Rekha`s ‘Khubsoorat’, a tale of love, laughter and free spirit

Must-watch classics: Directed by legendary filmmaker Hrishikesh Mukherjee, the iconic comedy-drama `Khubsoorat,` stars Rekha in one of her most rewarded roles. The film revolves around the Gupta family, led by Nirmala Devi (Dina Pathak), a stern and authoritarian matriarch. Her rigid rules and discipline dominate the household, causing unhappiness among the family members. However, when Manju (Rekha), the fun-loving and rebellious sister of Nirmala Devi’s younger daughter-in-law, enters the picture, she disrupts the household`s harmony but ultimately brings about positive change by teaching the family the importance of love, laughter, and emotional freedom.

The film begins with the introduction of the characters of two families: the Guptas and the Dayals. The Dayals are fun-loving, free-spirited people, while the Gupta family is very particular about what they do and is quite disciplined. Further in the story, Nirmala Devi arranges the marriage of her second son, Chander Gupta (Vijay Sharma), to Anju Dayal(Aradhana), the daughter of a wealthy widower named Ram Dayal (David) and the elder sister of Manju Dayal.

After the wedding, Manju goes to visit her sister and realizes that the family is not happy because they can’t do what they like due to Nirmala’s rules and restrictions. Manju`s lively and carefree nature clashes with Nirmala`s strictness, but she quickly befriends other family members. Once, when Nirmala goes out, Manju arranges a play to bring some joy to the Guptas, but as Nirmala catches her, things go haywire.

In between all this, Manju and Inder (Nirmala’s younger son- played by Rakesh Roshan) fall in love too. As Nirmala behaves rudely with Manju after she is caught, Nirmala’s husband, Dwaraka Prasad (Ashok Kumar), gets angry, which leads to a heart attack. Since the other family members, except Nirmala and Manju, were out of town, Manju takes care of Dwaraka Prasad. Seeing Manju’s care for her husband, Nirmala melts, and this leads to a change of heart for Nirmala, who stops Manju from leaving and gets her married to Inder.

This film is a real rollercoaster of emotions and a classic example of why `90s kids still can`t get over the films they watched in their childhood. It`s what we call a full package deal. The movie, with its rib-tickling humour, manages to make you emotional when something bad happens. The romance between Manju and Indar (Nirmala’s younger son, played by Rakesh Roshan), reminds you of the time when you fell for your partner and will give you butterflies.

The film’s soundtrack is what made the whole watching experience more fun. This film has given us some of the most beloved songs, including `Sun Sun Sun Didi,` `Piya Bawri, Piya Bawri,` and `Kayda Kayda.` `Sun Sun Sun Didi` is still remembered as a classic, and people love to play it during weddings.

The movie puts forth a very basic idea: the importance of celebrating the life we live. However, it is the way this idea is delivered that makes this film iconic. The movie is known for its light-hearted humour and memorable performances. The character of Manju brings a sense of familiarity with which people can still relate, even after almost four decades.

‘Khubsoorat’ is a timeless gem of Indian cinema and continues to be celebrated for its endearing characters and delightful storytelling. It`s a movie that has left a lasting impact on Bollywood and is indeed a nostalgic piece for fans of classic Hindi cinema.

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