There are some motifs that always fly in Bollywood. There is unkahi mohabbat, there is maa kaa pyaar and then there is teri meri yaari or buddies to die for.
Buddies have been lighting up the screen since time immemorial, from the emotional, tear-jerking monochrome ‘Dosti’ to the epic ‘Anand’; friendship as a motif has always worked wonders, but the greatest buddies of all time, definitely have to be Jai & Veeru, who steal, pilfer and cheat, but are also ready to die for each other. Jai & Veeru’s earth shattering success had Amitabh Bachchan being teamed up with almost all male actors of the time as die hard buddies with a single heroine, lost father or some such confusing thread thrown in.
In the eighties, Anil Kapoor, Jackie Shroff and their ilk jumped into the role of buddies who shifted loyalties and gave up their lives, and went through two hour long realisations about the sachchai of their yaari to give us some epic hits, such as ‘Andar Baahar’, ‘Love 86’, ‘Ram Avtar’, ‘Yudh’, ‘Qurbani’ and ‘Do Qaidi’.
When ‘Aankhen’ released in 1993, Govinda and Chunkey Pandey broke the popularity ratings in the pre-internet world. Imagine the memes that would have popped up! Also worth a definite mention are ‘Andaz Apna Apna’, ‘Mai Khiladi Tu Anari’, ‘Tu Chor Mai Sipaahi’ and so on and so forth.
This age of buddies led to the emergence of Saif Ali Khan as a dependable part of two hero movies, so much so, that Chote Nawab spent a better part of his early years, being a part of such ‘yaari’ yarns.
In recent times, movies with more than one male lead are usually only a part of the comedy genre, such as the ‘Housefull’ and ‘Golamaal’ franchises.
Essentially a buddy movie demands a crackling chemistry between the male leads and in the seventies and eighties most of the male stars were buddies in real life, thus their camaraderie would show up on screen making these pot-boilers, record breakers at the box-office.
The soon to be released Dishoom looks at rekindling a true-blue tradition in the form of the reticent Kabir Shergill played by John Abraham and Junaid Khan played by the playful Varun Dhawan. As Junaid declares rather temperamentally, that he is not the Circuit to Kabir’s Munna, nor a Birdman to Kabir’s Batman, he is as much the hero as his bigger, bulkier senior buddy. Because, after all, aren’t friends supposed to be equals!
Dishoom hit theatres this 29th of July