Baar baar dekho hazaar baar dekho – Mohammad Rafi – Ravi – Shammi Kapoor | China Town (1962)

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A little girl called Dolly also lived in our building. She used to be a great friend of Mom. She would always say the opposite of what I told her. Whenever she would come home, I would tease her – Baar baar dekho hazaar baar dekho Dolly ho (Dolly is present), – a part of the song I am reviewing today. Promptly, she would sing – Dolly nahin ho (Dolly is not present)!

Movie:

This song – Baar baar dekho hazaar baar dekho – appeared in Shakti Films’ China Town (1962) produced and directed by Shakti Samanta. The movie starred late Shammi Kapoor, Shakila, late Madan Puri, Helen and late Tun Tun. This movie’s Tamil remake was Kudiyirundha Koyil (1968) with M G Ramachandran and the Telugu remake was Bhale Thammudu (1969) with N T Rama Rao. Don (1978) with Amitabh Bachchan apparently has borrowed some elements of the plot from this movie. Don (1978) was later remade into several movies about a lookalike working as a secret agent disguised as a gangster.
Mike (Shammi Kapoor) is a China Town gangster and is captured by the police after a chase. Shekhar (Shammi Kapoor again) is a young singer, living in Darjeeling with his widowed mother. He loves Rita (Shakila), the only child of the rich Rai Bahadur Digambarprasad Rai (S N Bannerji). One day, Rita comes to the club, where Shekhar works to watch him sing. That is when Shekhar sings this song.

Song – Baar baar dekho hazaar baar dekho:

Lyrics of this song were penned by Majrooh Sultanpuri and music was composed by Ravi.
The man describes his beloved in this song thus, “Look at her again and again because my beloved is worth looking at. Yes, others may have their own beloveds. But this kind of beauty is not in them. The beauty is beyond imagination and the style is matchless.”

Video:

The cinematography is by Dwarka Divecha. Dance choreography is by Surya Kumar.
The video begins with the shot of a small clubhouse, where a drummer drums away, enthusiastically. Then the focus of the camera is Shammi Kapoor, who is playing the guitar. The extra dancers move with small delicate movements. Their dresses are very simple maybe following the black and white format of the movie where much depth cannot be discerned.

Shammi Kapoor walks towards Shakila in small steps and catches hold of her hand. Then again, he moves towards the orchestra in small steps, still dancing. Shammi Kapoor moves in varied ways within the small movements.

2 men get up and are about to leave. But Shammi Kapoor asks them if they are jealous of his love and makes them go back to their seats. Shakila is not able to tolerate his pranks and leaves the clubhouse. Thus ends the video.

Artists:

The playback singer is Mohammad Rafi and Shammi Kapoor lip-syncs to the song. Shakila and others look on.

Cultural Influence:

The song is very good. If you want to sway to any song, this is the one. During heavy rains, we cannot go out. At that time, we can have a warm cuppa tea or coffee with pakoras (fritters), while watching this song. The song is worth a suno for the vocals by Rafi Sahab. The video is watchable for Shammi Kapoor’s antics.

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