January 4th, 2010

Maula Jatt (1979)

Maula Jatt (1979)

Maula Jatt (1979)

There is no need to go into the story, a gandasa, a howling musical note, fits of staccato laughter and the dialogue are the only things you need to savour the very essence of Maula Jatt. Memorably scripted by Nasir Adib, and directed with a contagiously maddening, no-holds-barred approach by Yunus Malik, Maula Jatt was made in 1979, and then never forgotten. What you do need to know is that ultimately, Maula Jatt is all about how there is no Yin without the Yang, the eternal struggle between good and evil.

Sultan Rahi as Maula Jatt is the good. Literally the mama’s boy – infamously appearing out of nowhere when his mother, at the top of her lungs, shouts his name, Maula likes to growl, scowl and yell maniacally and when the time comes – which it does, in abundance- Maula likes to shed a lot of blood and enjoys ripped off limbs flying in the air and bits of human intestines dangling from his gandasa, all in the name of honour, justice and the Punjabi way. Mustafa Qureshi (in the role of a lifetime) as Noorie Nath is the evil. A demented sadomasochist like no other, his entry is the tale of legends. We are introduced to a close-up of his foot wrapped in chains, the howling musical note, the staccato laughter and then the most menacing yet hilarious entry dialogue known to man: “Nawa ayah ain soneya?” And if we weren’t having enough fun, Chakori, as Daro Nathni, gives a spectacular performance, probably the best of her career as the sister of Noorie Nath who is as at least as demented and psychotic as her brother.

What you need to remember by heart-as many do- are the confrontations between Maula Jatt and Noorie Nath where both exchange booming one liners, the juggat as well as a number of high pitched war cries, the barrak both unique to Punjabi culture. Ok, the visual style might give some a headache-the sudden close-ups, the whiplash pan – which is very popular in Indian soap-operas today. The production values are horrible and the sound is pathetic, but who can deny the sheer menace of Noorie Nath, the electric chemistry between Sultan Rahi and Mustafa Qureshi, the last fight -where Maula Jatt slaughters at least a hundred men, and made a diehard fan exclaim that it inspired the makers of Matrix 2 to do the same with Neo – and the dialogue, which if nothing else, is street poetry (Rating – 2 OUT OF 5)

Cast and Production Credits

Year – 1979, Genre – Action, Country – Pakistan, Language – Punjabi, Producer – Sarwar Bhatti, Director – Yunus Malik, Music Director – Inayat, Cast – Sultan Rahi, Mustafa Qureshi, Chakori, Aasiya, Kaifi, Adeeb

Action