Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Kasak - remaking Mouna Ragam

Kasak is a story about Divya (Neelam) - the young, carefree, sassy, modern college student who agrees to marry Vijay (Rishi Kapoor) just to please her strict father (Satyen Kappu) due to his illness. Despite being married to Vijay, Divya lives in the home as a stranger and wife. Her heart is still haunted by memories of her dead boyfriend Suraj (Chunkey Pandey). Therefore, she can not go on with the marriage. They end up filing for divorce but only to find out they have to live with each other for one year before the divorce is final. How can Divya continue living with Vijay for another year?

Just a few years ago, I learn that Kasak was a remake of a Tamil film, Mouna Raagam, directed by Mani Ratnam. First I want to say thank you to Bollyviewer for posting up the review on
Mouna Raagam. Just by reading the review, Kasak seems like an exact remake but that doesn't surprise me. Mani Ratnam is a good director. I liked Saathiya and found it it's also a remake of Ratnam's Alaipayuthey. Plus Yuva is a remake of Ratnam's Aayitha Ezhuthu. I wish I could watch the originals but it's hard for me to find Tamil films in Atlanta. Especially with English subs! There's a theater that plays Telugu films but with out English subs!

Neelam is one of my favorite actresses from the 90s era. Always as the cute and modern-dancing girl, I tried to watch all of her films since she has won me over in Ilzaam. Just a few years ago, I recommended Kasak to people who wanted to see more of Neelam. She was never a very popular actress. To me, she's the equilavent of Raveena Tandon. Why? I feel both have been in a lot of films earlier in their career but never really gotten a chance to show off their acting talent. Both did a lot of movies with their former flame, didn't act as much with other co-stars, came back with a bang to show off their talent, and then married and didn't really make a comeback into Bollywood again. In Kasak, Neelam plays Divya very well. She was a carefree girl who turned into a mature woman. I was so used to seeing Neelam playing the heroine in the film just for songs which didn't require a lot of "acting." She really surprise me in this film.

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Rishi Kapoor plays Vijay, the guy Divya marries. I adore Rishi when he was younger but seeing him pairing up with Neelam almost made me throw up!!! Neelam has such a cute baby face. Rishi isn't the cute guy from Bobby anymore but a beer-bellied actor who needs to stop being paired with young heroines at his age. His acting is good but I just didn't like him as the lead hero in Kasak. If they wanted an older guy who would look better with Neelam, couldn't they get Jackie Shroff instead? Or even Anil Kapoor?

Chunkey Pandey plays Suraj, Divya's past flame. Although he has a couple of scenes and a song, it was good to see him. Besides the Govinda/Neelam jodi, I really think the Chunkey/Neelam jodi was cute. However, Chunkey has two left feet but he looks adorable dancing.

Movie starts off with bubbly, mischievous Divya. In college, she thought of a great way to scare off Vijay since he will be at her house waiting for her.

Song #1 - "Barsa Pani"
Hoping she accomplished it, she stays up late and sings in the rain with her friends.

Watch Below

Divya's hard decision - to marry Vijay. For her parents' sake, she accepts the proposal. She finally has to grow up and be more responsible.

You agree to marry. Now you have to go through it.

Kader Khan, Laxmikant Berde,
Aruna Irani, and Aparajita's screen presence should have been taken out. They play Vijay's working colleagues but most of their scenes was a waste of time. It did add some comedy to the movie but should have been avoided.

As husband and wife, Vijay and Divya spend time together. But Divya really would rather be away from Vijay.

Song #2 - "Ek Baar"

Watch Below

Vijay - "I have two gifts for you. Which one do you want? Jewelry or a sari? "
Divya - "How about a divorce? "

Silence feels the car. Song #3 - "Mujrim"

Choose one - divorce or the gift.

Divya's heart has and will always belong to Suraj.

Song #4 - "Dekha Jo"

Divya still wants divorce but has to wait for another year for the divorce to finalize. Therefore, she has to live with Vijay for a full year!

What a day!
Song #5 - "Dil Doodbane"

Divya's never been to the Taj Mahal. Vijay takes her there.
Song #6 - "Ek Taj Mahal"

Divya developing feelings for Vijay? Divya daydreams....
Song #7 - "Mili Tere"

Divya is falling for Vijay. Why does it always have to be like that? Once you start to like someone. He/she doesn't like you as much back. Or is it called "playing hard to get"?

The divorce is finalized now.

I won't spoil the rest of the movie. Remakes are always not as good as the original. Just like books are always better than the movie. If you haven't seen the original version, I do recommend watching Kasak. Don't worry about Rishi Kapoor too much. He actually is charming in the film. Neelam is wonderfull. Chunkey is eye candy, but in a 90s way.


ajnabi said...

I don't get the 90s version of eye candy! Chunkey, Sallu--they all go over my head. LOL Still, this looks cute and I might be able to find it, as opposed to Mouna Ragam which is IMPOSSIBLE to find where I live. And ITA, Jackie would've been awesome in this role, he's totally good-looking and a good actor too (I really am a fangirl, can you tell?).

Nicki said...

Hahaha! I think if you grew up watching Bollywood, there wasn't much men eye candy around. Then when I saw Sallu, Rahul Roy, Chunkey, Govinda, and even Kumar Gaurav, I was in heaven! LOL!!

Woah, Jackie fan? He's good. I think he's still handsome for his age.

Do watch Kasak. I enjoyed it a lot. It seems like it's an exact copy of Mouna Ragam. It's hard for me to find Tamil and Telugu films too.

Bollyviewer said...

Hey Nicki, thanks a lot for the review. This one looks like it has a lot more masala ingredients than Mouna Raagam and probably falls short on sensitivity. But I think Rishi is a good enough actor to overcome his beer-belly in a good movie! lol. Not a fan of Lakshmikant Berde, though. Wish the extra comedy wasnt there - the best part of Mouna Raagam was that there was no gratuitous comedy! But still... I think I'll try to get it.

ajnabi, you may be able to find an online source - streaming video or torrents for Mouna Raagam if the DVD is impossible to find.

Shweta Mehrotra Gahlawat said...

Seriously, I think that was some brilliant insight on Neelam and Chunkey. Sure they are forgotten actors- but I loved Neelam, and I think Chunky is doing some really great cameos these days.

Nicki said...

bollyviewer - You are very welcome! Yeah, I think the comedy bit should've been left alone cause it had nothing to do with the storyline. Plus Rishi and Neelam hardly had any scenes with them. The only scene was when Neelam met them.

Shweta - I totally agree on that! Chunkey has been doing good cameos lately. I wish I had a better pic of him when I saw him in Atlanta a few years ago. As for Neelam, I loooove her. I think she still still looks pretty damn good. I couldn't believe she was only 14 years old when she debuted in Jawani.

Raaga said...

I was looking for the name of the Hindi remake of Mouna Raagam and landed here.

Yuwa is not a remake as such, it is Maniratnam's movie. He made both simultaneously :)

As is Raavan, which released today.

Raaga said...

I was looking for the name of the Hindi remake of Mouna Raagam and landed here.

Yuwa is not a remake as such, it is Maniratnam's movie. He made both simultaneously :)

As is Raavan, which released today.

Anonymous said...

I didn't like the Hindi version. People please don't watch the Hindi version. i assure you would not like it that much except the plot. please watch the original "mouna ragam" u can get the subtitles if u don't get the language. the plus point in the original is its music , background score and songs are very touching and melodious created by Illayaraja (the great). even the person who doesn't know the language will find the songs melodious. Honestly saying, i watched the whole Tamil version without subtitles though i don't speak Tamil and yet i thoroughly felt good and impressive with movie-actors, bgm, songs and story.Please i recommend you to watch Tamil version.

nita said...

This is my favourite movie too..I watched it wen I was 12 now I saw it again and I liked it...