Mera Saath Rahen
is not about lovers but about two brothers. Ajay
Devgan plays Raj and Master Dushyant plays 14-year-old Rahul
who is afflicted by cerebral palsy. The big brother is willing to give up everything to
look after his kid brother. Their neighbours stand by
them. Namrata Shirodkar, playing the role of Suman, loves Raj, but he just brushes
her off, committed as he is to his brother.
When he picks up his boss's niece
Madhuri, played by Sonali Bendre, from the airport, things change. Madhuri works
in an ad agency and she thinks Rahul needs to go to
a special school and interact with other children instead of staying at home.
Raj first rejects the idea. When he does put him in one of such
institution things go all wrong. The story goes on to resolve the
strain between the two brothers and the two girls.
Mahesh Manjrekar directs this film. He
earlier directed the critically acclaimed Astitva,
starring Tabu. He is reportedly moving on to Hollywood. There
was Vaastav before that, and a flop Jis Des Mein Ganga
with Anand Raj Anand and Praveen Bharadwaj as music director
and lyricist respectively. They seem to be his preferred
team: he has them on Pitah
I don't know
if in the film Mahesh Manjrekar questions Indian attitudes towards
special children or the adequacy of the institutions which offer help.
Then the film might rise above just sentimental wrenching of hearts
Anand Raaj Anand has had some moderate
success in Major Saab and Pardesi Babu
. He seems to try very hard to think up
tunes which don't sound stale, but still uses the Hindi film music format
of violins and dholak.
Tera mera saath rahen
starts off with a lovely phrase
on the violin and flute. It has the usual violin ensemble and dholaks,
and Udit Narayan and Alka Yagnik. But the tune does not sound
too bad. Tujh se bichad ke by Udit
Narayan and Hathon ki lakeeren
mein are all versions of Tera mera saath
rahen so that makes it four times that you get to listen to
this number out of 11 tracks. That's
by the same singers again is run of the mill. Rushing violins in the chiched
Hindi film style, and some heavy drumming from time to time. Lyrics
by Sameer don't exactly give you gooseflesh. Anand Ingle, Praveen Bharadwaj and Gautam
Joglekar also contribute a song each.
Haqh jata de
by Sukhwinder Singh and Hema Sardesai has a memorable
opening line. The antaras or stanzas seem to lose hold of the vision the composer
might have had when he started out. Sukhwinder Singh sounds easy and only
on a few lines does he do his trademark high-pitched shout.
Dum dum diga diga is not a remake of
that old beautiful song, Dum dum diga diga, mausam bhiga
. This is by Atul Kale and Bela Shinde and has a panting-speed dholak
beat. Seems to be a show where a local orchestra performs a
mix of old and recent hit songs.
There is Kaho na pyar hai and
Jadoogar saiyan chodo more baiyan .
Jumbo jet is by Atul Kale. The music is by Rahul Ranade. The
inlay card fails to mention the female voice. A farcical trip in a
jumbo jet where one of the co-passengers is god of whom one can ask boons.
Doesn't match up as a great kid song either.
Dil wahi beqarar hota hai is by Udit Narayan
and Alka Yagnik again. Traces of R D Burman, with a piano playing
up, the guitar chords and the restrained use of dholak and the
Tadapti hai, tarasti hai
by Udit Narayan and Alka Yagnik has lyrics by Praveen
Bharadwaj. Does not pass muster; same fault as the song before. Lush
orchestra, but overfamiliar tunes.
Main sochun by Hariharan and Alka Yagnik is a
slow ballad with some unexpected turns. The key flute phrases are nicely
built into the song. The sax replaces it in the second part of
the stanza. Hariharan keeps strictly to the given tune with no
sudden, ghazal-style improvisations that he is so fond of. The hurried
phrases of the antara are neither graceful nor focused.
Some tunes manage to keep away from sickening familiar,
but this album is no masterly effort that'll make you sit
up and applaud
on 8 October 2001
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