India’s own Top Gun made 6 years before Tom Cruise movie – Entertainment News, Firstpost

Four years before Tom Cruise’s ’80s blockbuster Top Gun hit US theaters, there was a Hindi-language film with a similar theme. A movie that is now largely forgotten.

Tony Scott top gun (1986) was part of the American zeitgeist of the 80s. Rambo movie, first terminator movies and back to the future franchise. It was a worldwide commercial success, tom cruise A star to consider. It featured the trials and tribulations of an American fighter pilot (Tom Cruise) codenamed Maverick. top gun. The film was partially inspired by an article of the same name by Israeli author Ehud Yonai. California It was published in the magazine in May 1983. It featured stunning aerial action sequences including shots of dogfights and aerial acrobatics.

4 years ago top gun And just a year before the article that inspired this article, there was an Indian Hindi film made on a similar theme, but this time about Indian Air Force pilots. Angad Singh (Kunal Kapoor) didn’t have a call sign as we know it, but when he enrolled in India’s elite military school, the National Defense Academy (NDA), Pete “Maverick” Mitchell may have been about the same age as He is not as brave as Mabu. In fact, when Angad tries to find his way by signing up for his NDA, he’s pretty lost and confused. Just like Maverick, he has daddy issues. Mav’s father was traumatized by an incident during the Vietnam War, while Angad’s father had troubled relationships with his son.Mav found the love of his life in Charlie (Kelly McGillis), and Angad had Anna. There is Supriya Pathak.the movie is Villeta (1982) and there weren’t many close-quarters dogfight sequences, but the spectacular aerial shots taken by Govind Nihalani may actually be better than Jeffrey L. Kimball’s shots . top gun cinematography.

Villeta It was conceived in the early 1980s when Air Force Secretary Dilberg Singh met Shashi Kapoor in Delhi and said he wanted to make a film to mark its 50th anniversary.th Anniversary of the Indian Air Force (IAF). The IAF was officially founded by him on October 8, 1932. Dilberg Singh pledged all support from the IAF, including filming the expansion at the Air Force Academy in Hyderabad and the Defense Academy in Pune. This was the first time the IAF had officially participated in the production of a film. In its briefing to Shashi Kapoor, the IAF said it wanted something new and exciting to attract and involve more young people. They didn’t want the traditional narrative of sacrificing military officers who went to war and lost their lives. They wanted a modern story.

Nearly 20 years before this, Shashi Kapoor befriended a young assistant cinematographer named Govind Nihalani on the set of Akhtar Mirza’s film. Mohabat Isco Kajete Hain (1965). Govind was obsessed with cinema from an early age, but his love of cinematography began when he came across the work of legendary cinematographer VK He Mercy. Carga’s Ke Fool (1959) and Sahib Bibi Aur Ghuram (1962). Murthy in 1946 he studied technology at the Jayachamarajendra Polytechnic. Fifteen years before FTII was founded, it was the first institute in India to offer a course in cinematography. Inspired by his mentor, Govind Nihalani joined Polytechnic and graduated in 1962, learning not only cinematography but also the art of filmmaking.The first major project he landed after graduating was Mohabat Isco Kajete Hain There he helped the photographer Sat Prakash. The film starred Shashi Kapoor and Nanda. On a set ruled by old timers, Shashi may have found a soul of his kind in Govind. Both had similar artistic inclinations and were the same age. Govind he was 25 and Shashi he was 27. Shortly after this film, the two went their separate ways, trying to find their own voices in film. While Shashi solidified his career as a leading man in mainstream Hindi cinema, Govind Nihalani assisted his idol his VK Murthy in his three iconic Pramod Chakraborty films. Love in Tokyo (1966), Tumse Acha Kaung Hai (1969) and Zamana Naya (1971). He made his debut as an independent cameraman in Satyadev Dubey’s Marathi films. Shantata!Cote Chal Ahe (1973), before forming a rich and creative partnership with an up-and-coming director called Shyam Benegal on a number of films that changed the landscape of Indian cinema.

Shashi and Govind crossed paths again when Govind lensed Shyam’s lens Callug (1981) and Junoon (1978), both in which Shashi played a major role. Govind started his career as a director. Acrosh (1980), an intense film with power-packed performances by Om Puri and Naseeruddin Shah. By this time, Shashi had developed a parallel career making what could best be described as arthouse cinema. Although he made his living as a hero in mainstream Hindi cinema, he wanted to focus his efforts on more meaningful films. By the time the IAF proposal reached him, he had already Junoon (1979), Callug (1981) and 36 Chowringy Lane (1981).

Shashi ropes Govind and tells him Villeta, He then recruited poet Dilip Chitre and playwright Sachadev Dubey. Uncle, Nishant and Bumika When Junun. It was Durbei Ji who provided the idea for the Sikh man and his Maharashtrian wife, played by Shashi Kapoor and Rekha. proposed. After doing a string of films as a child artist, Kunal made her debut starring in Esmayeel Shroff. Ahista Ahista (1981). The film made no impact. According to Govind, Shashi did not press his son’s lawsuit during casting. Vijeta. It was a generous offer without any pressure.

Rekha jumped on the parallel cinema bandwagon and delivered a roaring performance. Umrao Jaan (1981) and Callug (1981).When Villeta, She turned in one of the most underrated performances of all time.can not find Villeta It’s on any of her lists, but this one is truly a farce. In this film, she plays Sikh immigrant Nihal of Shashi and her Singh’s Marathi wife Neelima. Nihal is an alcoholic and a chauvinist who defends the one-night stand because it was “Bazar Aulat”. Not only does Neelima gracefully document her protest, she stands up for other women, she says she was just trying to make a living. Rekha builds Neelima’s quiet fortitude brick by brick, scene by scene. Shashi Kapoor has a compelling role as does Nihal Singh. The film begins with a shot of Nihal witnessing the partition massacre. Govind himself witnessed the violence of the Partition, which hurt him and found echoes in his work, which eventually culminated. Tamas (1988). Like Govind, the Partition tragedy left a deep scar in his Nihal psyche, and he still experiences violent nightmares. Shashi is spectacular in that role. Neelima and Nihal are often found poking horns at their son Angad.

Caught in this conflict between men and women is Angad (Kunal Kapoor), a troubled youth. He is not academically inclined and his father’s advice makes him even more furious and confused. A session with his uncle Arvind (Om Puri), who works in the Indian Navy, spurred him toward the Defense Academy. While in the NDA, his meeting with his friends Venkat Raju (Madan Jain), Aslam Khan (Raja Bundela) and Wilson (KK Raina) made him want to become a fighter pilot. increase. But it’s not easy either. A stalwart group named Varghese (Amrish Puri). Under the guidance of his captain, he learns how to fly.

Aerial shots depicting Angad’s flight training were some of the highlights of the film. Until then, most Indian films depicting fighter planes used stock footage or miniature photography. But here Govind Nihalani filmed these sequences himself in the air with the help of his IAF his pilot in real life. He had no sophisticated equipment or cameras. top gun The crew knew. It was a low-budget affair and Shashi Kapoor had to face many challenges to get the funding.But certain shots like Angad soaring above the clouds are priceless and, given the scarcity of resources, more competent than similar sequences top gun It came 4 years later.However Villeta did not share the fate of top gun. The Hindi film was a commercial disaster. As Shashi Kapoor later revealed, the film lost around Rs 400,000. Villeta Not on any of the major streaming platforms. One of his surviving prints is in a pitiful state and retains none of the grandeur of Govind’s spectacular photographs. But looking back Villeta It remains a classic Hindi film about the life of a fighter pilot with realism, tenderness and irony.

part of ( Villeta The origin story is taken from Aseem Chhabra’s brilliant Shashi Kapoor biography. Shashi Kapoor: The Householder, The Star)

Amborish is a National Film Award-winning author, biographer, and film historian.

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