It is not just the language of filmmaking that changed with Dil Chahta Hai. It probably brought changes in dreams and aspirations of an entire generation of guys.
Yes! There is something about Dil Chahta Hai. Released close to 12 years ago – July 24, 2001 to be precise – this film probably ranks among the top favourites of any guy who was aged anywhere between 15-25 during it’s relelase. Probably many more than that. Maybe it’s a guy thing… Or maybe it’s universal. Girls liked it too afterall.
I remember DCH for more than one reason. I had watched it ‘first day first show’ at Anuradha Cinema is Guwahati. The mad rush at single screens were far from over, and so were gang wars at the box office window. I witnessed one of those and almost swore never to watch a film on it’s first day ever again. That of course is another story, for another day.
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The film came in when I had just got into college. The vibrance of youth was setting in and friendship was making a strong impact in life. A tale of three friends was refreshing. Plus, love was also just making its presence felt in life. You know the age!
‘Ya toh dosti gehri hai, ya photo 3D hai!’
DCH is entertaining and fresh. Even today. As one of my close friends and a rather observant journalist pointed out to me, “DCH was new. It was a change from what we were used to watching. It was a tale of friendship, like never told before. And it had superb characters.” My friend happens to be a girl. I could not agree more with her. But she and I differed on one point. While she did admit the film was wonderfully scripted, for me they were much more. I could see myself in the film.
When I watched DCH for the first time I came out of the theaters trying to figure which characters was closest to me. I settled for Akaash (Aamir Khan). He was the coolest for sure!
‘Yeh Akaash ka jadu hai Uncle Sam, kabhi fail nahi hua’.
As I gradutated from first year in college to third year, I moved on to believe I was probably more like Sameer (Saif Ali Khan). Someone who was lost, but still well on his way. A person so interesting, almost comical!
‘magr main, suno toh…’
‘Cake khane ke liye hum kahi bhi pohoch sakte hai!’
This is what is so interesting about life. The journey it takes you through, adding facets to your personality. By the time I was out of college, I had figured… I could fairly indentify with Sid (Akshaye Khanna).
It took me just around five years to understand the magic of DCH! All three characters were so much a part of our lives… You certainly could have not grown up through the 90s or early 2000s without somewhere being like at least one of them. If not one of them, you would have definitely felt like one of their close friends. And of course, you would wished for such friends in life. You would dream of that Goa trip…
‘Masti mein rahein dooba… Dil chahta hai’
And that’s exactly what filmmakers miss when they attempt to make films involving friends. Barring a couple like Zindage Milegi Na Dobara and Rock On (Ironically from the same producers as DCH) there are hardly any films which gets characters so right!
Why I talk about these films? Not quite random. It is the spate of films that have released of late; films that have attempted to paint friendship on screen. They have left me wondering why do I end up left disappointed. Not the fault of these filmmakers, my standards were unfairly raised by a certain Farhan Akhtar who directed DCH.
Dil Chahta Hai… Much more!
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