Badhti Ka Naam Dadhi

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  • 1974
  • 6.9  (47)

"Badhti Ka Naam Dadhi" is a 1974 Indian Hindi-language film directed by and starring Kishore Kumar, a prolific singer, actor, and filmmaker known for his eccentric and comedic genius in the Indian film industry. This film falls right into Kishore's wheelhouse of work, as it is an inventive and whimsical musical comedy that showcases his signature style of wacky humor, absurdity, and melodious music. Alongside him, the movie features I.S. Johar, known for his comedic roles and unique acting style, and the actress Sheetal among other members of the ensemble cast.

At its heart, "Badhti Ka Naam Dadhi" is a quirky and satirical tale that revolves around the theme of inheritance and greed. The story kicks off when a wealthy man declares in his will that his immense fortune would be inherited by the person who has the longest beard. This peculiar condition creates a chaotic scramble among potential heirs, each trying to outgrow the other by sporting longer facial hair, leading to a series of humorous and bizarre events.

The protagonist of the film, played by Kishore Kumar himself, is amongst those eyeing the inheritance. His character is a blend of naivety and cunningness, someone who's caught up in the madness but also serves as a clever commentator on the absurdities of situations that unfold. As the competition intensifies, we see characters resorting to outlandish measures to ensure their beards appear the longest by fair means or foul, often resulting in visual gags and slapstick comedy.

The plot is episodic, allowing for a variety of comedic sketches, much like a live-action cartoon with an Indian twist. It is through such episodes that the film satirizes various societal norms, human behaviors, and the lengths people will go to for wealth and status. Notable are scenes where characters engage in ridiculous competitions, attempt to sabotage one another's beards, or employ creative methods to give the illusion of facial hair growth.

Kishore Kumar's direction is characterized by his trademark wit and whimsy. He plays with the medium, breaking the fourth wall at times, and directly addressing the audience, thereby engaging them further in the comical misadventures on screen. Aside from directing and acting, Kishore Kumar is also the singer for many of the film's songs, which are interspersed throughout as an integral part of the narrative, another hallmark of many of his films.

The music of the film is one of its highlights, featuring songs with playful lyrics and catchy tunes that reflect the film's comic spirit. The soundtrack includes a mixture of solos and duets, ranging from romantic numbers to comical anthems that serve as both entertainment and furtherance of the plot. The humorous lyrics, often penned and sung by Kishore Kumar himself, complement the quirkiness of the film.

Cinematography in "Badhti Ka Naam Dadhi" uses bright and vibrant colors, typical of Indian cinema of the 1970s. The sets are ostentatious, and the costumes are flamboyant, contributing to the film's exaggerated comedic tone. It's clear that each visual element has been carefully chosen to bolster the surreal, farcical atmosphere that surrounds the characters and their ludicrous pursuits.

I.S. Johar plays a supporting role that adds another layer of humor to the film. Known for his impeccable timing and versatility in comic roles, his character in the movie adds to the hilarity as another contender in the race for the inheritance. The interactions between his character and Kishore Kumar's are marked by quick wit and clever repartee, thus enhancing the comedic experience for viewers.

The actress Sheetal contributes to the romantic subplot of the film, which provides both respite and contrast to the central comedic theme. Her character brings a softer edge to the otherwise relentless comedic pacing of the film, allowing audiences to connect on a different emotional level amidst the laughter and silliness.

"Badhti Ka Naam Dadhi" captures the spirit of the times with its unique form of entertainment, incorporating elements of traditional Indian culture with contemporary humor. The film is an example of how Indian cinema, in this era, was experimenting with new forms of storytelling, embracing the absurd, and showcasing the versatility of its actors and filmmakers.

For fans of Bollywood and Kishore Kumar, "Badhti Ka Naam Dadhi" serves as a reminder of a bygone era where mirthful stories and humorous musical numbers ruled the screen, providing an escape into a world where even the most ludicrous scenario could unfold. While the movie might not have garnered universal critical acclaim compared to more mainstream fare of its time, it has left a lasting impression as a unique, endearing, and laughter-filled affair that only an icon like Kishore Kumar could conceive and translate to the screen.

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    6.9  (47)