If one film has to define the word ‘hilarious, it is Golmaal, and till date both the actors in the film as well as audiences remember it fondly
One is instantly reminded of the movie Golmaal when we talk about the famous actor-director Amol Palekar. The movie Golmaal released in 1980 directed by Hrishikesh Mukherjee brings to mind ripples of laughter. Any discussion about comedy movies is not complete without Golmaal. Hrishi-da himself liked his comedy Naram Garam more than his movie Golmaal. But most critics, while appreciating Naram Garam, have always lauded Golmaal as a complete movie. According to Late Deven Verma, the demised comic actor, it was a classic comedy that made the audience laugh every moment. These kinds of films are seen once in a blue moon. It is not a complicated love story, nor are there villainous characters and fisticuffs. The film begins with the title song of Golmaal. After ten minutes, the audiences find themselves engrossed in the confusion and Golmaal between the duo Bhawani Shankar and Ram Prasad. Amol Palekar as Ram Prasad gets a job in Bhawani Shankar”s Urmila Traders by dint of fake idealism and bunch of lies. Later, he had to take refuge in a series of lies one after another to hide the previous lies. He had to create Lakshman Prasad as his imaginary brother. Then begins the game of hide and seek with the audience rolling in laughter, which indeed ends only when Bhawani Shankar gets to know about Ram Prasad”s reality.
Palekar does not consider his as double role in the movie as he says, “I believe I had a single role in this movie. But interestingly, this character had three roles, one Ram Prasad, who is at home; another Ram Prasad who works in the offices and Lakshman Prasad.
Very few people know that when Hrishi-da discussed the Ram Prasad-Lakshman Prasad rigmarole to Amol Palekar, he decided not to do the film. Amol says, “I do not accept any role without listening to the script, and Hrishi-da narrates the script only after offering the role. As I listened to the entire script I was elated. I accepted the offer immediately.
Hrishi-da initially wanted Rekha to be the lead actress in the movie but later he changed his mind. He did not want Rekha to do such a small role. Later he chose Bindiya Goswami for this role. However, he did not forget Rekha, and he presented Rekha in the lead role in Khoobsurat and gave a novel direction to her career.
To talk about this movie without the character of Bhawani Shankar performed by Utpal Dutt will be incomplete. He had an amazing chemistry with Amol Palekar on the screen. His acting was marvellous with Shobha Khote. She acted as his widowed sister Kalindi in the movie. Shobha Khote laughs a lot remembering a few scenes in the movie, “The shooting of Golmaal was like a picnic for us. We laughed every moment on the sets. All the scenes, right from mooli ka parantha, Urmi’s Lakshman or hitting Bhawani Shankar by mistake kindles fond memories even today. We had a beautiful rapport with Utpal. He used to speak very less and most of the time he was seen reading a book on a chair in his free time during the shooting.”
Even Amol has ample memories of Utpal-da. “Our personal rapport was amazing, as it also reflected in every scene of the movie. I have seen very few movies being shot in such homely environment. We were quite sad on the day shooting was completed. I feel I would have worked in some more movies like Golmaal. It is among the few movies of mine where I enjoyed each and every scene.”
Amol Palekar received the Filmfare award for best actor for his role in Golmaal. In this race, Ashok Kumar, Sanjeev Kumar and Amitabh Bachchan were his main competitors. Hrishi-da’s favourite actor Amitabh was in a guest appearance in the movie. Late Utpal Dutt got the best comedian award for this movie. The haunting song “aanewala pal” became a craze amongst audiences and Gulzar got the best lyricist”s award.
Another striking feature of the film was its satirical dialogues. Though Rahi Masoom Raza did not get any award in this movie but cine lovers still remember his dialogues. In Shobha Khote’s (Kalindi Bua) words, “Golmaal is so packed with boisterous joy on celluloid that it will always bring smiles to the audiences. According to Manju Singh, who played role of Amol Palekar”s sister, “Such a resoundingly successful classic comedy like Golmaal will never be made again.”
“Bollywood mostly copies Hollywood films”
Either you think of a storyline and give it a form of movie script or else you convert a literary creation into a script. These are two different things. Hrishi-da was quite proficient in making movies from his stories and literary creation. The problem with Hindi cinema is that it is mostly inspired by Hollywood films. Bollywood filmmakers like to make movies taking masala from two or three Hollywood movies. A filmmaker”s source of inspiration could be anything. But the creation should be original. Hrishi-da’s film is the perfect example. The story of the movie is quite simple but the moustache drama will not let the audience think of anything else. As far as I am concerned, I have been a strong supporter of making movies of literary background. It is quite difficult for me to make movies of such excellence and Hrishi-da alone was proficient in creating such marvels. A lot of comedy movies have been made and will continue to be made based on this story. But how many of them have reached even close to Golmaal? I do not consider the Indian audiences responsible for it. The audience which has appreciated Satyajit Ray’s Pather Panchali can’t be ignorant. I expect that filmmakers can make better movies than Golmaal, but till then, all the talks of a brilliant comedy will revolve around Golmaal.
© 2016 Sulabh Swachh Bharat. All Right Reserved