Memorable performances of Mehmood

Mehmood Ali was most probably the best comedy actor in Hindi films of all time, starting off as a child actor in the 1940’s, his illustrious career spanned 6 decades. Possessing phenomenal comic timing, ability to make a plethora of ridiculous facial expressions, being adept at innovating, particularly in physical comedy and being an unbelievably good mimic, Mahmud was a major star and a crowd puller in his prime.

He commanded equal if not higher fee than most of the stars of his time and often stole the limelight from them. Here’s a look at just 5 of his several memorable performances :

1) Andaz Apna Apna : Final appearance of the legendary comedian was in this 1994 cult classic film. Here Mehmood portraits small role that of Johnny,
a fraud who swindles Prem(Salman Khan) off his money by promising to get him casted in a Subhash Ghai movie opposite Madhuri Dixit. Johnny’s character is inspired by Mahmood’s character named Atma in ‘Pyar Kiye Ja’ as he heads the bogus ‘Wah Wah production studio’.

2) Pyar Kiye Ja : Mehmood portrayed the character of Atma, the completely good for nothing son of Seth Ram Lal who is obsessed with film making and aspires to make horror dramas. One of the funniest scene shows Atma explaining a horror sequence to his father Ram Lal (portrayed by character actor and comedian Om Prakash), the scene showcases Mehmood’s incredible talent as he compensates for the lack of special effects and sound effects by mimicking the wind, a closing door, a witch, a frog and a dog.

3) Humjoli: The film has Mahmood in triple role where he spoofs the movie ‘Kal Aaj Aur KalKal’ which featured three generations of the Kapoor family Mehmood mimics Prithviraj Kapoor, Raj Kapoor and Randhir Kapoor in this film. Only someone of the talent of Mehmood could have pulled it off and again only someone of the stature of Mahmood could have made fun of the influential and respected Kapoor family. Humjoli is a great advertisement for the man’s ability to mimic
others and innovate.

4) Padosan: All time comedy classic has a brilliant star cast including Sunil Dutt, Sairo Bano, Kishore Kumar, Om Prakash and Mehmood. Mahmood portrays the comic yet sly master Pillai who is a music teacher to the heroine Bindu, portrayed excellently by Saira Bano. Master Pillai is always trying to seduce Bindu and even pays goons to beat up his rival Bhola(Sunil Dutt). Though in the end master Pillai is conscientious enough to himself ask Bindu to marry Bhola.

5) Gumnaam : Mehmood created another immortal and ever popular character of a Hyderabadi cook cum man servant. Gumnam is a very well scripted suspense thriller though Mahmood with his powerful performance stole the show and made the film appear more like a comedy film solely due to the weight of his performance.

His Hyderabadi character was so popular that he had to re-enact the same character in a song ‘Mehbooba Mehbooba Bana Do Mujhe Dulha’ for the movie Sadhu Aur Shaitan.
Junior Mehmood also re-enacted the song ‘Hum Kaale Hai To Kya Hua Dilwale Hain’ in the film Brahmachari. They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flatter, even megastar Amitabh Bachchan aped Mehmood’s Hyderabadi character from the movie Gumnaam in a song ‘taane Din tandana’
in his 1982 film Desh Premi.

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Indomitableindia.com Bureau

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