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Remembering Harivansh Rai Bachchan


On the illustrious Hindi poet's 109th birth anniversary, we rewind to three memorable moments from son Amitabh's film career that were crafted with his works.

Sonal Pandya

1. Alaap (1977)

Hrishikesh Mukherjee's Alaap (1977) is a forgotten feature on the conflicts between a father and son on the path he should take in life. Starring Om Prakash as Triloki Prasad, a noted advocate, and Amitabh Bachchan as his son Alok, who is drawn to a vocation in music, the film had an excellent score by Jaidev. Amitabh Bachchan delivered a restrained performance in Alaap, in contrast to his popular image of the ‘Angry Young Man’. The song, 'Koi Gata Main So Jata,' sung by KJ Yesudas, was the first time the illustrious author and poet became a part of his famous son's movie career.

2. Silsila (1981)

One of Hindi cinema's best loved Holi songs in Yash Chopra's Silsila (1981) is filled with fun times, laughter and lots of lingering tension between the film's two couples, Amit and Shobha, played by Amitabh and Jaya Bachchan, and Chandni and Dr Anand, played by Rekha and Sanjeev Kumar. Sung by Amitabh Bachchan, the folk song was based on a traditional Meera bhajan and has become a staple at Holi celebrations.

3. Agneepath (1990)

Apart from contributing to the title of the film, the poem 'Agneepath' by Harivansh Rai Bachchan also features strongly in Mukul Anand's Agneepath (1990), bookending the film with a powerful message of truth and choosing the right path in life. The poem, recited by Amitabh Bachchan, features strongly in the film's emotional finale. Bachchan won his first National award for Best Actor for his role as Vijay Deenanath Chavan.