Sunday, December 19, 2010

Mini-Reviews: Devdas & Dev.D

I will now try something new: The mini-reviews, which you probably already know from some of the other Bollywood bloggers. What's great about this method is that you with little effort can delete some of your DVDs from your to-write-list. Somehow reminds me of short films in comparison to feature films...
We'll start with SLBs Blockbuster, Devdas, and the experimental remake Dev.D.

For those who are not familiar with the story of Devdas: Devdas was the name of a Bengali novel by Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay, written 1917. It has been picturized many, many times, but the story is always the same: Devdas is a boy from a wealthy family and his best friend is Paro, who belongs to a middle-class family. They both live in the same village. When Devdas returns after 13 years of studying, the two childhood-friends fall in love with each other. But when Paro's family makes the wedding proposal to Devdas family, they are insulted, because Paro doesn't belong to the same caste as Devdas. She's "not worthy". Then, Paro's mother finds an even richer husband for her. Devdas then leaves the village and tells Paro, that they were only friends. However, he changes his mind and tells Paro, he would do anything for saving their love. Paro is now almost married, so she makes only one request to Devdas: He shall return to her, before he dies. While Paro lives the life of a bird in a golden cage, Devdas seeks consolation in alcohol and Chandramukhi, a courtesan, who falls in love with him.

DEVDAS (2002):
Devdas - another great film by SLB. All those dances, the style and production and the dresses and actors, that's already really impressive. But a good movie needs a good story, too. And Devdas has got one. True, I couldn't comprehend to some of it, but it was definetely dramatic! The actors are also superb! I didn't always understand Shahrukh's character, but at any rate, he acted well. Aishwarya was truly beautiful and also the acting was one of her top performances. Madhuri was magical. Both of them also performed some incredible choreographies, especially in the well-known "Dola Re Dola". And as we're already into it, the songs are fantastic. Well, they should be, as the composers needed 2 years to complete the soundtrack. "Silsila Yeh Chaahat Ka" is the first song in the movie, and it's staged very well, with the candle light and that whole choreography. "Maar Daala" is another gem, with Madhuri, who dances delightfully. The whole soundtrack is very romantic, a little bit like the soundtrack of HDDCS, but much better, off course. All songs are implemented very well, it was especially great seeing so many traditional dances. The backdrops are breathtaking, with plenty of gold and silver.
Well, I can't say much more, other than: Watch this movie!!!

Rating: 10.0

DEV.D (2009):
Wow - this movie really blew me away. The story about Devdas, Paro and Chanda (or Chandramukhi) was interpretated in a totally new, modern way. There were even two newcoming actresses: Mahie Gill, who I found very good. She seems very Indian and natural (she's been casted in other movies too, but this was her first big role).  Furthermore Kalki Koechlin, playing Chanda/Leni. I'm not sure of what to think of her. She was quite convincing in this movie, but the question is, if she can also fill out other roles...? The movie was also very gloomy,  a fact that doubtless doesn't stimulates you to watch it very often, but that was also quite fascinating. The music matched the movie perfectly, especially the many versions of "Emosanal Attyachar", but I won't listen to the soundtrack very often, as it's just real film-music.
I can only recommend this movie, particularly to fans of Abhay Deol (includes me) and all those, who also like the "dark" Indian cinema.

Rating: 9.4

All of you who are even more interested in the story of Devdas, I can advise you to watch all the other versions, from which the newest is from 1965 and the oldest from 1928. If I have the time some day, I might do that. But you should really have seen one of those movies, whereas the 2002 version is probably most compatible.


  1. Devdas was a beautiful film, great direction and screenplay, brilliant actors (though i am never convinced with Ash, she gave her best in HDDCS)

    DevD is all about Abhay Deol...louved him in his first film - socha na tha - thats a must watch!


  2. Dev. D was brilliant--it's one of my favorites for sure. I use it as a gateway movie to show friends who are skeptical about Bollywood. "See, it's not all chiffon saris and melodrama!"

  3. @ Bombay Talkies: I'd like to do that, but most of my friends don't even wanna try to watch a bw movie.


Let the discussion begin!