Review – Khoya Khoya Chand (2007)

Director: Sudhir Mishra

Running Time: 150mins

Based on the Semi-Biography of Guru Dutt

The movie is set in 1950s to 60s and is more or less a tribute to the golden years of Indian Cinema. There are lots of small shots from different films made in the period in this movie. Now you might be wondering how is this film different from lots of other films which tried to depict the golden era period. This is unlike any other film in this genre because of the harsh reality and truth in it. How the Film Industry is so glamorous on the outside and is shameless and filled with injustice and betrayals on the inside.

Nikhat(Soha Ali Khan) is a beautiful dancer who is willing to do anything to be an actress,to be a star. She is compelled to work with Prem Kumar (Rajat Kapoor) who is a superstar in his own right and more importantly has the whole film industry dancing to his tunes. Enter Zafar Ali Naqvi(Shiney Ahuja), upcoming Urdu writer from Lucknow who has the potential to be one of the best writers of his time because he knows he is that good. Zafar comes to Bombay to try his hand in films and is encouraged by his best friend (Vinay Pathak) who is narrating this whole movie. Long story short….Prem Kumar is one calling all the shots, who should act with him, direct his films, write his films everything. Nikhat starts to think that Prem kumar is just using her like a puppet to fulfill his personal needs. Zafar makes her realize what she is doing is brought upon by her own growing ambitions to be a great actress and so no one else is to be blamed for but herself. Eventually, they fall in love and want to get married, BUT the marriage is called off when Nikhat comes to know she will be no value as an actress if she’s married. So, they live together and go about their personal lives.

Month’s Later, Zafar gets a chance to direct his own film based on this novel. When he asks Nikhat to do his film she refuses due to prior commitments. Every film-maker has to make a film when the producer is after him to make one. Ratanbala (Sonya Jehan) was chosen by Zafar to play the female lead. The movie releases but it wasn’t a hit because he made a film for himself, a film he believed in, a film on the story of his life. The events that followed were Zafar trying to make his comeback after a while and the film he made was named “Khoya Khoya Chand” based on the story of Nikhat, Zafar and Prem Kumar.

Sudhir Mishra has made a revolutionary film. Not by way of the storyline but by the way he’s portrayed Zafar’s character as one who wants to show realities of life in films and not of one who shows what happens in films is exactly what happens in life. Few scenes are worth mentioning. When Zafar goes to Noni Ganguly,a great director of his time, when he realizes that Prem kumar doesn’t want his story in the film. The Quote above is exactly what he said to Zafar. Another one is how naturally the director showed a movie Premiere in Bombay. It looked very realistic and made Farah Khan’s movie premiere scene in her film look like it was in some dream world. At no point in the movie will you get bored with any of the characters or the storyline. The film will draw you in totally.

Shiney Ahuja is growing as an actor through every film. Since the character is from lucknow and in reality he’s a lucknowi, he fits in to the role very well. Rajat Kapoor has done full justice to the role as the quintessential star actor. Soha Ali Khan, after a few stupid films in her career has given her career best acting much better than her role in Rang De Basanti. Sonya Jehan and Vinay Pathak have stuck to their character’s behavior and did their best.

This film shows Indian Cinema what it used to be and what it has to be.

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