A song for each picture # 2

Spent some time this past weekend driving to and around a couple cities neighboring Los Angeles. Probably could not tell exactly where I was (seriously) given my lack of familiarity with the region, but the beautiful landscapes could keep anyone entertained. There were green hills and mountains (some snow-capped). There was a train winding through a couple of them, which reminded me of this song from Parineeta (2005). There was even a trademark Islamorada Fish Company (noted in this post)!

And then I ended up on a roadway that reminded me of the very first scene in Tashan (2008 -- here is my review). The narrow roadway, coupled with 'rait' (meaning 'sand', pronounced with the 't' as in 'taara') on either side, and mountains in the distance, were similar to the setting of that scene. (Speaking of Tashan, here is an excellent essay by Filmi Girl, titled Tashan, Om Shanti Om, and 70s Nostalgia.)

I even went off-road for a bit (and needed a car wash like never before that evening), which is when I took the picture below. Sitting in the middle of nowhere for who knows how long was this vehicle. So the question is: Which Bollywood song(s) does this picture remind you of and why?

PS: Excuse the picture quality; did not have my 'real' camera and had to rely on the phone :)

Addendum 6/12:

Here are the top three songs noted. Thank you for your comments!

1. Yun Hi Chala Chal from Swades (2004)
This was indeed the song that I was thinking of. It had the RV...

...and the terrain:

2. Dil Dance Maare from Tashan (2008)
Mentioned Tashan in the post, and this song is set in a similar setting:

3. Banjar Hai from Saathiyaa (2002)
Saathiya will always be remembered for its excellent music. This song (watch it here) has more than a visual connection (see comments):

Honorable Mention
Had I rotated to 9 O'Clock from the spot I took the picture, I would likely see this:

And this, ladies and gentlemen, is Champaner, the site of all the wonderful songs from Lagaan (2001)!


Anonymous said...

The obvious one that springs to mind is from Swades: "Yun Hi Chala Chala"


Filmi Girl said...

Thanks for the link to my essay!

Hmm... as for the picture, it reminds me of "Dil Dance Maare" from Tashan and a song I can't remember the title of from Swades - with Shahrukh driving that huge camper van!

Anonymous said...

The first song that I thought of when I saw this picture was ‘Mera Yaar Mila De’ from Saathiya (2002). During this song, Vivek Oberoi travels to various parts of India, searching for Rani Mukerji. One of the landscapes depicted is a coastal desert-like region (I guess kind of like LA). More so than the song’s picturization, it was the lyrics that helped me make the connection.

Banjar hai, sab banjar hai
Hum doondne jab firdaus chale
Teri khoj talaash mein dekh piya hum kitne kaale kos chale
Banjar hai, sab banjar hai

The key word here is ‘banjar’ which refers to a barren wasteland (like the one in the picture), where nothing grows nor can ever grow. Also the abandoned recreational vehicle emphasizes the plight of the desperate lover in search of his beloved. Just as the RV is dilapidated, so is the heart battered in agony and longing.

In sharp contrast to ’banjar’ (wasteland) is ‘firdaus’ (garden). Firdaus comes from ‘Jannat ul-Firdaus’, the highest level of heaven, and the most beautiful of the gardens of paradise, closest to God. While the lover is expressing his suffering, he still clings to hope in finding his beloved, crying out to her to meet him after their separation. This is similar to how Muslims believe that death is not the final end, that there is hope in the Akhirah (the afterlife in Islam). I interpret ’banjar’ as representing suffering/death while ’firdaus’ conveys pleasure/heaven, but it seems that I have digressed from the original question… sorry!

Anonymous said...

The RV also reminded me of the 'ABCD' song from Hum Saath Saath Hain (1999). The highlight of that song, and I guess the film as a whole, was seeing so many of Bollywood's top stars together on screen.

theBollywoodFan said...

Memsaab: I was thinking of exactly the same song as I took the picture! I've expressed my love for it a couple of times, most recently in this post (but you knew that already). For a moment, I even felt like jumping into the vehicle, but I must admit I feared it might be inhabited, if only by rattlesnakes :) What a waste! Speaking of the film, I had a Swades moment at work today. We were in a brain-storming session, and a map of Asia was on one of the slides, with India highlighted. So my Bollywood-crazed brain wandered and quietly hummed 'Yeh Jo Des Hai Tera', lol. What's more, I was even wearing a lanyard with my badge, over a tie! :)

Filmi Girl: Right on! See my note to Memsaab above. The setting *is* similar to that of 'Dil Dance Maare' from Tashan.

Salek: That's a great thought process! 'Banjar Hai' is an excellent song. Agree with about everything you say, and the analogy to the battered heart is very well done. And I have not seen Hum Saath Saath Hain, should check it out soon.

Thank you all for your thoughts! Anyone have any more to add?

Anonymous said...

There's also 'Yeh Dil Deewana' from Pardes (1997). In the beginning of the song, Shah Rukh Khan is driving through a landscape very similar to the one in your picture.

I think Pardes was also the first Bollywood movie to have been filmed in Los Angeles and Las Vegas.

theBollywoodFan said...

Salek: Pardes was an excellent film, and I do believe it was the first to be shot here. You're right about that landscape! Good one, thanks!