Asha Parekh – the spontaneous actress of 60s.
Asha Parekh is considered as one of the most dynamic stars of the 60s who had acted with probably all the leading actors of that age. She started her career with Shammi Kapoor in the film Dil Deke Dekho in 1959. Her choreographic skills in addition to successful music composed by Usha Khanna and songs like “dil deke dekho” contributed to the success of the film.
In the 60s she had mostly acted in Nasir Hussain’s films. The romantic stories which were picturised on colourful locations had attracted the film lovers and most of the films celebrated silver jubilees. She had acted opposite Joy Mukherjee in films like Love In Tokyo, 1966, Phir Wohi Dil Laya Hoon, 1963, Ziddi, 1964. Songs like “raton ka sama”, “naznee bara rangeen hai wada tera”, “le gayi dil guriya japan ki” are remembered specifically her choreographic skills.
She also had made major contribution in Shammi Kapoor’s films like Jawan Mohabbat, Pagla Kahin Ka, Teesri Manzil. She had complimented Shammi Kapoor in the rock and roll numbers like “aja aja mai hoon pyar tera”. She had provided passionate lips in the songs “tum mujhe yu bhula nahi paoge” composed by Shankar Jaikishan.
Her performance in the black and white films is worth mentioning, including films like Gharana, opposite Rajender Kumar, Jab Pyar Kisi Se Hota Hai, opposite Dev Anand. In Gharana, she showed her dancing skills in songs like “husnwale tera jawab nahi”, “jab se tumhe dekha hai”, etc. In Jab Pyar Kisi Se Hota Hai, all the compositions of Shankar Jaikishan were outstanding, and songs like “yeh ankhe uf yumma”, “sau saal pehle”, “ jiya ho” etc. have not lost their appeal even today. Rafi and Lata’s performance is bolstered by strong lyrics written by Hasrat Jaipuri and Shailendra.
Asha Parekh became an icon in the lat 60s and contributed in every alternate film. Her splendid performance in films like Upkaar, opposite Manoj Kumar, Chirag opposite Sunil Dutt, had been instrumental in reaching the stories of the films to millions of film lovers. the roles were also diverse and Asha Parekh had modified her acting style according to the requirement of the film. Her acting in the film Meri Surat Teri Ankhe is worth mentioning. Ashok Kumar played the role of an ugly singer whose deformed face prevented him from presenting himself before the public, but he was blessed with melodious voice and the songs of Manna Dey like “pucho na kaise”, and Rafi like “tere bin sune” had been immortal along with majestic composition of the songs by SD Burman. Asha Parekh was well remembered for her performance in the film.
Her performance opposite Rajesh Khanna in films like Kati Patang, Jeetender in films like Karwa, Biswajeet in films like Mere Sanam, Raj Kumar in Bulandi, shows that she became indispensable for the producers in that age. Her lips in most of the songs of Lata and Asha over 20 years had enchanted the music lovers, some of the examples being “teri ankho ke siva duniya me rakha kya hai”, “kitna pyara wada”, “o jane ja”, etc. If Meena Kumari is remembered for her tragic performances, Madhubala is remembered for her over all beauty, Asha Parekh is known for her immense dancing skills and depth of performances and spontaneous performer. These days she even gives tips to modern dancers in TV programs like Boogie Woogie. Her films should be preserved for immense filmic value.