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Pataakha song: Gulzar goes digital, Malaika Arora’s desi performance lights up 'Hello Hello'

While the song's lyrics and music are not up to the mark, Arora’s performance helps the Pataakha track.

Mayur Lookhar

We live in the digital age and lyricists don't hesitate to incorporate new words into their songs. Amitabh Bhattacharya did that wonderfully in 'The Break Up' song from Ae Dil Hai Mushkil (2016) using words like 'WhatsApp', a messaging application, in one of the verses. Gulzar has always been innovative, but it is perhaps for the first time that the legendary writer-poet has been bitten by the digital age. He makes use of words like 'network' and 'WhatsApp' in the 'Hello Hello' song for Vishal Bhardwaj’s Pataakha. 

Champa (Radhika Madan) is out with her boyfriend (Namit Das) at the village carnival and is about to enjoy a ride on the Ferris wheel. She asks him whether he does anything apart from bird watching. He replies saying he is looking for a job and has already applied at a telecommunication company. Naive Champa has no inkling what telecommunication means. The easy way to explain to her is making the gesture of a telephone handset. Champa is enamoured by the ‘hello hello’ and, like a child, keeps the repeating the words. 

Gulzar was given the task to pen a song for this situation. So, it is natural to expect words like 'network' and 'WhatsApp' to seep in. The few odd etch words are minced with rustic lyrics. Thematically, the song seems fine but the overall lyrics do not fit in together and are appealing only in parts. One wouldn’t call it poor, but for a Gulzar song, 'Hello Hello' is a below expectation.

Bhardwaj's films tend to have one sensual desi number in them. Gulzar and Bhardwaj combined to give the classic 'Beedi Jalaile' song in Omkara (2006). The song had Bipasha Basu raising temperatures. Here, Bhardwaj brings in Malaika Arora.

Choreographer Ganesh Acharya, too, has stuck to the theme of the song. Bhardwaj’s composition is not as boisterous as that of 'Beedi', and Acharya has given easy-paced yet elegant moves to Arora. More than the dance moves, Arora stuns with her expressions. The sensuous Arora makes the song visually appealing. 

Singer Rekha Bhardwaj has a voice that is apt for the rustic, sensuous numbers. She gave us the unforgetful 'Namak Ishq Ka' in Omkara (2006). In terms of lyrics, 'Hello Hello' pales in comparison to the Omkara song, but as a singer, Rekha has performed with equal finesse. Without losing her natural rustic tone, Rekha adds an element of sexiness to the song.  

If Gulzar disappoints, Vishal, too, doesn’t bring his best to the music. The tempo of the track soon changes thus breaking the rhythm.  

There are dialogues before the intro and in the antara. Genda’s (Sanya Malhotra) feisty conversation with her boyfriend add to the flavour of the song. 

Despite its shortcomings, the song does manage to attract attention.  

Pataakha is set to be released on 28 September.

Watch the 'Hello Hello' song below:

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