Anand | Chicago Reader


Indian screen idol Rajesh Khanna is the title character, a terminally ill man whose positive energy and lust for life profoundly influence a melancholy physician who makes his acquaintance (Amitabh Bachchan). This 1970 feature by Hrishikesh Mukherjee (a protege of Bimal Roy) was part of a trend toward greater realism and exploration of middle-class life in Indian cinema, though its disease-of-the-week plot and melodramatic flourishes (copious tears, horrified trumpet blasts) will seem comical to Western viewers. Despite the film's technical limitations—more than one scene is marred by the camera grinding away audibly—there are some genuine moments, and the pairing of the two actors is noteworthy: three years later Bachchan would explode into the public consciousness as the alienated hero of Zanjeer, hastening Khanna's descent at the box office. In Hindi with subtitles. 122 min.


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