Director: Asit Sen; Writer: Ashutosh Mukherjee, Gulzar; Producer: Geetanjali; Cinematographer: Kamal Bose; Cast: Rajesh Khanna, Waheeda Rehman, Dharmendra, Nasir Hussain, Lalita Pawar, Snehalata, Iftikhar, Deven Verma, Bhudo Advani, Brahm Bhardwaj, Tarun Ghosh, Anwar Hussain (Actor), Praveen Paul, Polson
Duration: 01:54:29; Aspect Ratio: 1.385:1; Hue: 60.130; Saturation: 0.002; Lightness: 0.358; Volume: 0.201; Cuts per Minute: 5.625
The first of Sen’s tragic melodramas with Hindi star Khanna (followed by Safar, 1970). The nurse Radha (Rehman) has to pretend to fall in love with her male patients, as part of the therapy in a mental asylum. The first time she does this, she actually falls in love, and is devastated when her cured patient (Dharmendra) merely thanks her and leaves to marry his fiancee. When it threatens to happen once again, with a few variations, with her second patient (Khanna), the nurse goes insane. Hindi remake of Sen’s classic Deep Jweley Jai (1959)
, rescued like its predecessor mainly by soft-focus b&w photography and classic songs like composer Mukherjee’s Tum pukar lo, tumhara intezar hai
and Woh shyam kuch ajeeb thi (sung by Kishore Kumar)
Song: Theme (Tum pukar lo, instrumental)
Psychiatrists discuss different mental disorders and the chief doctor, Doctor Colonel, proposes the cultivation of a strong relationship between the healthcare provider and the patient as a sort of experimental therapy.
Arun's tight close-ups, indicating his heightened emotional and psychological state, are interspersed with and somewhat mirrored by the intense dance sequence on stage. The appearance of the girl and his desire to kill her suggest that his mental condition is linked to women.
Arun is brought to the hospital. The soundtrack (by Hemanta Mukherjee) and architecture combine to make this an eerie scene. The dystopic geometry of the asylum's facade - modern, functional design - and atonal, ominous music are suggestive and encourage the audience to feel Arun's fear.
Doctor Colonel broadly explains to the other nurse, Beena, Freudian ideas of psychoanalysis. A rare Bollywood moment dealing explicitly with theories of the mind.
Singer: Hemanta Mukherjee
Song: Tum pukar lo
Love as cure trope: female labour for male health and well-being.
Arun slaps Radha instead of Beena: the interchangeable woman.
Singer: Lata Mangeshkar
Song: Humne dekhi hai in aankhon ki mehekti khushboo... pyaar ko pyaar hi rehne do, koi naam naa do.
Arun has a fantasy about Sulekha disrobing for him so he can sketch her. Railing against her, he becomes increasingly violent and threatens to kill her, attacking the coat-hanger here he imagines her to be standing. Unbeknonst to him, Radha looks on.
Singer: Lata Mangeshkar
Song: Humne dekhi hai in aankhon ki khushboo...
Arun undergoes shock treatment and Radha intervenes just in time.
Singer: Kishore Kumar
Song: Woh shaam kuch ajeeb thi
Arun tries to meet and talk to Radha but is unable to enter her room where she sits listlessly.
The final sequence featuring Radha gone mad as Doctor Colonel and Arun try to talk to her.