Aah (film)

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Aah film.jpg
Theatrical poster
Directed by Raja Nawathe
Produced by Raj Kapoor
Written by Inder Raj Anand
Starring Raj Kapoor
Music by Shankar Jaikishan
Cinematography Jaywant Pathare
Edited by G.G. Mayekar
Release date
  • 1 May 1953 (1953-05-01)
Running time
150 minutes
Country India
Language Hindi
Box office 70,00,000[1]

Aah is a 1953 black and white Bollywood romantic drama film starring Raj Kapoor and Nargis in lead roles. The film was produced by Raj Kapoor and directed by Raja Nawathe. This was Nawathe's first independent directorial venture. He had previously worked as assistant director to Kapoor in Aag (1948), Barsaat (1949) and Awaara (1951).

The film was rated "Below Average" at the box office[1] but has various hit songs like "Raja Ki Aayegi Baaraat", "Aaja Re Ab Mera Dil Pukara" and "Jaane Na Nazar". The song "Chhoti Si Yeh Zindagani" sung by Mukesh was also picturised on him. Subsequently, the film was later dubbed in Tamil as Avan and Telugu as Prema Lekhalu .[2]


Raj Raibahadur (Raj Kapoor) lives a wealthy lifestyle with his father, a widowed businessman. One day Raj is sent to work at the countryside Saraswati Dam. His father one day visits him and tells him how his deceased mother wished that he be married to Chandra (played by Vijayalaxmi), the daughter of his rich family friend. Raj decides to write a letter to Chandra which she completely ignores. But Chandra's younger sister Neelu (Nargis) acknowledges the letter and responds to it in Chandra's name. After few letters Raj and Neelu fall in love, but Raj is still unaware that it is Neelu who writes to him. Just then Raj is diagnosed with tuberculosis, the same disease that killed his mother. Raj decides to pretend that he never loved Neelu and also insists that she should marry his physician friend, Dr. Kailash (Pran). He also flirts with Chandra to make Neelu believe that he does not love her. Chandra decides to end the suffering of her sister, who is sobbing for her love-loss. Upon learning the truth, Neelu accepts Raj as he is. Miraculously, Raj also turns well and both lead for a happy life.

Theme and plot change[edit]

The theme of the tragic hero and the sufferings of the heroine was inspired from Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay's famous novel Devdas, which has also been inspiration to various other films.[3]

The end of the film originally showed Neelu marrying Dr. Kailash at Raj's insistence; Raj dies while Neelu's wedding procession is passing by. But at the premiere, Kapoor realised that this film would not work. Kapoor said,

The atmosphere in an auditorium is like a living, palpitating thing. It told me again and again: "Your picture is a flop."[4]

The end of the film was then changed from a tragic one to the happy one, but the change destroyed the thematic unity of the text. Bunny Reuben, who wrote Kapoor's biography Raj Kapoor, The Fabulous Showman, gives his rationale for the change: "The film had some of Shankar-Jaikishan's loveliest music, and a 'Devdas'-ian tragic ending which was changed to the conventional happy ending because the film didn't do well in its first release."[3]


  • Nargis as Neelu Rai
  • Raj Kapoor as Raj Raibahadur
  • Vijayalaxmi as Chandra Rai
  • Pran as Dr. Kailash
  • Ramesh Sinha
  • Bhupendra Kapoor
  • Leela Mishra as Mrs. Rai
  • Rashid Khan as Dr. Yusuf
  • Sohanlal
  • Kusum
  • Mukesh as Carriage Driver (Cameo role)


Composed by the musical duo Shankar Jaikishan.

Hindi songs for the film are written by Shailendra and Hasrat Jaipuri.

No. Title Lyrics Singer(s) Length
1. "Jaane Na Nazar" Hasrat Jaipuri Lata Mangeshkar, Mukesh 03:38
2. "Jhanan Jhanan Jhanan" Hasrat Jaipuri Lata Mangeshkar 02:52
3. "Jo Main Jaanti" Shailendra Lata Mangeshkar, Mukesh 03:25
4. "Raat Andheri Door Savera" Hasrat Jaipuri Mukesh 03:02
5. "Aaja Re Ab Mera Dil Pukara" Hasrat Jaipuri Lata Mangeshkar, Mukesh 03:44
6. "Yeh Shyam Ki Tanhaiyan" Shailendra Lata Mangeshkar 03:23
7. "Sunte The Naam" Shailendra Lata Mangeshkar 03:06
8. "Raja Ki Aayegi Baaraat" Shailendra Lata Mangeshkar 03:29
9. "Chhoti Si Yeh Zindagani" Shailendra Mukesh 03:34

Tamil songs for the film are written by Kambadasan.

No. Title Lyrics Singer(s) Length
1. "Kann Kaanaadhadhum Manam Kannduvidum" Kambadasan Jikki, A. M. Rajah 03:38
2. "Jalakku Jalakku Jalakku Jalakku" Kambadasan Jikki 02:52
3. "Aahaa Naan Indru Arindhukonden" Kambadasan Jikki 03:25
4. "Kaarirul Neram Kaalaiyo Dhooram" Kambadasan A. M. Rajah 03:02
5. "Anbe Vaa" Kambadasan Jikki, A. M. Rajah 03:44
6. "Ekaanthamaam Immaalaiyil" Kambadasan Jikki 03:23
7. "Un Perai Ketten Thendralthanil Naan" Kambadasan Jikki 03:06
8. "Kalyaana Oorvalam Varum" Kambadasan Jikki 03:29
9. "Minnal Polaagum Indha Vaazhkkaiye" Kambadasan A. M. Rajah 03:34

Telugu songs for the film are written by Aarudhra.[5] Amongst them Panditlo Pellauthunnadi song is an evergreen track played at many marriage functions even today.

No. Title Lyrics Singer(s) Length
1. "Neevewaravo Chiru Naawulato" Aarudhra Jikki, A. M. Rajah 03:38
2. "Jalakku Jalakku Jalakku Jalakku" Aarudra Jikki 02:52
3. "Ghallu... Gajjela Sangeetam" Aarudra Jikki 03:25
4. "Vidi Rakasi" Aarudra A. M. Rajah 03:02
5. "Raaraada Madhi Ninne" Aarudra Jikki, A. M. Rajah 03:44
6. "Ekaanthamu Saayantramu" Aarudra Jikki 03:23
7. "Neeku Purtigaa Telusunugaa" Aarudra Jikki 03:06
8. "Panditlo Pellauthunadhi" Aarudra Jikki 03:29
9. "Padu Jeevithamu" Aarudra A. M. Rajah 03:34


  1. ^ a b "Box office 1953". Boxofficeindia.com. Retrieved 14 Feb 2012. 
  2. ^ "Her tantalising voice will live forever...". The Hindu. Aug 20, 2004. Retrieved Feb 18, 2013. 
  3. ^ a b Vijay Mishra (2002). Bollywood Cinema: Temples of Desire. Routledge. pp. 104–105. ISBN 0-415-93015-4. 
  4. ^ Bunny Reuben (1995). Raj Kapoor, The Fabulous Showman: An intimate biography. Indus. p. 108. ISBN 81-7223-196-2. 
  5. ^ "Premalekhalu (1953)". Ghantasala Galamrutamu (in Telugu). Kolluri Bhaskara Rao. Retrieved 3 March 2016. 

External links[edit]