Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Breakfast at Tiffany's - 1961

There are families with a mother and father and children, living together in harmony and setting an example to others. There are other people who live on the periphery, knowing no security, thrown out in the world and forced to find their way around. These people have seen a seamier side of life and have moral values that have been 'adjusted'.

Holly Golightly and Paul Varjak live on the outside of the society. Holly is trying to survive in the world, dreaming of the day she will again be with her brother Fred and raise horses in a Mexican ranch. She wants to save money for this day, but finds it slipping through her fingers. She knows all the rich and eligible bachelors and wants to buy security for herself and Fred by marrying one of them. Paul is a struggling writer and finds that a 'helpful' society girlfriend does not hurt.

Like kinderd souls let loose in the cruel world, Paul and Holly are drawn towards one another. Will they be able to help each other?

Audery Hepaburn's luminous beauty lights up the movie. Her frail, ingenue looks make Holly an iconic character.

Holly Golighty

So frail.

You can understand why the world is in love with Audrey Hepburn, after you see this movie.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Beautiful Always !

I got the idea for this post from Reema's Post about Five Female Crushes. As usual, she peppers her post with lovely illustrations and pictures to show us why those 5 girls are so beautiful. I wanted to pick up the tag and do something on with-and-without-makeup pics of famous beauties. But instead I found myself picking up girls from a bygone era and found myself looking at the current images of those women, still beautiful.

Madhubala :

Sometimes I feel she is the ultimate beauty. She reigned over bollywood with tags like Venus. She was ethereal in her early hit, Mahal. She is the Ladki bheegi bhagi si who was all allure, innocence and loveliness. She was amazingly funny in Chalti ka naam gaadi, a perfect girl next door who is unabashed and spirited. Her role in Mughaleazam was different. She was both romantic and realistic in the movie. She knew that her love for Salim would never be accepted and foresaw only doom for herself. Despite that she offers her sweet love to Salim and accepts all the hardships she has to face with a fortitute that made her an icon for Love.

There is no old picture of Madhubala because she died young of a heart disease. Even if she had aged, she would have looked just as beautiful. Here she looks like a dream beside Dev Anand.

2. Durga Khote

I have always seen Durga Khote in a character role, mother, grandmother even. She exudes a grace and glory that even a young shapely nymphet would want. She was one of the first women of bollywood, Indian films who chose movies and acting as a career. Despite hailing from a 'good' family she stepped into acting. She was attached not only to the film world but the progressive theatre as well. An intellectual actress she was Beauty and Grace Personified.

She has worked in countless movies, but let me list two or three. She was the grandma who gave her favorite ugly duckling granddaughter Sadhana a makeover in Love in Shimla. She breaks Sadhna's thick glasses, cuts her hair and styles it and gives her a lesson in deportment. Amazing. She was the beautiful Jodhaa in Mughaleazam who is torn between her love for her husband, her duty as the maharani of Hindustan and her love for her son Salim. Class Act ! She was again Dimple's Grandma in Bobby who loves Rishi but cannot allow them run away. At the last, she was seen as Rishi's mother from previous birth in Karz.

The dimples NEVER fade.

3. Ingrid Bergman :

There were a bevy of beautiful women in hollywood, girls who could take your breath away. Girls with sass and spunk and loads of talent. There were studio heads who knew how to get the best out of their stars, how to showcase their talents. They made Hollywood into a standard that the rest of the world struggled to follow.

In this scenario it was difficult to stand out. But Ingrid Bergman had a quiet kind of a beauty that stole over you totally. Sometimes it is not just pretty features and beautiful figure that makes one face stand out, it is some kind of an allure that draws glances, an aura that makes people look at THAT face and no other. Ingrid Bergman had that allure, a soft lovely look on her face that made her look so beautiful. Her supreme talent that made her unforgettable.

Graceful always !

Play it again Sam.

4. Waheeda Rahman :

She had a whammy debut in CID, went on to play a prostitute with a heart of gold in Pyaasa. She looked like a dream. She was the original protege of Guru Dutt, but soon shook off the mantle and became a great star on her own steam. Her opus was surely Guide. She was known as a magnificent dancer and a good actress, both these talents were well exploited in Guide. I think Pyasa and Guide are among the top 5 Hindi movies and Waheeda graces both these movies beautifully.

Her looks never faded !

5. Dimple :

It helps when a great filmmaker launches you. Raj Kapoor was looking for a fresh looking girl to match his cute and talented son, Rishi. He happened to look at Kapadia's older daughter and history was made. In Bobby he chose to re-enact his own first meeting with Nargis.

But of course it was much earlier, during his birthday party that Rishi spots Dimple, framed in candles and prettier than a picture.

Cuter than a button.

Locked up in a room - a scene fraught with innocence and sexiness. Did they do it?

Just when she became the toast of the bollywood town, she tossed it away to marry Rajesh Khanna who was THE man of the moment. An early death, a retirement turns a memory poignant and its subject a topic of debate. Thus the tinseltown sang out its grief when such a natural actress and such a pretty girl bid adieu. Dimple returned with a bang in Sagar, and has never needed to go away. After a few unsavory films during the early period of her comeback, she has chosen wisely and had given us gems like Rudali, Being Cyrus, Dil Chahta Hai and Luck By Chance.

AGE, naah !