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Dhadak's 'Pehli Baar' song: Ajay-Atul's magical composition does not lose its touch in Hindi

Composed by Ajay-Atul and sung by Ajay Gogavale, the song is the Hindi remake of another chartbuster from Sairat, 'Yaad Lagla'. 

Shriram Iyengar

Till the film's release, it is inevitable that every mention of Shashank Khaitan's Dhadak will bring back memories of Nagraj Manjule's Sairat (2016).

The latest song, 'Pehli Baar', from the film seeks to recreate the magic of the original's 'Yaad Lagla'.

The makers have done well to keep the original composition of Ajay-Atul unchanged, and the song is the better for it. 

Sung by Ajay Gogavale, the song is a slow symphony that expresses the joy, delirium and innocence of first love.

In Dhadak, Ishaan Khatter's Madhukar jumps into the river as he hears the news of Janhvi Kapoor's Parthavi's whereabouts. The song then flows into its melodious rhythm as he makes his way to jump into the midst of an all-girl frolic, only to be chastized by Kapoor's character. 

The visuals of the song follow the same lines as in the original Sairat, except with a shade of Karan Johar aesthetics. The settings, the brightly coloured shirt of Khatter's character, the grand-looking pond where the girls are playing, all make for picturesque shots.

However, they rob the sequence of the rawness and realism that Manjule's film had. Also, Khatter's movements feel a little too well rehearsed to seem like a spontaneous expression of overflowing emotion. Janhvi Kapoor, while looking beautiful, does not deliver the brashness and confidence Manjule's heroine had, either.

The Sairat faithful might find it all a little jarring, and even criticize the very uber-fashionable portrayal of the characters. However, as a moment of romance, it looks good and fits in with Karan Johar's production values.

Setting that aside, the composition itself is just as beautiful as the original. Ajay Gogavale delivers wonderfully with his serene, slow undulation of the song. But the magic lies in Amitabh Bhattacharya's ability to fit in verses into the specific metre without them seeming odd. It gives the song a very distinct Hindi touch.

Dhadak is directed by Shashank Khaitan, and is set to be released on 20 July. 


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