Director: Guru Dutt; Writer: Guru Dutt, Balraj Sahni; Producer: Dev Anand; Cinematographer: V. Ratra; Editor: Y.G. Chawhan; Cast: Dev Anand, Geeta Bali, Kalpana Kartik, Roopa Varma, K.N. Singh, K. Dhawan, Srinath, Rashid Ahmed, Abu Baker, Nirmal Kumar, Habib
Duration: 02:17:06; Aspect Ratio: 1.333:1; Hue: 60.000; Saturation: 0.010; Lightness: 0.145; Volume: 0.193; Cuts per Minute: 4.565; Words per Minute: 33.453
Guru Dutt’s directorial debut was a follow-up of Afsar (1950), the film with which the brothers Anand launched Navketan and which signalled a transition in Dev Anand’s screen persona. Madan (Anand) is a small-time gambler forced into joining the owner of the Star Hotel, a mysterious and shadowy criminal (Singh), to pay for his sister’s medical expenses. Other characters are Rajani (Kartik), a doctor, her fiance, the cop Ramesh (Dhawan), and later Leena (Bali), a cabaret dancer who is killed and for whose murder Madan is framed. The elusive villain eventually turns out to be Rajani’s father. Madan, condemned to death, is saved by Ramesh who lays a trap to catch the villain. Dutt demonstrates a confident assimilation of the Warner Bros. film noir style, esp. in the lighting, the camera placements and the editing. Even though it was his directorial debut, the film already shows a remarkable talent for song picturisation, something Dutt became famous for. One of the film-makers who apparently fascinated him at this time was John Huston, an inspiration he also used in his second film, Jaal
(1952). Includes Geeta Dutt’s famous song Tadbir se bigdi huyi.
Club Song of the 1950s
Song: Suno gajar kya gaaye
SUNO GAJAR KYA (BAAZI)
This is Guru Dutt’s first film. He is clearly inspired from Hollywood Noir films. The Script was by Balraj Sahni. Film was loosely based on the Hollywood film noir, Gilda (Dir Charles Vidor 1946)
The song is set in a gambling club, which is the den of a shadowy villain. The song itself is not western but certainly exoticised. The viewer can sense something is going to happen. Maybe a murder?
Dev Anand appears unaware of the tension that is building up-- perhaps he is the target?
The singer is trying to warn him, by her words.
This song was choreographed by Zohra Sehgal, who, like Guru Dutt, studied in Almora with Uday Shankar.
The setting is formalized. Men are wearing dinner jackets. The dinner jacket became the de rigeur uniform for club scenes for several years, even after it ceased to be formal wear.