Neend Hamari Khwab Tumhare madlib!

Bring the noise!

I've seen this movie twice in the last six months and I can hardly remember a thing about it. Maybe Nanda (Nishad) and Shashi Kapoor (Anwar) are from different social groups but fall in love anyway? Maybe somebody's parents don't like it? Maybe there's a wacky friend with relationship troubles of his own? (Yes; see above.) I have vaguely pleasant recollections of some mid-60s styles, a very cool tawaif duet,

These ladies were wonderful in "Saqia Ek Jaam"!
and confusion about why Nanda is so pretty in salwar suits but is so unflattered by tennis/riding/ski outfits.

I'm not sure whether the movie's non-impression on me says more about it (unimaginative! unremarkable! forgettable!) or me (flake! scatterbrain! so hopped up on Shashi that she can't keep them all straight!). Instead of worrying about assigning blame, I see this blank slate as an opportunity for a new game. Because I can't really tell you anything about the movie (and thus what I think of it), why don't you tell me? Grab a scrap of paper and a pencil and get ready to write your own film! Fill out this list, then proceed to the illustrated discussion of the film below. No cheating by looking ahead!

1. adjective
2. noun
3. school/academic subject
4. adjective
5. verb, 3rd person singular
6. transitive verb, infinitive
7. verb
8. transitive verb, 3rd person singular
9. verb, infinitive
10. adjective
11. name of a Hindi sports movie
12. noun or noun phrase naming a type of scene typically found in Hindi films
13. adjective
14. noun
15. adjective
16. dramatic noun or noun phrase
17. noun
18. adjective
19. cold place
20. adjective
21. noun or noun phrase expressing something sad, pitiful, and/or undesirable
22. noun
23. adverb
24. transitive verb, 3rd person singular
25. unit of time
26. verb 7 in -ing form
27. onomatopoeic verb, 3rd person singular
28. plural noun

Anwar's parents (Nawab Ajmutullah Khan/Om Prakash and Begum Ajmutullah Farooqui/Manorama) are newely ___1___.

His father tries to impress his new social ___2___, but his mother remains embarrassingly rough around the edges, despite her attempts to learn ___3___. Nishad is a ___4___ young woman. Her dad (Khan Bahadur/Balraj Sahni) agrees with her lifestyle and choices, but her mother (Begum Khan Bahadur/Nirupa Roy) ___5___.

Nisha's father wants ___6___ her to a fellow with questionable morals (see his girly pics in the background) and facial hair (Nawab Shaukat/Manmohan).

Nishad and Anwar meet cute during a near-miss in their cars, demonstrating once again that Shashi cannot ___7___.

Shaukat schemes to get Nishad, but as Nishad continues to cross paths with Anwar, her dislike fades to affection, especially after he ___8___ her life. Anwar really wins her over by pretending ___9___ in the pool at the club, even though it's just a ruse to embrace her and see her ___10___.

___11___, Anwar!
A ___12___ in a flower-filled park cinches it

and they run off hand-in-hand across the horizon.

But alas! When Nishad wants their parents to meet, Anwar has to find a way to stall -

his mother is so ___13___,

and his family's whole identity is a ___14___! He and his father plan to say she is ___15___ so she won't be a part of the visit. But as happens with many wacky schemes, things don't go according to plan,

and Begum Farooqi has a very mixed-up conversation with Begum Bahadur, who manages to handle Begum Farooqi's seeming nonsense with grace.

Meanwhile, another obstacle has appeared! Begum Farooqi wants ___6___ Anwar to one of her relatives, but Nawab Ajmutullah Khan wants Anwar to be with Nishad. The tension causes him to have a ___16___!

The lovebirds remain blissful. Nishad comes over to Anwar's house early one morning

for a ___12___, also outside with lots of flowers.

Awwwwww! They're so happeeeee! But Nishad still doesn't know about Anwar's ___17___, and she makes some disparaging comments without realizing she's insulting him and aggravating the primary threat to their relationship: their ___18___ differences.

If all those weren't enough, yet another stumbling block enters the scene! Nishad's mother wants ___6___ her to a distant relative, Shibbu (Rajendra Nath).

But clearly this will never work, because his hats indicate that he's the comic relief. He has a great line while talking to Nishad about all his marriage proposals that he's issued via letters to the likes of Elizabeth Taylor and Nanda. He realizes needs a new love interest, and he takes a shine to Begum Farooqi's ___3___ teacher, Ms. Paul.

Based on their amazing athletic prowess, Nishad and Anwar are selected to represent the club at the ___19___ sports festival! For reasons not entirely clear to me other than that she's dressed for it, Nishad takes the occasion of a swanky party with jazzy music to try to work her wiles on Anwar, ushering in a ___20___ song on the terrace under a starry sky. But he's too worried to submit and remains stoic as she slinks and wriggles around him.

Or maybe it's her hair that's causing his reserve.
Nishad's mother is furious that her daughter might go off to ___19___ with a man. She responds by placing Nishad under house arrest, which is quite convenient for Shaukat, who is still trying to separate Nishad from Anwar. Khan Bahadur, ever the modern man, declares that Nishad can go with a chaperone, especially because "Anwar is a decent boy and more than that I trust my daughter. She'll never take a wrong step." Hurrah for progressive parenting and attitudes towards young women! And then he takes her shopping. Boooo for trivilalizing love for women by expressing it through materialism!

Anwar is worried as his relaitonship with Nishad becomes closer - he knows he can't ___6 (minus "to")___ her while keeping up his family's façade. "I'd rather have her enmity than love her by deceit." Shashi expresses angst. It seems he can't possibly tell the truth and stay with her - even if her family doesn't mind the class difference, they'll be disappointed that Anwar's family lied. But his father insists he proceed with the lie - he didn't struggle just for his son to revert to their ___21___. And at that, he has another ___16___! Anwar discusses his father's health with a family friend, Dr. Rana, who says his father suffers from a ___22___ complex and that Anwar needn't take that on as his problem as well and should just enjoy being a modern youth and make both Nishad and himself happy by embracing his love for Nishad.

So Anwar, ever the dutiful son but racked with guilt, goes off to ___19___ with Nishad after Dr. Rana promises to deal with her family. Nishad and Anwar win the sports thingy; Khan Bahadur shows his wife the picture of the kids in the paper, and she flips out. "I'm sad. I don't approve of my daughter clicking pictures with strangers!" He laughs at her outdated attitude. She begs him to get Nishad married ASAP so that this sort of sporty, picture-clicking behavior doesn't damage her marriagability further. He says "Hmmm..." but insists on acquiring a prestigious match.

Fortunately, Nawab Ajmutullah Khan's son seems to be just such a match!

Cut to another ___12___! Ahhhh, ___19___! So bracing! So scenic! So conducive to romping in the snow and wearing dorky knitwear!

Though we do not see the pair being told that their marriage has been approved by the two fathers, they seem very celebratory. Perhaps they're just enjoying their sweaters. But as soon as they finish romping, Anwar's doubts creep back, and he pesters Nishad with questions about what "rich" means to her. She doesn't understand why he's concerned with such matters. He frets over the power of love to overcome obstacles; she pouts at his inexplicable negativity and distant brooding. There's another ___12___ in a Mughal garden. At this point I realized that all of Nishad and Anwar's ___12 (pluralized)___ are outside - perhaps their love is so great it cannot be contained by walls?

Anwar comes clean (off-camera, apparently - he says "We're not who you think we are," then there's a pause, then we see the back of his head and he turns around to face her). Nishad is sad that he thought she would be so petty as to care about wealth. It's as though Nishad hasn't seen any Nanda/Shashi movies before, or else she'd know Nanda characters often care about wealth, or at least so they appear, based on all their snobby and dismissive comments about status. She wipes away tears of relief. "Earlier I only loved you, but now I want to worship you," she says. Blurgh. Now it sounds like she's seen Nanda/Shashi movies. "Love is above all this." Oh, that's better. She assures Anwar she'll handle her father, saying he's sure to acquiesce because she'll kill herself if he doesn't. However, Khan Bahadur is upset, and he starts thinking that Shaukat is a much better option, since Shaukat's family is indeed sufficiently prestigious.

The various remaining obstacles, including the father of the woman Begum Ajmutullah wants Anwar ___6___, all continue to threaten the marriage, which is approaching rapidly. Anwar's father schemes while Anwar frets.

In his distracted state, Anwar ___23___ forgets about the connection between smoking and heart disease. You'd think he'd be more savvy, given his father's condition.
The marriage is all set to go until Shaukat ___24___ Nishad, preventing her from getting an important note from Anwar about arrangements for getting to the ceremony. Back at home, Nishad's father is now the one to freak out, enraged about Anwar's family's lie, but her mother is the voice of reason, saying that Anwar is a decent boy and that religion does not teach us to make such exclusive distinctions among people. Once everyone realizes Nishad is missing and Shaukat offers to go find her and bring her back within the ___25___, Dr. Rana puts two and two together.

Anwar takes the opportunity to spout some nonsense about honor, demonstrate how evil Shaukat is, and prove he's not just a pretty, funny, sensitive boy. He rushes off in his car (for once, Shashi's erratic ___26___ is appropriate!), ___27___ Shaukat, and saves Nishad.

They return to the wedding, bearing physical marks of the ordeal. Khan Bahadur is ashamed for ever thinking Shaukat was a worthy man, Nawab Ajmutullah Khan is relieved that his son is okay and that the kids are together, and Begum Khan Bahadur further waxes favorably about Anwar, who has proven himself good and just and wise despite his common ___28___. The union is secure and everyone is happy!

The end!

Share your favorite creations in the comments!


Dude, that is SO well thought out. I am just bowled over by all the intelligence. I need to see this movie, though I do tend to avoid Nanda- she always seems so worried in movies, no matter what she may be doing :) Shashi's white jacketed self looks v v watchable.

I think Rajendra Kumar bears a slight (ok, v slight) resemblance to Prithviraj- I do think i see the family likeness.
Anarchivist said…

Based on those screencaps, being "hopped up on Sashi" seems almost inevitable!
gebruss said…
For somebody who claims not to remember the plot of this movie, there is an awfull lot of detail in there.

I rather like it in all it fluffiness, but then I somehow managed to develop a soft spot for Nanda. Also, people for once had genuine reasons for concern and did try to deal with them in a fairly straightforward manner; they actually talk to each other.
Anonymous said…
Hey Beth plz review Dev D ...... been waiting for ur take on that for long .... its an awesome movie ... u must watch :)
memsaab said…
LOL@Shweta and Nanda being "worried" all the time---I never thought of it, but you are right! She always has that little furrow in her brow :-) (I do love her though).

This is PURE GENIUS, Beth.

And please bring the film with you in May, I am DYING to see it. Dying.
desipolitan said…
Absolutely hysterical! I never realized how nicely Bollywood movies lend themselves to Mad Libs! Funny part is, even with some rather outrageous noun/verb/adj. choices, the result still sounded semi-plausible for a Hindi movie.
Filmi Girl said…

Also, extremely amusing idea for MadLibs (tm)! BollyLibs?
Beth said…
I think BollyLibs are actually how some films must get written. Is there anything a person could fill in at random for what actually happens in, say, Namak Halal that would make any less sense? I think not.

A great way to write your own masala!

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