The Charisma of Rajesh Khanna

The Charisma of Rajesh Khanna

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“Super Star Rajesh Khanna”

Since: Jul 10

Secunderabad

#1 Oct 30, 2012
The Charisma of Rajesh Khanna

It's common knowledge that Rajesh Khanna, the quintessential romantic hero of Bollywood, was nothing short of a phenomenon. The following essay--extracted from The Best of Quest, edited by Laeeq Futehally, Achal Prabhala and Arshia Sattar, and published by Tranquebar Press-- throws light upon his star power, his universal appeal and his meteoric rise to the top.

It is rumoured that his disarming smile costs Rs. 1.4 million. Young women devour him with hungry eyes in the afternoon darkness of cinema halls. Mothers witness his filmic deaths with helpless pangs of frustrated protectiveness. Young adult males project themselves into his limelit presence on the screen and later yearn to recreate themselves in his image. Millions of Indians queue up for long hours to see him break into his smile, get drunk, become furious, whisper love-words or burst forth into a husky, vibrant played-back song. If there is one person in India today who surpasses the Prime Minister's charisma, he is Rajesh Khanna. The multimillion rupee Hindi film industry which prolifically produces stereotyped dreams unanimously regards him as the only authentic super-star it has so far produced. He is what makes a sure-fire box-office hit. Even films with all the essential ingredients for making a sure flop have run for weeks just because he starred in them. His success is so phenomenal that it challenges anyone who pretends to understand mass behaviour.

He is of medium height and build. He has mannerisms of his own which show through whatever character he plays - or perhaps that is unfair to him. His producers and directors want him to play no other character but his own unique self. He has a rare plasticity: that which makes a natural actor, something which James Dean had impressed upon movie-addicts during his meteoric Hollywood career. For he gives the sense that he lives his assumed role, however crudely it is scripted and directed. Yet he will not get an Ella Kazan or a George Stevens to direct him. And his hurt-youth image, which is a factor in his success, will gradually age.

The best script and director he got so far was in the film Anand, directed by Hrishikesh Mukherjee who is one of the better directors in the world of commercial Hindi cinema. His worst role was the one in Haathi Mere Saathi in which he plays a sort of elephant-boy and in which one of the three corners of the conventional love triangle is occupied, of all animals, by elephants.

Curiously, Rajesh Khanna is considered a hero worth killing - which is amazing since in Hindi films it is a taboo to kill the hero. Curiously too, he has to die of cancer. He died of cancer in Safar and again in Anand. In Safar he is the leukaemic lover of a would-be doctor. In Anand, he is a cancer patient who spends his limited spell of life to make people around him happy. In Andaz he dies in a motor-bike accident for a change. Is it, one wonders, the expression of a mass death-wish? Some fifteen years ago, Dilip Kumar, the matinee idol then, specialized in dying as a hero. However, Dilip Kumar's screen deaths brought no shock to the audience since he moved and spoke, from the start, as if he were his own pall-bearer. Rajesh's screen deaths have some novelty: he is a warm, ebullient, vivacious, blithe young man. Even if he is destined to die, it seems unfair and too early. One has seen teenage girls sob witnessing him die. Or heaving unmistakably erotic sighs when he sings a love song (with the inimitable Kishore Kumar play-back singing for him). For the first time in the history of the commercial Hindi cinema a single person has acquired such following.

What has Rajesh Khanna got that others haven't? He does have acting talent. But there are others who are much better. He is good-looking. But that is neither here nor there. He is certainly not very handsome. What is it then?

Contdd....
VIPIN

Noida, India

#2 Oct 30, 2012
Dear V.Manohar Ji/ rbalkssmi ji

You have described his characteristics in very correct way and everybody try to analyse him but what is behind the craze of him is still mystery or I can say no explanation we have ?

This is only uniqueness of him what makes him different from others.
Rasik Patel

London, UK

#3 Oct 30, 2012
He created a craze due to his style.
He had Style - the style of a superstar.

Goggles
Scarf
Muffler
Belts
Facial Character
this set him aside in his time and created a craze for him and his style - it was like what will he do next?????
VIPIN

Noida, India

#5 Oct 30, 2012
Dear Rasik You are absolutely 100 % right. Unhe aur unka vo unique style dekhne ki tammann bar bar karti haia.

His very unique style is like in ANANAD's song Zindgi kaisi haia paheli haye" He put the sleepers in his hands and walking at the edge of sea.

What the style and what the sense of humour he has.

There are so many styles which shows his style with mannerism which makes him different from other stars.
micky

Gandhinagar, India

#6 Oct 31, 2012
COPY/PASTE

Situated next to Girgaum’s century-old church of St Francis Xavier is St Sebastian Goan High School. On Wednesday, it seemed like a regular day at the 87-year-old school, except that it wasn’t.

Greta Parretta, the headmistress of the primary section, had interacted with a slew of mediapersons in just two hours.“I joined in 1977 and rarely saw the school witness such a frenzy. Then again, it’s not every day that you get to speak about a superstar alumnus.” The superstar she’s alluding to is Rajesh Khanna, who died on Wednesday.

As soon as Parretta heard the news, she asked everyone in the school to observe a two-minute silence.

For Kashinath Gaikwad, a senior peon who has been working in the school for 28 years, said:“By the time I joined the school, Khanna was already a star. But my uncle was a peon during his school days and told me that Khannaji was a sincere and well-mannered student.”

Anil Baburao Chari, who lives right next to the school, remembers the days when Jeetendra and Rajesh Khanna would come to school in their cars — a Plymouth and MG.“They would run out of school and buy ice cream, golas and chikis from vendors outside my house.”

Just a few buildings down the road is Saraswati Niwas where the veteran actor was born and brought up. The landlady Varsha Joshi, whose grandfather built the structure, reveals that Khanna was not money-minded.“My father interacted a lot more with him. By the time I grew up, the actor had moved out but he always met me warmly. He trusted us and never interfered with our role as the caretaker,” she said.
VIPIN

Noida, India

#7 Oct 31, 2012
Dear Micky great effort and very good information you have provided as I have quoted the topic"RK WAS NOT MONEY MINDED"

Gadhon ke liye story bhi likh di haia.

RK = SMART
AB = OVER SMART

RK's fans = SMART
ab'S FANS = OVER SMART
zabir saeed

Islamabad, Pakistan

#8 Nov 10, 2012
Great superstar ever.....
rajeshkhannafan

Singapore, Singapore

#9 Nov 10, 2012
Hos voice and his drawl....
kumar14

UK

#10 Nov 15, 2012
Yes vipinji,u r right.
In Anand movie,the way he keeps the slipper in his hands and walks along the sea,singing a song of Zindagi-it looks so real and natural!!
Wow!!Rajesh khanna-no one can touch His heights.
The charisma of Rajesh Khanna-no one can even dream of!!
MEE12

Bromley, UK

#11 Nov 15, 2012
Rasik Patel wrote:
He created a craze due to his style.
He had Style - the style of a superstar.
Goggles
Scarf
Muffler
Belts
Facial Character
this set him aside in his time and created a craze for him and his style - it was like what will he do next?????
Rasik ji,

Yes very similar style to Dev Anand.
.
micky

Gandhinagar, India

#12 Nov 15, 2012
as far as suceess is concerned devanand is nothing compared to great kakaji. he has a stule & craze both.
MEE12

Manchester, UK

#13 Nov 16, 2012
micky wrote:
as far as suceess is concerned devanand is nothing compared to great kakaji. he has a stule & craze both.
but for style it was inspired from Dev Anand.
.
micky

Gandhinagar, India

#14 Nov 16, 2012
no sorry angrez u are biggest liar mee12
micky

Gandhinagar, India

#15 Nov 16, 2012
ab is angrez ko koi sach samjayo. e kitna jhut bolta rahenga. tired of this useless angrez mee12.
micky

Gandhinagar, India

#16 Nov 16, 2012
amitabh injured while visiting sena supremo

Why cannot this Big B guy take a break. He wants a piece of every news, meddling in all the affairs as if he is the Home Minister of India. He acts like a 3yr old sometimes

He himself is from UP. But couldn't utter a word when the Shiv Sena thugs were seen thrashing the "Bhaiyyas". He is a spineless hypocrite
Abhijit

Varanasi, India

#17 Nov 16, 2012
MEE12 wrote:
<quoted text>but for style it was inspired from Dev Anand.
.
There are vast and minute difference in the style of both. Moreover, Dev Anand never looked a complete character; Kaka always..basic difference in characterization of versatile characters.
Abhijit

Varanasi, India

#18 Nov 16, 2012
micky wrote:
amitabh injured while visiting sena supremo
Why cannot this Big B guy take a break. He wants a piece of every news, meddling in all the affairs as if he is the Home Minister of India. He acts like a 3yr old sometimes
He himself is from UP. But couldn't utter a word when the Shiv Sena thugs were seen thrashing the "Bhaiyyas". He is a spineless hypocrite
This beggar AB is just a buttering master of all powerful politicians for his own sake to earn bred and butter.
Abhijit

Varanasi, India

#19 Nov 16, 2012
MEE12 wrote:
<quoted text>Rasik ji,
Yes very similar style to Dev Anand.
.
Not similar; there were distinct and minute difference. Moreover, Dev Anand was surrounded with western style all around; whereas Kaka characterised vast range of characters with depth touches and shades with unique manner. No comparison.
micky

Gandhinagar, India

#20 Nov 16, 2012
well said abhijitji
VIPIN

Noida, India

#21 Nov 17, 2012
Abhijit wrote:
<quoted text>
Not similar; there were distinct and minute difference. Moreover, Dev Anand was surrounded with western style all around; whereas Kaka characterised vast range of characters with depth touches and shades with unique manner. No comparison.
Dear Abhijit Aapne bilkul sahi jwab diya.

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