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Customer reviews

5.0 out of 5 stars
Pyaasa [DVD] [1957]
Format: DVD|Change
Price:£9.99+ £1.26 shipping

on 29 October 2010
This is a beautiful, souful, moving film.

Vijay is a struggling artist, a jobless poet who nobody seems to take seriously. No-one will publish his poems and his brothers sell some of them that they find in their house for scrap paper. Luckily for Vijay, these scraps are bought by a prostitute, Gulabo, who is rather taken by them. She falls for Vijay, and the two strike up a friendship. Along the way, Vijay comes across his old love from college, Meena, and comes to know that she is married to a publisher.

As the story goes on, a twist involving Vijay lending his jacket to a begger causes confusion and people suddenly take an interest in Vijay's poems. Vijay is turned on by his "friends" and becomes even more disillusioned with the world. But will he take fame over integrity? You will have to watch the film and see!

Guru Dutt not only produces and directs, but also stars as Vijay, and gives a stellar performance. Johnny Walker, Dutt's dear friend in real life, is a real hoot as Abdul Sattar the masseur and proves to be one of Vijay's true friends. The poetry and music is beautiful, and the film will surely stir the emotions of the viewer.

This film often features in "Greatest films ever" lists, even outside of India. I highly recommend that you watch it.
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on 15 July 2013
Approaching 60 years old, dark, high-contrast, tragedy-noire perhaps close to the pathos of Douglas Sirk, who would have been in Hollywood a contemporary of Guru Dutt, and the drama of Orson Welles. A superb pice of cinema that tugs at the romantic heart in many of us. Enjoyable and sets the scene for Dutt's masterpiece "Kagoz Ki Phool" or Paper Flowers. Dutt over-dosed or committed suicide six or seven years later and there are those who believe every film he ever made was his visualisation of the melancholia that perhaps drowned his soul, like it does with many of us. Must watch.
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Guru Dutt is a true maverick of 'Indian cinema' and endeavours to explore complex issues with controversial subjects ,and in this immaculately staged urban drama on the hypocritical double standards of the "publishing media",combined with a morose love affair between a struggling "exploited poet" and the daughter of a rich industrial magnate ,he has created a fascinating yet realistic world of 'vultures and preys',prostitutes and pimps, who have no morality except greed as their sole motivation ,where everything is for sale including poetry ,and yet there is a glimmer of hope too ,which is metaphorically expressed in various forms throughout the dark narrative in an ingenious script.

The intellectal poet played by 'Dutt' himself, is jilted by his rich lover' Mala Sinha', who marries 'Rahman', a vicious and corrupt "publisher baron ",who regularly cheats the intellectuall middle man or "creative artist" out of their publishing royalties .

The theme is overtly different and the sensitive execution renders it into a lyrical cinematic gem which shines more brightly today after half a century of it's creation in 1957.

Dutt enters into another relationship with a prostitute,"gulaboo"-played memeroably a young 'Waheeda rehman'against the traditional foil of formulaic 'nice Indian cinema woman'as a streetwalker, who sells her body to feed her young child ,and together they endeavour to reform their own lives and their sordid milieu .

This is a dark world of squalor ,sickness ,loathsome under-handed deals, and innocent souls on sale with no glimpse of optimisim or redemption .

The overtly pessimistic story is shrouded in almost auto-biographical terms as well as adorned with gorgeous monochrome visuals and some amazing poetry by "Sahir Ludhianvi" tuned by the immensely talented "S.D.Burman" with a style that borders on 'neo-real drama' yet remains a sheer poetic sololiquy in a magical portent .

The vision of Guru dutt in a social comment on the plight of under-rated intellectuals in a consumerist estblishment ,rendered in a consummately masterly technical style, enhancing the drama to a grand climax which will leave the most cynical critics dumbfounded and immersed in it's poignant emotional empathy.

Dutt and Waheeda Rehman are superb, and this is their jewel in the crown, that transcends the boundary of make -believe to become an eternal truth, shrouded in a dark mellow beauty,with tremendous performances and a haunting musical score which is possibly the best ever created by the genius of 'sachin da ' from 'piano sonatas' to graceful dream songs amidst magical 'waltzing with violins', and the sheer misery of the underworld reflected in the 'theme song' itself sung soulfully by Muhammad Rafi, lambasting the gross injustice in the society.

This fathoms you in a harrowing web where you experience the emotions of every character , and their desires and failures become vitally important to the discerning viewer.
A must see .
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on 5 December 2016
Classic film, perfect present. Arrived before due date :)
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on 27 September 2016
good dvd
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