Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Shaking booty in Bollywood

Dancing is one of the major components in Bollywood films. Whether it is the awkward movements of Sunny Deol or the fluidity of Hritik Roshan, dance continues to play an important part of the Bollywood culture. No doubt a brilliantly choreographed song can make all the difference between the success and failure of the film.

Back in the day of black and white cinema, dancing around trees playing peek-a-boo was inevitable. Not forgetting heroes and heroines being drenched in the rain as they sang and danced sensuously to each other in secluded streets. But times have changed and today good dancing means being able to gyrate your hips and yet be graceful at the same time.

Here, I present the best, worst and most improved dancers in Tinsel Town.

When we think of dreadful Bollywood dancers, a classic example is easily the Deol family! Although Dharmendra was popular in the 70s, he was also known for his clumsy dance sequences. However he still remained one of the most respected actors in the industry. His older son, Sunny Deol continued his father’s legacy of bad dancing in the 80s, but still managed to remain one of the best action heroes. Probably one of his most embarrassing dances were in Jeet (1996) alongside Karisma Kapoor. Luckily, his younger brother, Bobby Deol proved that he doesn’t have two left feet! Sure, he may not be a Hrithik Roshan, but at least he doesn’t carry the reputation of his father and big brother!

During the 90s, actors like Akshay Kumar and Sunil Shetty were in the limelight. Although Shetty got a lot of criticism for his dancing, he managed to hold his fort throughout the decade. Today his career is soaring and he is even running his own production house.

The 90s also saw the rise of stars like Hrithik Roshan (Kaho Na…Pyar Hai) and Abishek Bachan (Refugee) – who both debuted in the same year. Roshan received immediate recognition after his solo performance in Ek Pal Ka Jeena, while Bachan’s dancing was described as ‘awkward’ and ‘gawky’. But he has definitely proven that a little practice makes perfect, having some of the biggest hits being picturized on him (Dus bahane, Kajra re and Nach Baliye).

Other stars of this generation include sisters, Karisma and Kareena Kapoor who have both been commended for their dance moves. Karisma gave some of her best performances in Dil To Pagal Hai, opposite Shah Rukh Khan and Madhuri Dixit. One of Kareena’s famous dances are with Hrithik Roshan – especially You are my Sonia in Khabi Khushi Khabi Gham. Shilpa Shetty has also been noted for setting the screen ablaze with her fiery dance sequences, which can be seen in Jung opposite Sanjay Dutt.

Madhuri Dixit and Aishwariya Rai, both equally talented actresses, are also well-accomplished dancers. Dixit has made numerous hits with outstanding dance performances, including the awesome Kay Sera Sera in Pukar with elastic-man, Prabhudeva while Rai has definitely made her mark in the industry over the past few years. Her snaky movements in Bunty aur Babli’s Kajra Re is one of the factors of the film becoming a hit. The two Bollywood queens shared the screen in Devdas, with their mind-blowing movements in Dola Re Dol.

King of Bollywood, Shah Rukh Khan almost needs no mention. He never fails to impress. He can be sexy and seductive or simply cute and charming. Some of his memorable dances are in Dil To Pagal Hai, Khabi Khushi Khabi Gham and more recently in Kaal.

Although they have the entire female population going ga-ga over them, Arjun Rampal and John Abraham are yet to prove their dancing talents to us. Despite the fact t

hat he is one of the biggest stars in Bollywood, Salman Khan’s dancing does not impress. If you look carefully, dancing looks like an effort for him and even resembles aerobics!

Bollywood stars also get to prove whether their on-screen performances are as energetic off-screen with stage performances. Many stars are known for their unforgettable stage shows. Some stars that blew my mind away with their performances on stage are the likes of Hrithik Roshan, Shah Rukh Khan, Akshay Kumar, Madhuri Dixit, Rani Mukherjee and Lara Dutta.


Beth Loves Bollywood said...

A fun overview of filmi footwork! I'd never noticed that Hrithik and Abhishek both debuted (as grownups, anyway) in 2000. Interesting! And I'll be intrigiued as to whether any of your opinions on various stars' dancing abilities will set off any arguments - such things often do!

Sheetal said...

So would I, Beth! In fact...I'd especially like to know what the readers of Beth Loves Bollywood think of it ;)

Maja said...

Hi Sheetal,
good post! As much as I love Abhishek, I have to agree that he is a clumsy dancer, but to me, that only makes him more endearing, because I'm a terrible dancer too (actually, compared to me, Abhi would look like Hrithik!). Well, I thought he was great in all the dances in B&B, but after seeing the Making of Where's the Party Tonight clips, I wondered if Karan will manage to make him look presentable in the movie ... which he did, with lots of quick cuts :)

Sheetal said...

Hi maja,

Yes - Bachan Jnr is quite endearing, isn't he?! I can't wait to see him in "Where's the Party Tonight" - I am yet to see KANK!

Aswin said...

I really enjoyed this! And would love to see a post on dancers who are stars in their own right, but aren't lead actors. Helen, for instance.

Sheetal said...

Hi Aswin,

Do you mean something like 'item babes'? Helen, as you said...and maybe also Malaika Arora? That's already on my list for an upcoming feature story. They are becoming increasingly popular in Hindi cinema, arn't they?

Thanks for visiting...hope to see you again soon :)

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PS: Sheetal, the new template looks cool! :)

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Hi Velu,

Madhuri will always be a classic, won't she?! I must agree with you on that one.

I'm glad you like my blogs new look!
..hope you're doing well, chat to you soon :)

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