Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Conveys the essence of true love like no other film I've eve
Daniel Jolley | Shelby, North Carolina USA | 10/25/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"My discovery of Indian cinema has been almost a spiritual experience. It's like going from black and white to color for the first time. Compared to a movie like this, American and European films have no heart, no vitality, no color, and no passion. And I've never seen any love story that could compare to the one in this film. I've never seen the true definition of love expressed as deeply as it is here - and it is love in its purest form. I know I'm old-fashioned, but, for me, Hollywood ruins every good love story it manages to produce by making everything about sex. You don't have that in India cinema - you don't even have kissing; what you do have, though, are the depths and power of love expressed in ways Hollywood can't even comprehend.
Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam has everything you could want in a movie - romance; comedy; fantastic music, singing, and dancing; elaborate set designs and magnificent locations; stellar performances; and, of course, the most beautiful woman in the world, Aishwarya Rai. I'm trying to get my hands on all of her movies as quickly as I can. She's incredible in this 1999 classic, as are the two leading men who form the other two sides of the most poignant of love triangles. Salman Khan plays Sameer, a free spirit who comes to India from Italy to study music under Nandini's father. Nandini (Rai) isn't happy about this at all, but she and Sameer are soon engaged in some serious flirting. A strong love grows up between the two, only to be torn asunder by Nandini's father, who sends Sameer away with a promise to never meet his daughter again. A heartbroken Nandini is compelled to marry a young lawyer named Vanraj (Ajay Devgan). She doesn't love Vanraj, but he is an exceedingly good man who loves her dearly. For all her continued grieving over Sameer, it is Vanraj who eventually shows her what true love really is. The ending is just exquisite, a true emotional climax that brings both pain and joy to your heart at the same time.
The movie runs a little over three hours (which is pretty much the norm in India), but it is in no way too long. If you have a heart, it will be swept away during the second half of the film. The story and the passionate performances by Rai, Khan, and Devgan would be more than enough on their own to make this a stellar film - but Indian cinema gives you so much more than that. Music plays an integral part in the film, and every single musical scene is amazing (and, besides chapters, you can also jump directly to any musical number on the DVD). The one performance that really stands out, for me, is Nimbooda, which features Rai in a beguiling song and dance routine. Subtitles are always an issue with a foreign language film, but the English subtitles here are really rather good and certainly allow you to follow the film closely.
I'm having a hard time trying to convey the sheer magic of this incredible film. The love story puts Hollywood romances to shame, the performances are heart-felt and virtually guaranteed to make you laugh and cry, the cinematography is extraordinarily vivid, and I just can't get over how powerfully the film conveys the essence of true love. And even if you took all of that away, the mere opportunity to watch Aishwarya Rai for over three hours makes the DVD well worth the price. She is as talented as she is gorgeous."
Achingly beautiful and wonderfully cast Bollywood film...
D. Pawl | Seattle | 07/10/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is yet another great example of when Bollywood films have the power to penetrate our hearts, open our minds and linger in our souls. Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam (Straight From the Heart--English translation) features beautiful, colorful and luscious cinematography, attractive and well-cast leading actors, melodious and soulful music, energetic dance numbers and a great combination of humor, high drama and romance.
Nandini (Aishwarya Rai) is the beautiful daughter of the singer, Pandit Darbar (Vikram Gokhale), who takes on a music pupil in Sameer (Salman Khan), a half-Italian/half-Indian young man who travels all the way from Italy to learn singing. Nandini falls in love with him, straight away. The conflict is that Vanraj (Ajay Devgan), a young lawyer, has sent a proposal to Pandit, requesting his daughter's hand in marriage. Once the two lovers are caught together, Pandit demands that Sameer leave and forget his daughter. The selfless and faithful Vanraj comes to know his wife, Nandini's love for Sameer, and promptly decides to reunite the two in Italy, even though he is very much in love with her.
This is a beautiful story about coming to learn the importance of respect and faith in a relationship, and how even the biggest tests can actually bring people together, overtime. Nandini must decide whether to follow her heart or her soul, when she is torn between the undying love of her husband or her love for Sam.
Great movie! Don't miss it. The three plus hours will fly by as you grow increasingly more engrossed in this romantic, intriguing and beautifully made film. I also reccomend I Have Found It, also starring Aishwarya Rai."
By far, the best movie I've seen to date
G. Jennings | Outside | 11/20/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is one of Bollywood's finest films to date.
At the heart of this story is a wonderful tale of what True Love is all about. Brilliant choreography, cinematography and script. This film won several awards at India's Filmfare Festival. Aishwarya Rai's best role.
Sameer is from Italy and goes to India to study traditional Indian Music under the tutelage of a master pundit. His daughter, Nandini, is not keen on the idea at first because she has to give up her room for her guest. Secondly, Sameer is a goofy nut and prankster but loves Nandini passionately from the heart. The same applies to his singing which has earned Pundit's interest to teach him, applying no fees for the lessons. Overtime, Nandini falls deeply in love with Sameer, not knowing her parents have arranged for her to marry Valraj, a respectable, honest but somewhat boring lawyer. Of course in any large family, there is a scheming relative who provides the catalyst for shattering the worlds of the lovers, stirring up a family feud and having Sameer evicted from the home as penance for his flirtatious whims with young Nandini. Both lovers part broken-hearted, most especially Nandini who falls into a lifeless stupor.
Nandini marries Valraj, the lawyer, but does not tell him of her love life with Sameer despite Valraj's request to base their marriage on truth and communication. He eventually finds out, and while at first angered by the news, does the bravest thing of all. He takes Nandini to Italy to rejoin her with her lover.
The trek to Italy is itself its own adventure. Nandini and Valraj have no leads to finding Sameer. They search from place to place asking individuals who might have seen him. They even have a bad interlude with the locals that put their lives in danger. Valraj is nonetheless steadfast in his quest which gradually earns Nandini's respect for him. Now, Nandini has a difficult choice to make as she begins to learn what true love really is.
This is an amazing story and definitely a tear jerker. It is true that the Italy scenes were filmed in Hungary, but that by no means, inhibits the plot. This is a Bollywood film keeper. Also, the CD is worth the buy."
Ankit Jhunjhunwala | Mumbai, India | 10/10/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Yes. Simply Outstanding. This is truly one of the best Bollywood movies to come out in a long, long time. A great commercial hit back in our India, it also swept all the major awards. Though I'm from India where Bollywood movies are compulsory watching, I dislike them for their absurdity but this film has me raving about it. Its simply fabulous.
Set in western India in a prosperous Gujarti household overflowing with people, lives Nandini, our heroine (the beautiful Ashwariya Rai), daughter of a renowned singer Pandit Durbar. Sameer (Salman Khan), a handsome young Italian who comes to learn classical music from the Pandit falls in love with his daughter. As the movie enfolds, we watch the beautifully enacted comedy of the star crossed lovers. But once the father comes to know, all hell breaks loose. Sameer is thrown out of the house, Nandini's heart is broken and she is married of to a young, respectable and well mannered suitor Vanraj (Ajay Devgan) who truly loves her but is detested by Nandini. But the husband also discovers about the affair, is heartbroken too, but decides to take Nandini to Italy to meet her lover.
As the plot moves to Italy (Hungary actually, which the director would have us believe as Italy), we are engaged in Nandini's and Vanraj's troubles of living in a foreign country, finding Sameer and living with each other. As she searches for her love, Nandini comes to know her husband and how much he truly loves her and realizes his grief and sense of loss in losing her. When she finally does find Sameer, she's torn between the two and must choose one of the them and break the heart of the other.
This is Bollywood at its best. Here the wonderful music that goes with this film, it underlines each scene with its sparkling melody. Also the set pieces are lavishly mounted and the music numbers burst upon the sceen. The movie is also very beautifully shot.
This movie also captures Ashwariya rai at her best. She is miraculously beautiful and lights up the screen whenever she's on it. All in all a must watch Bollywood affair. Iwould also recommend the same directorr's (Sanjay Leela Bhansali) Black, which is the story of a dumb, deaf and blind girl.