Tanhayee – Sonu Nigam – Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy | Dil Chahata Hai (2001)

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Movie: This song appeared in 2001 Excel Entertainment’s National Award Winning comic drama Dil Chahta Hai (The Heart Desires) directed by Farhaan Akhtar and produced by Ritesh Sidhwani. The movie starred Aamir Khan, Preity Zinta, Saif Ali Khan, Sonali Kulkarni, Akshaye Khanna, Dimple Kapadia, Suchitra Pillai, Suhasini Mulay, etc.

The story of the movie involves 3 childhood friends – Akash Malhotra (Aamir Khan), Sameer Mulchandani (Saif Ali Khan) and Siddharth Sinha Aka Sid (Akshaye Khanna). Akash is a non-believer in love and does not have any relationship that lasts beyond 2 weeks. Sameer is an amiable well-meaning, desperate romantic. He is also a confused person, who is prone to romantic infatuations. Every time he finds a girl, he thinks that he has found his soul mate. Sid is a painter by profession and the most mature of the 3. He is not interested in trivial romances and is dedicated to his work.

When he sets his eyes on Shalini (Preity Zinta), during a college party, he sings a song to impress her. He gets beaten up by her fiancé Rohit (Ayub Khan). Akash engineers a breakup between Sameer and his current girlfriend Priya (Suchitra Pillai). Sid meets an older woman Tara Jaiswal (Dimple Kapadia). Tara is a divorcee and is an alcoholic. He actually falls in love with her when he gets to know about her problems with her ex-husband.

When Sid tells his friends about his love, Akash ridicules him. They have an altercation and Sid breaks his friendship with him. Sid leaves for Kasauli for an art workshop. Akash is sent to Australia by his father to take over their company work there. On the flight, Akash meets Shalini and they become friends. Shalini has come to Sydney to meet her maternal uncle. Rohit is a very possessive fiancé. He insists that she should not talk to any other man. Theirs is an abusive relationship. Akash and Shalini move around and begin to date, with her uncle’s permission. When Rohit comes to know about their meetings, he decides to visit Sydney himself.

Back in India, talks of Sameer’s marriage begin at home. Sameer meets Pooja (Sonali Kulkarni) in this way. He thinks he has fallen in love with her. But, she has a pseudo-romantic somewhat childish boyfriend. Sameer begins to stalk her without her knowing. Pooja realizes that this boyfriend is not for her and dumps him. Sameer gathers some guts to talk to her and they begin to date each other. They, soon, realize that they are really in love with\each other.

Sid’s mother (Suhasini Mulay) broaches the subject of his marriage. He reveals to her that he is in love with Tara and Tara, inadvertently, overhears this conversation. After a small argument with her, he decides to go away from this place for some time taking his mother with him. Post a trip to the opera, Akash and Shalini realize that they are in love with each other. Due to the presence of Rohit in the picture, both do not reveal their secrets to each other. Rohit is not only in the picture, he has come to Sydney to take her back home for marriage. Shalini invites Akash to her uncle’s home for a last dinner-date. While Akash is leaving, Shalini tells him that she knows Akash has fallen in love with her and tells him she would tell him, one day, the reason she is marrying Rohit instead. When Akash leaves, this song is heard in the background.

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

The gist of the song is, “Only loneliness is present on the path toward love. How did I stumble on this path? All my dreams are broken. There is only disillusionment around. All the happiness is gone. My life is also lost. I loved you and received in return loneliness as punishment.”

Video: Cinematography is by Ravi K Chandran.

The video opens with Aamir Khan leaving Preity Zinta’s uncle’s home. Preity Zinta looks after him with sorrow. She begins to cry. The next shot is of Aamir Khan sitting in the backseat of a moving car.

The music and the song begin in the background. Aamir Khan goes back to his daily routine but is continuously in thoughts and has to request people to repeat what they had just said. Preity Zinta is about to board a plane back to India with Ayub Khan. But, she keeps looking back, if Aamir Khan has come to the airport.

He hasn’t. She is disappointed and leaves. On the other hand, Aamir Khan loses sleep over her. Preity Zinta is back home and spends more time alone. He is also lonely. In the beginning, Aamir Khan is shown to be a happy-go-lucky fellow. But, now he is more somber and serious.

Artists: The playback of this song was sung by Sonu Nigam and the onscreen performances are by Aamir Khan, Preity Zinta and others.

Cultural Influence: There is not much cultural influence on this typically filmi sad song. The hero and the heroine cannot reveal their love for each other because the heroine is engaged to someone else. The song and the artists are very good. The video is watchable for them.

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