1. The lost and found formula. The Kumbh Mela is an alien concept in today’s movies. No brothers get lost in the Kumbh Mela any more. Worse still, the children are no longer named as Munna and Munni.
2. Nirupa Roy and Helen – While one was the quintessential Mother India the other was the Dream Girl for men of every age and class. (Forget Nargis and Hema Malini for a while) If you remember a scene from Gol-maal where a middle aged man tells Amol Palekar how important it is for him not to miss Helen in the movie. Those were the times when the film did not depend on just a Khan.
3. There was a time when Dharmendra was a romantic hero. Those were the days when he did not cry “Ma muzhe chorke mat jaa ma” and then search for dogs to drink their blood. Luckily for him PETA was not so active when he mouthed the famous, “kutte main tera khun pee jaunga.” Those were the times when a certain long legged Illahabadi had not burst into the Hindi Movie domain. Those were the times when deshprem was the domain of a certain Mr. Bharat.
4. Hrishikesh Mukherjee – he made family movies; movies you could watch with everyone without getting embarrassed. A film maker who defined Romantic Comedy with humour that generated with ease. Zindagi ek rangmanch hain and he was the master director.
5. Kanoon ke lambe haath – We all thought that when Sanjeev Kumar used his studded shoes to capture the baap of all dacoits, Gabber Singh, all goons were in the grasp of kanoon ke lambe haath. And then of course there was Shashi Kapoor who, because uske pass maa tha, could ensure that his own brother saw the light at the end of the tunnel. All was going well when in the nineties a Bazigaar changed everything.
6. Kaali Goofa and the Dacoits – Only Kanti Shah makes them like the old times. The horses, the canyons, the tilaks and the imaandar police officer who would always get shot in his arm if he was the hero and on his chest if he was the hero’s father. All dacoit headquarters was called the kaali goofa. And yes when the drug deals happened or the kidnappers wanted money they always met under Kaali Pahari.
7. And then the music died… I miss poetry and chaste urdu poetry even more. I miss words that rang with music and lyrics that spoke of a pain deep within.
8. In the male dominated Hindi film industry, there were superstars who could pull off a movie by their own charisma. I miss the Pakeezas, the Umrao Zaans, the Mother Indias. Of the recent movies, only Kajol and Dushman come to mind.
9. The birthday party of the rich girl where she introduces the guy to her dad. This is one formula that has been modified across the ages but the essence remains the same. The dad will smile and take the guy to his study where his salary will be asked and the cost of the shoes of the heroine will be informed. At times blank cheques would be issued. In fact, I think we should start a course at IIMB to analyse the stats so as to understand the inflation.
10. But I never feel sad. All good things in this world evolve to become better and the rest just remain happy memories like the dialogues of yesteryear. After all, “Pushpa, I hate tears”.