Shooting film songs

Picture the song: ‘Galti Se Mistake’ proves that Ranbir Kapoor can never put a wrong foot forward

Effortlessness marks the energetic dance number from ‘Jagga Jasoos’.

It will be interesting to see what Ranbir Kapoor does with his magical feet when he plays the actor Sanjay Dutt in Rajkumar Hirani’s biopic Sanju. Dutt is one of Hindi cinema’s most ungainly dancers, supreme in his inability to co-ordinate the bulk above the waist with the limbs below. Kapoor, on the other hand, is one of the most graceful movers in the movies, with a sense of timing as sharp as that of his father, Rishi Kapoor, and the talent to communicate the sheer joy of throwing his body about.

The Sanju teaser proves that Kapoor has his Dutt imitation down pat. If the movie has songs, will Kapoor dial down his enviable terpsichorean abilities too?

Although Kapoor did plenty of dancing in his first movie, Saawariya (2007), his choice of roles – brooding lovers, lost boy-men, truth seekers – has provided relatively few opportunities to dance. In Bachna Ae Haseeno (2007), which is named after a hit song featuring Rishi Kapoor, the opening credits feature a remixed version of the 1970s hit. In Lut Gaye Besharam from Besharam (2013), Ranbir Kapoor neatly parodies the crotch-thrusting and exaggerated pelvic thrusts that Hindi movie heroes are supposed to perform in public to impress women. Matargashti from Tamasha (2015) indicates that Kapoor can improvise (or pretend to), and co-star Deepika Padukone has a hard time keeping up.

The best platform for Kapoor to shake a leg has been the blockbuster Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani (2013), which includes the let-it-all-hang-out Holi number Balam Pichkari and a superb duet with Madhuri Dixit. The club song Budtameez Dil has some of the most energetic jiving seen in the movies in years, with Kapoor channeling his inner Shammi Kapoor in a fitting suit and a pin-striped tie.

In Anurag Basu’s Jagga Jasoos (2017), Kapoor proves that he can hold the screen even when goofing around as an adolescent in a boarding school uniform. Basu’s colourful but unwieldy Tintin-style adventure is packed with songs, including the infectious Galti Se Mistake, which pops up in the movie, like many other moments, without needing to. The costumes are identical – olive green shorts, white t-shirt, sleeveless green sweater, and the background dancers numerous, but the eyes stay rivetted on Kapoor throughout.

Vijay Ganguly’s inventive choreography reflects both the madcap anything-goes quality of the situation (a night-time birthday celebration on campus) and the spirit of Amitabh Bhattacharya’s lyrics, which recommend that you are young and carefree only once.

Jagga Jasoos was a tortured production, released after months of delay and eventually underperforming at the box office. Among the bits that will survive in memory is the song in which Kapoor cut a birthday cake on somebody’s raised bottom, imitated a bicycle, and pulled faces and wiggled his hips like a six-year-old. Kapoor’s ability to conceal the effort behind the effortlessness will be in demand in Sanju, a movie about an actor unbound in his personal life and severely limited in the acting and dance departments on the screen.

Play
Galti Se Mistake, Jagga Jasoos (2017).
Support our journalism by subscribing to Scroll+ here. We welcome your comments at letters@scroll.in.
Sponsored Content BY 

Decoding the symbolic threads and badges of one of India’s oldest cavalry units

The untold story of The President’s Bodyguard.

The national emblem of India; an open parachute and crossed lances – this triad of symbols representing the nation, excellence in training and valor respectively are held together by an elite title in the Indian army – The President’s Bodyguard (PBG).

The PBG badge is worn by one of the oldest cavalry units in the India army. In 1773, Governor Warren Hastings, former Governor General of India, handpicked 50 troopers. Before independence, this unit was referred to by many titles including Troops of Horse Guards and Governor General’s Body Guards (GGBG). In 1950, the unit was named The President’s Bodyguard and can be seen embroidered in the curved maroon shoulder titles on their current uniforms.

The President’s Bodyguard’s uniform adorns itself with proud colours and symbols of its 245 year-old-legacy. Dating back to 1980, the ceremonial uniform consists of a bright red long coat with gold girdles and white breeches, a blue and gold ceremonial turban with a distinctive fan and Napoleon Boots with spurs. Each member of the mounted unit carries a special 3-meter-long bamboo cavalry lance, decorated by a red and white pennant. A sheathed cavalry sabre is carried in in the side of the saddle of each trooper.

While common perception is that the PBG mainly have ceremonial duties such as that of being the President’s escort during Republic Day parade, the fact is that the members of the PBG are highly trained. Handpicked by the President’s Secretariat from mainstream armored regiments, the unit assigns a task force regularly for Siachen and UN peace keeping operations. Moreover, the cavalry members are trained combat parachutists – thus decorating the PBG uniform with a scarlet Para Wings badge that signifies that these troopers are a part of the airborne battalion of the India Army.

Since their foundation, the President’s Guard has won many battle honors. In 1811, they won their first battle honor ‘Java’. In 1824, they sailed over Kalla Pani for the first Burmese War and earned the second battle honour ‘Ava’. The battle of Maharajapore in 1843 won them their third battle honor. Consequently, the PBG fought in the main battles of the First Sikh War and earned four battle honours. Post-independence, the PBG served the country in the 1962 Indo-China war and the 1965 Indo-Pak war.

The PBG, one of the senior most regiments of the Indian Army, is a unique unit. While the uniform is befitting of its traditional and ceremonial role, the badges that augment those threads, tell the story of its impressive history and victories.

How have they managed to maintain their customs for more than 2 centuries? A National Geographic exclusive captures the PBG’s untold story. The documentary series showcases the discipline that goes into making the ceremonial protectors of the supreme commander of the Indian Armed Forces.

Play

The National Geographic exclusive is a landmark in television and is being celebrated by the #untoldstory contest. The contest will give 5 lucky winners an exclusive pass to the pre-screening of the documentary with the Hon’ble President of India at the Rashtrapati Bhavan. You can also nominate someone you think deserves to be a part of the screening. Follow #UntoldStory on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to participate.

This article was produced by Scroll marketing team on behalf of National Geographic and not by the Scroll editorial team.