Starring Dev Anand, Geeta Bali, Manmohan Krishna, Krishan Dhawan, Mehmood, Poonam, Shrawan Kumar

For some obscure reason it was subtitled “Dev Anand in Goa” for the reissue, ostensibly because in the interregnum three more films with the same title had hit the market at regular intervals. Another plausible reason could be this was the evergreen star's second and last visit to Goa for shooting. It was the last film with him and Geeta Bali, the first being Guru Dutt-directed “Baazi”. The twosome altogether worked in five other movies together – “Jaal”, “Zalzala” (52), “Ferry” (54), “Milap” (55) and “Pocket Maar” (56). She married Shammi Kapoor (in 55) and gradually faded away.

One of Anand's favourite leading ladies whom he described in his autobiography as “a sport, with the vitality and vigour of a Punjabi rustic” and who had also been in his Chevrolet he was driving that met with an accident on the return from Malwan, near Goa border after completing the shooting of “Jaal”. Both had to spend considerable time in a small local hospital. Anand nearly broke his ribs.

Written by the incorrigible romantic, Krishan Chander with lyrics by Prem Dhawan and Ali Sardar Jafri, set to music by Anil Biswas, choreographed by Sachin Shankar and Zohra Segal, brilliantly photographed in black and white by V. Ratra, and directed by Phani Majumdar under the banner of Unique Pictures for producers Tara Anand and Pradip Maitra, it tells the story of a group of revolutionaries in pre-Partition India who flee to Goa (then a Portuguese colony) by the sea route. Led by the handsome idealist youth, Gora (Dev Anand), accompanied by Ajay (Shrawan Kumar) and Anjali (Poonam), whose husband Bipin (Anand Pal) is shot and injured in a court trial (by Gora). On the run, Gora suffers a bullet injury and is treated by Dr. Pillay (Manmohan Krishna), a past revolutionary now settled in Goa. Meenakshi (Poonam) nurses him to health. Although Gora is determined about his mission, even sets up a bomb making factory, he cannot help cupid from striking in the form of singer-dancer Kitty (Geeta Bali) who ultimately becomes his accomplice.

Love conquers all odds as Kitty ultimately misleads the police, and escapes to safety with her beau. But not before a major twist. Bipin arrives in Goa accompanied by a cop (Krishan Dhawan) and mounts an operation against the freedom fighters, even succeeds in destroying the ship carrying boxes of ammunition, killing Anjali in the process. Gora orders his accomplices to take the first boat to Bombay under cover of darkness and despite protests stays back to foil the police's designs which he does with help of Kitty who misleads the police, and escapes to safety with Gora.

Coquettish, lusciously-lipped Geeta Bali is a delight to watch, her chemistry with Anand, for a change, is an ideal foil for his contained performance (perhaps the only film in which he did not lip-sync a single song). Mehmoodhad a miniscule cameo.

Every song exquisitely choreographed with minimal movement is a delight to watch, including “Aya Bambaiwallah mera naam hai gadbad jhala” (Ali Sardar Jafri) in a running train. All other lyrics were credited to Prem Dhawan – “Har ek nazar idhar udhar”, “Jee bhar ke pyar karlo”, “Ek Raat ki yeh preet”, “Pyar ki dastaan tum suno to hum kahe”, “Dil chura loon dil chura loon”, “Ek naya tarana ek naya fasana hoon mein” – in Geeta Dutt's sonorous voice.

Keywords: Faraar movie


Naya Din Nai Raat (1974)January 3, 2013