. That was inserted there by a diamond smuggler (played by Pran) for „safe-keeping“, but the smuggler soon realizes it just might be the biggest mistake of his shady career. „Munna“ as Vijay now calls himself disappears from his sight as soon as they board the train. There Vijay runs into stunningly beautiful Rajnidevi (heavenly, heavenly Madhubala), and she, considering him a mentally ill but harmless person, offers her help.... And „Munna“ is sure to need it, because the diamond is still in his pocket!
Madhubala ( *sigh* )
One can only dream of such honest, nice comedy to be shot today. The humour is simple and pure, nothing forced or vulgar. The situations „Munna“ gets into while running away from „Chacha“ are hilarious, and though they fill pretty much the whole second part of the film, they do not bore at all. The film uses truly all possible means of comedy from sarcasm, irony, people being silly to people mistaking words etc. The king here is Kishore Kumar. His timing is brilliant and his expressions and dialogue delivery priceless. I was a bit bothered about him pretending to be a child, because he did no way looked like one, but fortunatelly later it turns out he did not pretend to be a „child“, but a mentally disturbed person, so it does make sense. Madhubala adds her incomparable charm to the film, and the comic scenes she is given are just as delightful, sadly there are not many.

Music is beautiful, my favourite song has to be hilariously (and beautifully at the same time) picturized Woh Ek Nigah Kya Mili, during which a very young, vivacious Helen makes a special appearance in the film.

The finale is completely over the top, action packed and hilarious – both intentinally and unintetionally, the latter because of „special effects“ that makes one smile benevolently when watched today. This was my first Kishore Kumar film, and I definitely am going to watch more in the future. I just hope they shall be as good as this one.

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