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Randhir Kapoor's 5 Top Performances

By SUBHASH K JHA
February 15, 2022 15:24 IST
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It's a pity that Randhir Kapoor got trapped in the image of a happy-go-lucky version of his father Raj Kapoor.

There was so much more to him than the rumbustious, blustering, bumpkin image that he was stuck with.

A part of the blame for not breaking out of that stereotype must go to the actor himself.

He loved to be perceived as a typical Kapoor: An overweight foodie with a snappy sense of humour, who didn't care for the hit-or-flop cycle of the box office.

But Randhir had the acting chops, and he had the hits.

Subhash K Jha lists his successful films on the actor's birthday on February 15.

 

Kal Aaj Aur Kal, 1971

IMAGE: Prithviraj Kapoor, Raj Kapoor and Randhir Kapoor in Kal Aaj Aur Kal.

This was a family affair. Randhir's grandfather Prithviraj Kapoor and father Raj Kapoor played their real-life roles while his fiancé Babita played his girlfriend.

Kal Aaj Aur Kal was also Randhir's debut as an actor and director, and he was quite promising.

The film still exudes a freshness in its tone. It deals with the generation gap with a certain amount of wisecracking wisdom.

Shankar-Jaikishan created a hit score, and songs like Aap Yahan Aaye Kis Liye and Bhanware Ki Gunjan are hummed to this day.

The film was an average success at the box office.

Interestingly, Mehmood spoofed Prithviraj, Raj and Randhir playing all three roles himself a year later in the Jeetendra-starrer Humjoli.

 

Rampur Ka Lakshman, 1972

IMAGE: Randhir Kapoor, Shatrughan Sinha and Rekha in Rampur Ka Lakshman.

A year after his debut, Randhir featured in Manmohan Desai's potboiler, Rampur Ka Lakshman.

It was a superhit with chartbuster songs composed by R D Burman like em>Rampur Ka Vasi Hoon and Ghum Hai Kissike Pyar Mein.

Randhir had his pal Rekha for company, but the villain Shatrughan Sinha stole the show.

Randhir has done 15 films with Rekha and they remain friends to this day.

 

Hamrahi, 1974

IMAGE: Tanuja and Randhir Kapoor in Hamrahi.

One of the most under-estimated films of Randhir's career. Anand Sagar's Hamrahi was a load of fun and a source of inspiration for Priyadarshan's Hera Pheri.

Known for his comic virtuosity, Randhir got tit for tat from the vivacious Tanuja.

One wonders why these two were not cast together again.

Their repartees sparkled, and why not! The dialogues were written by the eminent Hindi litterateur Kishan Chander.

Later, Kishan Chander also wrote Ram Bharose for Randhir.

 

Jawani Diwani, 1972

IMAGE: Jaya Bachchan and Randhir Kapoor in Jawani Diwani.

Randhir Kapoor shared a close bond with film-maker Ramesh Behl, who cast the actor with Amitabh Bachchan and Jaya Bachchan in Kasme Vade.

It was a sparkling, musical college comedy with R D Burman belting out hit after hit like Yeh Jawani Hai Diwani, Jaan-e-Jaan, Agar Saaz Chheda Taraane Banenge.

A superhit, the same team tried to encore the success in Dil Diwana two years later, but failed.

Randhir worked in many hit films like Haath Ki Safai (1974), Chacha Bhatija (1977) and Rampur Ka Lakshman, besides Jawani Diwani, but was never taken seriously as an actor.

 

Dharam Karam, 1975

IMAGE: Rekha and Randhir Kapoor in Dharam Karam.

Ek din bik jayega maati ke mol, Majrooh Sultanpuri's words reverberate across the universe.

Alas, the song has outlived the film, which was a forgettable mess.

It brought together father Raj Kapoor and son Randhir in a muddled potboiler inspired by Awara.

Raj and Randhir Kapoor appeared in Do Ustad, when Randhir was 12, but they did not play father and son.

 

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SUBHASH K JHA