Lamhe


By Shruti Vairagkar (L&T Howden)

It has often been called a movie ahead of its times. Despite a lackluster commercial performance, Lamhe was hailed by critics and has been cited as Yash Chopra’s favourite of his films.

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It has often been called a movie ahead of its times. Despite a lackluster commercial performance, Lamhe was hailed by critics and has been cited as Yash Chopra’s favourite of his films.

Starring Sridevi in a double role playing mother and daughter, Anil Kapoor, Waheeda Rehman, and Anupam Kher, Lamhe is a movie which transcends time and generation. It is a love story exploring the nuances of the proverbial May-December romance with elements of unrequited love.

The story line is fairly simple and easy to follow. A young Viren (played by Anil Kapoor) falls in love with a much older Pallavi (played by Sridevi) when he comes for a short visit to Rajasthan having lived most of his life in London. An unfortunate accident leaves Pallavi and her husband’s daughter in the care of Viren and his Dai jaan (played by Waheeda Rehman). She grows up resembling her mother and falling in love with Viren. Much of the movie plays out with a much older Viren and a young Pooja ably supported by Waheeda Rehman and Anupam Kher.

What draws me to this movie and makes me see it every single time it is played on TV is the acting and music. Sridevi is fabulous in both her roles, the mature and earthy Pallavi contrasting against the young and giggle prone Pooja. The character development of Anil Kapoor is well etched from a hopeful, young man to a jaded, world weary middle aged man. Playing a character which resembles the actor’s age is quite rare in Indian cinema and one saw it in the early 90s!

The music reflects the mood of the movie. The folksy Chudiyan Khanak Gayi was a rage back then and continues to be one of Sridevi’s famous numbers. Kabhi Main Kahoon, a romantic number throws light on the young love Pooja has for Viren. There is also a lovely medley of old songs which has Waheeda Rehman breaking into a little jog, which is a delight to watch.

Lamhe has elements which may be difficult to comprehend. The plot isn’t perfect, and characters and their actions and decisions may not be relatable. However, if you are willing to overlook that, it is a movie which has all the elements that could warm your heart – comedy, a touch of tragedy, and of course, love.