6 comments on “For the 22nd Death Anniversary of the Exceptional Pakistani Dancer-Actress Named Rani…

  1. These are some great dances. Thinking (based on the fact that it was about a tawaif) I didn’t expect to see Anjuman be such a mix between modern cabaret dancer styles and traditional styles. I definitely need to see this one now … (Bonus: Waheed Murad still looks like his 60s romantic hero self.) I admire you for digging into Punjabi songs, dancers, etc. … for some reason I find that genre intimidating. I shared this article on my other social media pages, so maybe that will bring it some attention. If not, this is just a great resource to keep referring people to. My post was less of a Rani tribute, and more of a dissection of one of her films, so I’m glad you took a broader approach.

  2. Miranda, thank you for the nice words! Regarding your post, you wrote some good and detailed descriptions about Rani’s appeal (not just limited to that one film) and took the time to write a good plot summary with some entertaining asides. So, I would say you took a deeper approach!

    You must be getting pretty advanced in your knowledge of Urdu at this point to have picked up as much of the plot as you did…

    As for the Punjabi films, music, etc., well, I guess neither of us is going to understand the words as much. :) But, yes, I do like getting into the Punjabi music and the dances and my history of liking Punjabi music actually predates my interest in all of these classic Indian and Pakistani films. (Maybe I’ll get into that history more another time. :) )

    I also have had a chance to watch some Punjabi films with subtitles. It’s been helpful that Tom uploaded some of the ones starring Noor Jehan, but I also found one or two of her Punjabi films with English subtitles years before that, and a number of subtitled Punjabi songs. (Yes, that is how I started watching Pakistani-Punjabi films – by following Noor Jehan. Big surprise, right?) But I’ve followed a few other stars into Punjabi territory, too – Shyama, for instance. Sometimes when I become aware of someone who did movie songs or dances in both Hindi/Urdu and Punjabi, I almost can’t resist looking to see what that person did on the Punjabi side. (On rare occasions, it has also worked the other way… Such as Surinder Kaur… I am pretty sure I knew her first as a Punjabi folk singer, then found her playback singing in ’40s Hindi films.) But the language is another matter… I don’t see myself learning Punjabi anytime soon! :) But I still very much want to learn more Urdu/Hindi.

    Anyway, thank you for your nice references from your blog, and whatever you are doing in your “other social media pages”… I will send you some more comments at your blog tomorrow. I also will mention your post on Facebook. (I don’t think I know what your other social media pages are, but Facebook is just about the only other one for me right now – which is just as well, because I spend way too much time there.)

  3. Loved your post and the dances and songs, especially ‘Kaatey Na Katey”. I had no idea Pakistani films would feature dances like some of the modern ones you have linked to. Rani is undoubtedly a good dancer although I would rate our Helen a notch above. Keep the good stuff coming. I never know what to expect when I visit your blog (Noorjehan excepted, of course) and that’s what makes me come back.

  4. Thank you, Soumya. And I hope that the surprises in this blog continue to make you come back and you continue to send me such nice, encouraging comments. :)

  5. The plot took some attention paying, that’s for sure. I have to replay scenes a lot to try to catch dialogues, but it’s mostly good Urdu practice … when it’s at all decipherable. When it’s not, it’s just a headache.

    I have this weird habit of complaining about a filmi hang-up, and then the next day or so, getting over it. It’s happened a bunch of times with various actors and eras and genres. Like my brain has to be contrary, or maybe getting out my hesitancy (esp. when there are few people in my circles who know what I’m talking about enough to understand that hesitancy) verbally breaks the dam. So anyhow, I invested in a classic/traditional Pakistani songs compilation a few days ago, and after looking closer, I think they’re all Punjabi. Figures ;) They’re pretty catchy tho. Like you, I can’t see myself trying to learn the language, however.

    I’ve looked back at some of your other Pakistani film posts, and while, like you say, a lot of it is Noor Jehan (tho, nothing wrong with that!), it’s really a work of love to keep blogging about these old Pakistani films no matter what led you there, and I’m glad you’ve kept at it. It’s helpful to all of us, and I don’t know about you, but it’s nice to feel as if one is supporting the underdog (and if any classic south-asian industry lacks advocates, it’s Urdu cinema). Hopefully we can continue to converse on this front, and link future posts. I just finished my first Santosh-Sabiha Khanum romantic comedy, which I’ll probably write about soon. The first half was really something special, but it lost its way in the second. What’s your favorite “unknown” Noor Jehan film that you’ve seen so far? I still need to watch one of hers in full.

    In interest of continuing that conversation: I do have a facebook page for filmi-contrast now. It seems you have one for DOTF? Or is it a personal page? Otherwise, we can use email, or twitter.

  6. OK, I have gone to your Facebook page for Filmi-Contrast and liked a couple of things. (And by the way, I was starting to get the idea that you didn’t like naming the blog with a hyphen, just a tilde… But now, apparently, the hyphen is OK. :) ) I also sent you a Facebook message.

    I set up a page for DOTF as a sub-page (?) in my personal account, but I never go there, and I never use it. I think part of the reason is that I found myself becoming Facebook friends with quite a few people who knew me from this blog, and almost immediately after I started my account. (Well, actually, I didn’t start my account for myself; it was started for me by a woman whom I was involved with in the summer of 2012, and I just started using it after she had set it up. So, I hadn’t really researched or figured out anything about Facebook; I just went right into using the timeline to write and share things and was too technologically lazy to figure out how to get into anything else. :) ) Anyway, so I use my timeline to share all DOTF posts and all favorite film, music, and dance clips. But if anybody expects it to be like an extension of this blog, they’ll get much more than they bargained for. :) I spend much of the time sharing old favorite rock and pop music, too, and making attempts to wear the rock critic hat again (since I was a part-time rock critic for some magazines for a long time a long time ago). I also share a lot related to my politics, and I have a good group of FB friends whom I know from some activist involvements going back 15 years.

    If you could stand the variety :) , would it be possible for you to friend me as “Filmi-Contrast”? I don’t know, exactly, how that works with blog pages. (Most of my blogging friends on FB have personal pages from which they friended me as well as pages devoted to their blogs – which they actually use.) Anyway, you should see my specific Facebook URL in my likes and my message that I sent you. (I don’t generally share that URL here. Though maybe there isn’t any reason not to… I might sometime in the future…)

    Now to get to other parts of your comment (finally)…

    I am not sure what an “unknown” Noor Jehan film is. I guess the one that everyone knows is Anmol Ghadi, so that wouldn’t be one? It is my favorite by far, and added to the benefits of Noor Jehan is that it’s a real Suraiya fest, too. I also like Surendra a lot, though for some reason, quite a few other bloggers don’t. There is also some grim philosophical stuff that I like in that film. :)

    Speaking of Noor Jehan and Surendra, I greatly enjoyed the 1944 film Lal Haveli, which also starred both of them. Mirza Sahiban is also very good. Jugnu and Zeenat are good, too, though pretty grim… And I haven’t had the chance to watch either of them with English subtitles (it’s just that I know about the very depressing plots.)

    In the Pakistani films, the best one is Dupatta. I have to admit, though, that I couldn’t really get into most of the other Pakistani Noor Jehan films as whole films; it’s just that the music is so beautiful – especially the music from the era when she was in front of the screen, too. Tom posted a whole bunch of these to his YouTube channel.

    Curiously, a couple of the ones on YouTube that looked most interesting to me were ones outside of Tom’s posts, so I didn’t have the benefit of English subtitles: Intezar and the Pakistani Anarkali. (Both were pretty easy to watch even though I couldn’t understand most of the words. Though, it’s not as though I need to understand the dialogue to know the plot of Anarkali.)

    Regarding films you are reviewing, yes, I am looking forward to seeing what you have to say about the Santosh-Sabiha Khanum comedy…

    And, yes, I would be happy to continue the dialogue about these things in e-mail as well as here and Facebook… But, sorry, no Twitter account!

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