Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi
|Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi|
Movie poster for Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi
|Directed by||Sudhir Mishra|
|Produced by||Rangita Pritish Nandy|
|Written by||Ruchi Narain
Shiv Kumar Subramaniam
Sanjay Chauhan (Hindi dialogue)
|Starring||Kay Kay Menon
|Music by||Shantanu Moitra|
|Cinematography||Ravi K. Chandran|
|Editing by||Catherine D'Hoir|
Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi a 2003 Indian film made by director Sudhir Mishra in 2003, but released in 2005. Set against the backdrop of the Indian Emergency, the movie tells the story of three youngsters in the 70s, when India was undergoing massive social and political changes. The movie's title is taken from the couplet of Urdu poet Mirza Ghalib.
It went to 12 film festivals in 6 months including Turkey, Estonia, River to River (Florence), Berlin, Edinburgh, Washington, Goa, Bite The Mango (Bradford), Commonwealth (Manchester), India (Los Angeles), Dallas, and Pacific Rim (California).
The film opens at St. Stephen's College in Dehli with the story of three students, Kay Kay Menon (as Siddharth Tyabji), Chitrangada Singh (as Geeta Rao) and Shiney Ahuja (as Vikram Malhotra). Siddharth is a driven revolutionary who dreams of bringing a revolution in the state of Bihar that will end the caste-based discrimination there; bring social justice, and, change the society for the better. Geeta is a London returned, South Indian girl in love with the firebrand Siddharth. She has led a very sheltered life thus far, and is yet to explore the terrain of the Indian socio-political landscape. While she finds Siddharth's Naxalite rhetoric attractive, she is not sure if she can whole-heartedly subscribe to it. And every time they come to point of choice, Siddharth chooses his ideology over his love for her thus breaking her heart time and again. Vikram is a middle-class boy who dreams of making it big, whatever the cost. He is particularly afflicted by his father's Gandhian ideas, but irritated and frustrated at the same time, seeing his father's way of life as ineffective in bringing about a change.
Siddharth leaves for Bihar to bring about a revolution; Geeta leaves for Oxford to get a degree, and Vikram sets up an office in Delhi.
A few years later, Vikram is a fixer in the power corridors of government, Geeta is married to a promising IAS Officer Arun Mehta (played by Ram Kapoor) who, as Geeta says "has it all", and Siddharth is still trying to foment a revolution. But all is not as it seems. Below the mask of happiness, each is quite unhappy. Vikram has 'made it', but he still cannot get Geeta, the love of his life. Geeta is married, but she still meets Siddharth on the sly, cheating on her husband.
Eventually, Geeta gets a divorce from her husband because of her love for Siddharth, even though she does not want to hurt her husband's feelings. Geeta joins Siddharth in the village where she starts to teach the children of the village, whilst the police repeatedly try to hunt down her now husband, Siddharth. She bears a child with Siddharth whom she sends to London to her parents since she believes he deserves more than to grow up in the remote village.
Eventually the police round up the entire village, capturing Siddharth and Geeta for intent to cause unrest and brutally assault them both, fabricating a story of a villagers' riot to explain their injuries. Geeta is soon bailed out of prison by her now influential ex-husband, while Siddharth, on the run, is shot by the police and admitted to a local hospital and is placed under arrest while Geeta believes him to have been killed.
Vikram, who has been consoling Geeta and taking care of her during the absences of her ex-husband and of Siddharth, is informed that Siddharth is still alive. Vikram travels to meet Siddharth and release him using his influential contacts, however he has an accident on the way and is admitted to the same hospital as Siddharth. During the night, local Naxalites break into the crude hospital and free Siddharth while Vikram still lays there. The next morning, the policemen in charge of guarding Siddharth, frustrated, accuse Vikram of having conspiring to free Siddharth and beat him up. After discovering that he is a man of influence, they resolve to kill him and dump his body to make it unrecognisable. Vikram, terrifed, attempts to escape but is chased down, however the policeman finds that the Naxalites have emptied his revolver, and they beat Vikram up with an iron rod. Soon, the police chief and a local politician come looking for Vikram and are able to stop the policemen from killing him.
Vikram suffers heavy brain damage and is rendered handicapped, while Siddharth tells Geeta that he intends to leave but Geeta refuses to accompany him. Siddharth has moved beyond simply trying to foment a revolution, and is prepared to delay it because he feels that the people are not ready in spite of their saying otherwise. He goes to London to study medicine and through a letter, voices his anguish and disillusion with the idea of revolution, he writes saying "I hope the mysteries of the human body will be less confusing" (in reference to his studying medicine and quitting the revolution).
The last scenes shows Geeta going back to continue working in the village and taking care of the handicapped Vikram, who can no longer speak. The movie ends with Vikram writing "I love you Geeta" on a rock, as they both sit by a placid lake and watch the sunset.
The story revolves around three friends, Siddharth Tyabji (Kay Kay Menon), Geeta Rao (Chitrangada Singh) and Vikram Malhotra (Shiny Ahuja) and how each tries to find his or her purpose in life.
Siddharth is the son of a retired judge, born and raised in luxury and privilege. But he is attracted by the communist movement, especially the Naxalite movement of West Bengal. He sees the social inequalities around him, and is convinced that a communist revolution is the answer to all the problems. That he lives in wealth, smokes pot and listens to Western rock while espousing the ideas of Vladimir Lenin and Mao Zedong does not affect this decision.
Geeta Rao, meanwhile, is from a middle class South Indian extended family. As such, she is a sheltered girl. She is in love with Siddharth and his firebrand personality. But while she likes to hear him talk of revolution, she herself is not so sure about taking part in one.
Vikram is from a middle-class family, with a Gandhian father who is an idealist. Vikram is very ambitious, and wants to be successful, by hook or by crook. He is in love with Geeta, but his love is not reciprocated.
- Akhil Mishra ... Vikram's Father
- Kay Kay Menon ... Siddharth Tyabji
- Chitrangada Singh ... Geeta Rao
- Shiney Ahuja ... Vikram Malhotra
- Yashpal Sharma ... Randhir Singh
- Saurabh Shukla ... Bihari Constable
- Anupam Shyam ... Jhanda Singh
- Satyajit Sharma ... Maharaja's elder son
- Sanjay Singh ... Sanjay Singh
- Director:: Sudhir Mishra
- Story: Sudhir Mishra
- Producer: Rangita Pritish Nandy
- Music: Shantanu Moitra
- Cinematography: Ravi K. Chandran
- Lyrics: Mirza Ghalib, Swanand Kirkire, Ajay Jhingran, Bhikhari Thakur & Pushpa Patel
- Executive Producer: Sushil Datta
Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi had a poor run in theatres mostly due to its novel theme and art cinema qualities. It was, however, critically acclaimed.
But the film got good reviews. Avijit Ghosh reviewed the film in The Telegraph, Kolkata. He wrote:
"Every generation needs something to sell. In the 60s, they peddled revolution. The smart ones kept long sideburns, grew longer beards, got drunk on country liquor, wore Lal Salaam knickers and spewed dialectical materialism to pretty girls who often lost their hearts and virginity (not always in that order) to them. Then both proceeded to study history of mentalities in Yale and got married. Preferably not to each other.
The honest ones left for the countryside to the backwaters of Bihar and the killing fields of Bengal to manufacture a peasants' insurrection. They bared their bottoms in the paddy fields, taught Marx primer to starving farmers and battled both police and upper caste reactionaries with countrymade guns. Some died; most were reborn either as NGOs or professors of social science.
Director Sudhir Mishra's Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi is a post-dated love letter to that lost generation. Through the disparate but crisscrossing lives of two men and a woman, Mishra (Is Raat Ki Subah Nahin, Chameli) tells you the collective story of a restless generation with a thousand desires and one desperate dream. And he asks why the finest young men and women in the best of urban colleges got obsessed with the idea of changing the world. And, why even in that season of Daniel Cohn-Bendit and Bob Dylan, some preferred to join Youth Congress.
The movie ploughs through the mindscape of its protagonists. Why Vikram, the son of a Gandhian, hates the idealists and becomes the finest fixer in Delhi. Why Siddharth, a retired judge's son, gives up the good life to raise a revolution. And, you wonder if Geeta, the sincere and refined England-returned girl, really loves Sidharth, or just the idea of the man she thinks he is. It's all told with craft and control, with humour and that dirty word, passion. And in the end we have an intelligent, imploring movie that leaves you twisted like a cork and wistful like an old woman. And, you feel jealous of its characters ' of the lives they lived in those angry seasons of the almost- young.
HKA wouldn't have been the same without Shantanu Moitra's blend of folksy-classical music that helps the film travel inside your skin. Or, without its actors, all superbly sensitive. What stays in memory though is debutante Chitrangda's face: a complex map of beauty, mystery and symmetry with the colours of the setting sun.
There are a thousand reasons to watch Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi. But enjoy it as a last anthem for a generation who knew how to believe. Watch it holding the hand of a woman you have loved and lost. And it would be nice if you have drunk some rotten whisky before."
- Baanwara Mann (Male): Swanand Kirkire
- Baanwara Mann (Female - Part 1): Shubha Mudgal
- Baanwara Mann (Female - Part 2): Shubha Mudgal
- Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi (Part 1): Shubha Mudgal
- Hazaaron Khwaishein Aisi (Part 2): Shubha Mudgal
- Mann Yeh Baanwara : Swanand Kirkire & Ajay Jhingran
- Hey Sajani : Swanand Kirkire
- Na Aaye Piya (Thumri) : Shobha Joshi
- My Sharona: The Knack