I was planning to review two movies starring Nutan- both previously watched and liked. One was Dilli Ka Thug and the other movie was to have been Paying Guest – a movie I love because of the Dev Anand- Nutan pairing and the music. But there was a change in plan after I came across this lesser known film of hers – Zindagi Ya Toofan opposite Pradeep Kumar. In general, I am fond of Muslim socials and thought I would enjoy this one too. So I started watching it but gave up after the first 10 minutes – the print was bad and somehow it failed to get my attention. Maybe some day I will get around to watching it…
And then it struck me that of the four films Dev Anand and Nutan worked in, I had yet to see Baarish. Tere Ghar Ke Saamne and Paying Guest – I love. Manzil (1960) was sad – despite the lovely songs. So Baarish it was to be – and it was there on youtube.
Baarish, directed by Shankar Mukherjee, is based on a short story by the Late Gyan Mukherjee and stars Dev Anand, Nutan, Nana Palsikar, Lalita Pawar, Jagdish Sethi, Madan Puri among others. The movie begins with the message of the story. The viewer is informed that just like rain washes away dust and grime, crime can be washed away from society by honesty.
The story opens on a rainy night in a small town. We are introduced to Gopal (Nana Palsikar), who is fleeing from a police raid. We get to know that he works for a man referred to as Boss. Boss is the most powerful man in this town – he is mean and big and bad! So he does not like it when he hears about Gopal being on the run and the foiled robbery.
We then meet Gopal’s nasamajh bhai – Ramu, our hero.
He is throwing his weight around in the chawl and gets into a fight with some guys. The local goon, another employee of Boss, Mohan (Anwar Hussain) comes and gets him out of trouble. And our hero traipses along singing, with two pigeons in his pockets, and one on his hand.
Ramu who basically does nothing for a living knows that his brother is up to no good. And also suspects that Boss is no benevolent employer. After a few days in hiding, Gopal shows up and the brothers have a tearful reunion.
As they are about to eat, Gopal is summoned by Boss. Boss expresses his displeasure; Gopal protests and mentions that he wants to stop leading this life of crime. On the way back, Boss gets Gopal killed – Ramu witnesses this crime and is certain that Boss is behind it. And what does our hero do? Go to Boss and yell and shout.
Boss wants Ramu also to be killed. Mohan, a dear friend of Ramu’s, assures Boss that he will get Ramu out of the way and hence he should not be killed.
Mohan cooks up a story to calm the agitated Ramu and requests him to go down to his village and hand his parents some money. Ramu, who is illiterate, agrees to do so and is out of the way.
And then at the village, after 25 mins of the movie time, our heroine makes an appearance. Ramu is being harassed by a bevy of village belles. And this is observed by Chanda, atop a tree. As she is Mohan’s sister and has overheard Ramu’s conversation, she wants to know more and calls out to him.
Ramu is fed up and fights with Chanda. A couple of cute fights later, Ramu has handed the money to Chanda and Mohan’s ma, Lailta Pawar, in a very forgettable role. And before he can leave, Mohan’s dad has died after extracting a death-bed promise from Ramu that he shall look after his wife and daughter.
Not too happy and still sparring, and with Chanda and Ma in tow, Ramu comes back to town- to find that Mohan is in jail. Mohan requests him to take care of Chanda and his mom. So the two women move into Ramu’s small house. Some sparring and cute fights later, Ramu and Chanda are in love.
To arrange money for his wedding, Ramu goes to Boss for a loan. And who does he spot there? His brother’s killer. He tries following the guy but does not manage to. Boss cleverly loans him the money for the wedding and plans to extricate his pound of flesh on the wedding night. He calls him out saying that Gopal’s killer has been sighted and lays a trap.
Will Ramu survive this attack and take revenge on Boss? What happens to Chanda and Mohan?
The answers to these questions form the remainder of the movie.
My two cents: Baarish is a time-pass movie – nothing great. It is rather innocuous, not too evil, not too dreary. Dev Anand reprises a role he is very comfortable with. Part grey, part rebel, and mostly decent. His chemistry with Nutan is the highpoint. They are very cute in all the scenes – be it the arguments or the romance. Nutan is decent in the ‘typical heroine‘ role, better before the romance starts and Ramu and Chanda’s marriage. She is spunky and quick to retort. After the marriage, she transforms into a pativrata, sharmili naari and while not overdone, it was not that appealing. She looks very pretty though! Lalita Pawar hardly has a role – she plays a dukhiyari ma and keeps crying. Mehmood, Kumkum (as Boss’s moll), Madan Puri, Kumud Tripathi all have two scene roles. They flit in and flit out before you can realise.
No where close to Tere Ghar Ke Saamne or Paying Guest but much better than Manzil, Baarish is a one-time watch – it won’t bore you to death but is no masterpiece either.