Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Dhoop Kinaray - At the Edge of the Sun

Have been on a Pakistani serial watching spree these past few days. Just re-watched Dhoop Kinaray, one of the several brilliant dramas that PTV churned out during its Golden Age, and am absolutely gushing forth with its praises again, which is what happens every time I watch it.Everything about this drama is classic. From its novel concept, gripping story line and fabulously well-written dialogues and characters, to its au naturel direction, its brilliant casting, and immediately identifiable soundtrack - the whole is even better than the sum of all its parts.
Let's start with the essentials.
1. Story/script: Thank you Haseena Moin, you wonderful, wonderful woman. One look at Moin's writing credits (Ankahi, Aahat, Tanhaiyaan, Zer Zabar Paish, Dhund, Dhoop Kinaray etc.) and you have but an idea of her creative calibre and mastery over Urdu. *standing ovation*
Focussing on just Dhoop Kinaray for the anon...
An exceptional, convincing and very well-told romantic story between a frothy, lovable, beautiful young medical intern (Zoya) and her much-older, very hot, sullen, no-nonsense, broody, intelligent and totally awesome boss, a pediatrician of some note (Dr Ahmer) . Throw in a smorgasbord of fantastic supporting characters (Baba, Anji, Dr Irfan, Fazeelat, the other interns etc.) and an evil-psycho-hateful-type vamp like you won't believe (Dr Sheena: Yukh thoooo!) and you have all the ingredients that Haseena Moin used to make DK a work of art beyond compare.
Did I mention the pace of this drama? It speeds along from start to finish like that *snaps fingers* and when the story concludes at just the right time, you feel a twinge of regret that it's all ended too soon. THAT'S the mark of a good writer, what?

2. Direction:
Directed by Rahat Kazmi's/Dr Ahmer's real-life wife, Saira Kazmi. Was watching a random video off YouTube where she was explaining how she was all about realistic drama and a natural style of story-telling. Hey, Saira, we believe you. Absolutely. Well done, I say.

3. Casting:
In terms of casting, I don't think any televised drama has ever since, or ever will, get it this right.
-Rahat Kazmi as Dr Ahmer: Drool factor 10/10;
-Marina Khan as Dr Zoya: Beautiful, fun, innocent and extremely lovable as female protagonist - every young girl wanted to be her;
-Sajid Hasan as Dr Irfan: I want one to go, please... My God, Dr Irfan's hilarious character is everyone's favourite memory of DK;
-Kehkashaan Awaz as the sweet Anji, Zoya's childhood friend and neighbour;
-The acid spewing Dr Sheena, played by Badar Khalil- DIE DIE DIE! Has anyone ever managed to play a character so universally hateful and psyched? Even her unfortunate ABBA hairdo makes you want to scalp her;
-Zoya's adorable father Baba, played by Qazi Wajid. *grin*
-Fazeelat: Zoya's aaya since forever; a loud, abrasive and extremely loving, paan-chewing harridan who is the proverbial coconut - hard on the outside, soft inside.

All the actors were catapulted to superstardom after Dhoop Kinaray, if they weren't established as top-of-the-league already.
Here's a classic bit from Dhoop Kinaray. It's the beginning of the story, we see Dr Ahmer (hubba hubba) leading his interns on rounds, and Dr Zoya goofing up and irking the hell out of him. *flashback to own college gaffes*

4. Soundtrack: DK has an eminently hummable soundtrack. Ghazals by Nayyara Noor, poetry by Faiz Ahmad Faiz. I've been humming the background music stupidly for days now. Even to put my baby nephew to sleep. He's six months old and then some, but he gets it.
Here's a good link to Dhoop Kinaray's soundtrack. It's got MP3s, lyrics, translations and videos.

And now a video of the most grin-inducing romantic bit from the whole series... the bit where the two docs go gallivanting on a field trip and we as audiences pee our pants in anticipation of all the romance that will follow. "HE HOLDS HER HAND!" OMG OMG OMG! This was a very big deal in Pakistani dramas, okay? Ha ha. Lyrics (by Faiz) as follows:
Raat yoon dil mein teri khoee hui yaad aaye
Jaise veeraane mein chhupke se bahaar aa jaaye;
Jaise sehraaon mein haule se chale baad-e-naseem;
Jaise beemaar ko be-wajhaa qaraar aa jaaye
.

5. Style Statement: Dhoop Kinaray oozes in sophistication and style, whether it's sartorial or cultural or verbal. Class will tell, is what I always say.
The clothes the characters wear in this series were the height of fashion then. I promise, they were. Our family (and all salwar-kameez wearing folk everywhere I suppose) always used to take the lead from PTV's contemporary dramas in terms of fashion trends. What they wore, we wore. (This is not true anymore. What they wear on PTV nowadays, I could never wear. Too little textile used and full length salwars and sleeves seem to be a thing of the past. But wait! This is neither here nor there.)
And then the depiction of family life, the tehzeeb, the beauty of well-spoken Urdu, the shaairi mixed in with everyday dialogue - most endearing about Pakistani dramas...
Even the hair styles, yes, even them! They were oh-so-cool back then. (Coincidentally, I had Zoya Khan's boy-cut all my girlhood days. Also known as the Princess Diana cut. *blush*)

Anyway. To cut a long story short, Dhoop Kinaray is aces. Those of you who haven't watched, start downloading all episodes from YouTube or just go to the many online sources and buy the original DVD. Absolutely worth it, since it's so cheap. About USD 20 or so.

When I look at the tripe that calls itself 'drama' on channels today (especially Indian tele-serials.... gaaah!...) laughing alone does not satisfy. I need to point AND laugh. Which I do, before changing channels very, very fast.

15 comments:

Fahad said...

Marina Khan!!! *drooool*

I used to loveeee her. What a, she was.

Basically Blah said...

Wow...sounds interesting... and here I was thinking that teleserials were only as 'good' as the Colors crappola or Bold n the Bootiful even...

A Lost Writer said...

I used to love most of the PTV series (grew up on a diet of weekday afternoon soaps in the middle east!)- dhoop kinare was a game-changer, really.

the urdu was mindblowingly poetic - even all non-stop talking that marina's character indulged in - and i had a huge crush on dr irfan's ready responses. sigh...

the only grouse i had was that the final episode always seemed really abrupt - but after the endless procession of K-iarrhea that Ms Kapoor leashed out, they seem perfectly timed.

longblackveil said...

@Blah: WHAT???!! You haven't watched/heard of 'Dhoop Kinare' and others of this ilk? Purchase and watch immediately, I say. Unless you don't understand Urdu. Then fuggedaboutit. :)

@LostWriter: I used to feel the final episode ended too soon as well, until it hit me that we've become too used to long-drawn out romantic slo-mo climaxes.
Am now very glad Haseena Maoin and Saira Kazmi ended it as they did. Kept it short and very, very sweet. Abrupt as it is, my family and I always end up cheering loudly and clapping when Dr Ahmer grabs Zoya's hand. *sigh* (Fade to Dhoop Kinaray soundtrack)

A Lost Writer said...

ah yes...the final scene...and enough left to one's own imagination, as opposed to the chronic magnification of every emotion (in triplicate) that one is subject to these days.

Vinayak Razdan said...

Border people never had enough of 'Dhoop Kinaray'. It helped that the reception of PTV was always better than that of Doordarshan. And if it was not, you could always go to the the rooftop and do the little antenna dance while singing 'aya kya, ab aya kya, ab. ab'.

longblackveil said...

Yup. I read somewhere that PTV dramas were very big in Punjab as well.
Hahahah@ antenna fixing routine. We still do that in our village in Doda. Abba's got a DTH dish which edventurous school kids keep playing with in our absence.
So an hour or so of "Aava? Vaieen? Aav kya?" is par for the course every time.

Fahad said...

Pretty, why have you used 'At the Edge of the Sun' for?

bollyviewer said...

Sorry to be so late to the party. But I just discovered your blog, and I'm so happy to find Dhoop Kinarey here! There's precious little written about PTV serials in blogland, and this was the jewel in the crown of the golden age PTV dramas. It wasnt popular just in the border areas, in the 90s, you could find this even in Bombay - along with the likes of Baqra Kishton pe and other Haseena Moin serials. I was in school when this first came out, and had already been given a scene-by-scene account of it, not to mention all the key dialogues, long before I got to see it. And still, nothing could've prepared me for its awesomeness. I do wish I could find a decent print of it though. The only copies floating around seem to have been converted from a bad VHS! :-(

PS: If you did go on a PTV-oldies kick, please do write about them. There were so many good ones, that seem to have retreated into oblivion now.

Yasin said...

WOW, How could I have missed this one..
Didnnt expect that I would find someone who openly cherishes PTV's "golden age" though I am sure everyone concerned misses it...
The post made me nostalgic. Even today I watch their tid-bits on youtube, My fav happens to be Talaash, where Junoon (my god band! ) plays its own part...(I still laugh at Salmans ludicrous hair-do back then and Brians broken Urdu) Have you seen Talaash ? or Dhundlay raaste for that matter (Junaid jamsheed with Vital Signs)... Please tell me , Is it possible to get their DVD's in Jammu or anywhere?

and @Vinayak Razadan : So perfectly described, that I am reliving my childhood :)

Sucharita said...

I never had the opportunity to watch this amazing serial during my growing up days.
I recently came across this series and i must say - wat a story .
But the highlight of this serial are its dialogues. even though i do not understand urdu
a lot but i love this language and the way dialogues are written and delivered in this
serial is just amazing. Am watching this series now-a-days and am loving every moment of it.
It just pulls back in time - amazing work done by all the artistes. You cant help but fall
in love with them. Every character is so well placed that you feel no one else cud have done
a better justice to his / her character.
Also i read recently somewhere that Haseena Moin wrote this story in just 2 hrs afer a
challenge thrown at her by one of her friends. I was wondering if this is wat she cud do
in just 2 hrs - we can just imagine the extent of her creativity.
Lovely show - wish they had more like these in present times. Short but memorable.

Anonymous said...

I never had the opportunity to watch this amazing serial during my growing up days.
I recently came across this series and i must say - wat a story .
But the highlight of this serial are its dialogues. even though i do not understand urdu
a lot but i love this language and the way dialogues are written and delivered in this
serial is just amazing. Am watching this series now-a-days and am loving every moment of it.
It just pulls back in time - amazing work done by all the artistes. You cant help but fall
in love with them. Every character is so well placed that you feel no one else cud have done
a better justice to his / her character.
Also i read recently somewhere that Haseena Moin wrote this story in just 2 hrs afer a
challenge thrown at her by one of her friends. I was wondering if this is wat she cud do
in just 2 hrs - we can just imagine the extent of her creativity.
Lovely show - wish they had more like these in present times. Short but memorable.

jayanti_dj said...

Hi,
loved your review..I have a favor to ask..could you please post a detailed story of the show "Dhoop Kinare" ..Sony tv has started a show called Kuch to log kahenge based on this show and Iam dying to know how the story is going to progress ..cant wait for the episodes and at the same time dont want to watch Dk till this one ends...if you like i can send my email id so that you can email it to me...
hope you would agree.

vibha said...

hi,

I m watching kuch to log kahenge regularly and I wanted to know how the story proceeds further as day by day its going interesting..can u please let me know from where this book or DVD can be available, or can i know whether is it available in english or not?

Arun said...

I watched "Dhoop Kinaray" TV series at the time of 90's. Me and my family love to watch that time. Few days back I purchased the original VCD from website www.Moviemart.in . This took me back to the old-memories of 90's. Dhoop kinaray is one of perfect drama series I have ever seen. I got to know from one of my friend abut the remake of Dhoop Kinaray, named" Kuch toh log kahenge". This is also a awesome TV serial. All the characters in Dhoop Kinarey are famous like Zoya Khan. I am Loving It.