The Lost Flood
Everytime when one talks of Guru Dutt, one remembers his classics like Pyaasa, Kaagaz ke Phool, Sahib Bibi aur Ghulam and Chaudvin ka Chand. Then in further conversation one talks of Mr. & Mrs. 55, Aar-Paar and Baazi. One even remembers Jaal and Baaz. But Sailaab is one movie of his, which is mentioned only in few biographies. Nasreen Munni Kabir’s famous documentary on Guru Dutt also fails to mention it and jumps from Mr. & Mrs. 55 to Pyaasa. Abrar Alvi also doesn’t refer to it in Sathya Saran’s book “Ten Years With Guru Dutt – Abrar Alvi’s journey”. It is listed there at the end in Guru Dutt’s filmography, where only the film title, year of release and the main cast is mentioned. As you might have observed, I was also oblivious of its existence, while I did the Guru Dutt Series on my blog. Not totally oblivious, I just thought that it was a shelved project like Gauri.
The first time I read of Sailaab was in Wikipedia. The entry under Sailaab is quite detailed and also provides a synopsis, which is identical to that at Upperstall. Wikipedia informs one further that the film was produced by Geeta Dutt’s brother Mukul Roy and since the film was a flop, she had to declare personal bankruptcy.
Baburao Patel is supposed to have described it as boring, stupid and incoherent. He finds it to have been made without imagination and sees it as a perfect instrument of torture.
The movie stars Geeta Bali, Abhi Bhatacharya, Smriti Biswas, Helen and Bipin Gupta. An interview with Smriti Biswas and her memories of her work with Guru Dutt can be read here.
The Wikipedia lists the 10 songs for Sailaab (1956). The music director is the producer himself, Mukul Roy. The lyrics are by Majrooh Sultanpuri and Hasrat Jaipuri. This source names other lyricists as well viz., Shailendra and Madhukar Rajasthani.
Hai Yeh Duniya Kaunsi – Hemant Kumar
Hai Yeh Duniya Kaunsi – Geeta Dutt
Baje Dil – Lakshmi Roy
Yeh Rut Yeh Raat Jawaan – Geeta Dutt
Tan Pe Rang Sakhi – Geeta Dutt, Chorus
Jiyra Baat Nahin Maane – Geeta Dutt
Kisi Ke Pyar Ki Tasveer (Chand ke Aansoo Shabnam Bankar) – Geeta Dutt
Aa Gayi Aa Gayi Re Raat Rang Bhar Aa Gayi – Geeta Dutt
Nahin Deri Karo Meri Baiyaan Dharo – Geeta Dutt
Prabhu Aayi Pujaran Tere Angana – Geeta Dutt
The song hai yeh duniya kaun si is soulful, sung by Geeta Dutt and Hemant Kumar in their inimitable style. The two versions have different lyrics. Lyrics: Majrooh Sultanpuri
Tan pe rang sakhi re sounds to be a devotional song. It might be a song accompanying the dance in front of the deity revered by the community, which supposedly „doesn’t allow its members to marry “. I presume it means not to marry anybody outside the community. Lyrics: Majrooh Sultanpuri
Aa gayi aa gayi re raat rangbhari aa gayi seems to be the song, which accompanies the bridal night. The prelude sounds like straight out of the Arabian Nights. From the synopsis in Wikipedia and Upperstall, the story sounds like a modern-day Shakuntala. Much recently Ram Teri Ganga Maili also had a similar plot. Lyrics: Hasrat Jaipuri
The song listed as Chand ke Aansoo Shabnam Bankar sounds to my ears chandani aansoo shabnam ban kar. It is mostly probably sung by Kanchan (Geeta Bali) after Gautam (Abhi Bhattacharya) leaves her and moves to Calcutta and loses his memory once again and doesn’t return back to her.
Jiyara baat nahin maane is also sung by Geeta Dutt. Lyrics: Hasrat Jaipuri
This is all that I could get to this film. I couldn’t find a VCD or DVD, when I was in India last time.
It seems the film-maker Anurag Kashyap, who wanted to make a biopic on Guru Dutt also never managed to get hold of this film. He calls it the missing link. Sailaaab is also the name of the Madhuri Dixit film with Aditya Pancholi, where she gyrates to humko aaj kal hai wearing a Koli costume.
I am somehow sure that this film is not one of the peaks in Guru Dutt’s career. All the same I would have loved to watch it. The above information is all that I have to this film. Do you know more about Sailaab? I would be very grateful for any information that you could provide.