Nach baliye – Sowmiya/Shankar/Loy – Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy | Bunty Aur Babli (2005)

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Movie: Produced by Aditya Chopra and directed by Shaad Ali, the Yash Raj Films’ comic caper Bunty Aur Babli (2005) starred Amitabh Bachchan, Abhishek Bachchan, Rani Mukherjee, Raj Babbar, Prem Chopra, late Ravi Baswani, Puneet Issar, Rameshwari, Kiran Juneja, etc. It is a crime-comedy film with slight similarity to the American classic Bonnie and Clyde without the dark elements.

The plot is centered on 2 rather lovable crooks but does not contain violence. All the adventures of Bunty and Babli are thoroughly Indianized, including the counterfeit selling of the Taj Mahal.

Rakesh Trivedi (Abhishek Bachchan) lives in a village with his parents. His father works as a railway ticket collector and wants his son to take up a similar job. But, Rakesh has dreamt big. He keeps ideating on new business plans and is convinced that he would be successful one day. He is stubborn and does not want the kind of work that his father does.

The Punjabi girl Vimmi Saluja (Rani Mukherji) lives in another small village with her parents. She lives to watch movies and study supermodels. She desires to become Miss India. Her parents arrange her marriage with a youth with a decent job. Meanwhile, Rakesh gets an ultimatum to either attend the job interview for which his father has arranged or leave the house.

Rakesh and Vimmi pack their bags and slip out of their homes in the middle of the night. They meet each other at a train station and become friends after listening to each other’s stories. They are supportive to each other for their dreams. Vimmi tries to join the Miss India contest. However, she is thrown out after an argument. Rakesh tries to sell his ideas for an investment scheme. But a businessman rejects his proposal because another man had come first with the idea, which he had stolen from Rakesh.

When Rakesh finds out that the businessman had made money from his idea, he and Vimmi con him and make away with the money, he believes is his. They realize that it is very easy to con people. Thus they decide to take up this profession and reach Mumbai. They find the lifestyle too exciting to give up. They adopt the names of ‘Bunty’ and ‘Babli’ and keep successfully conning different people, looting affluent people disguised as religious priests, business partners, local guides, health inspectors, etc.

Vimmi begins to miss her parents and gives them a call. Soon, they are on the way to Mumbai where they have planned to split up the loot and go in their own ways. During the journey on a goods train, Vimmi thinks she is performing this song with Rakesh.

Song: The lyrics of this song were penned by Gulzar and the music was composed by Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy.

The gist of the song is, “Let’s fly and watch our flight. Let’s do Balle Balle on a Sunday. O, let us dance on the lane where my beloved lives.”

Video: The cinematography is by Abhik Mukhopadhyay. The dance choreography is by Shaimak Davar.

The video opens with Rani Mukherjee beginning to dream about her future with Abhishek Bachchan in the movie. The next shot is of the camera moving inside a tunnel, reaching a disco area. The song has begun in the background. Abhishek Bachchan is first seen entering the stage and beginning the dance slowly.

Rani Mukherjee also enters, slowly beginning to dance with the song. Some female dancers join the dance. Abhishek Bachchan begins to dance in tune with the rapidity of the music. Shaimak Davar also joins in the song. The song rises to a crescendo and ends as the train reaches the station. The announcement about the train arriving there is going on now.

Rani Mukherjee is sleeping and the video ends there.

Artists: The playback for this song was sung by Sowmya Raoh, Shankar Mahadevan, Loy Mendonsa while the onscreen performances are by Abhishek Bachchan,  Rani Mukherji and others.

Cultural Influence: This is a typical filmi Bhangra pop song. I would have preferred some kind of traditionality in the dance. But, it involves a lot of bodily exposure by the girls, including Rani Mukherjee. Nudity removes the beauty and sensuality that could have been shown in the dance. The song really objectifies Rani Mukherjee and the other girls. But, today’s songs are made of these elements only, which disappoints people like us. However, the song can be watched for the artists and the song.

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