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aka The Gist 1984 137’ col Hindi d/st/co-sc/co-dial Mahesh Bhatt pc Rajshree Prod. co-sc Sujit Sen co-dial Amit Khanna lyr Vasant Dev c Adeep Tandon m Ajit Varman lp Rohini Hattangadi, Anupam Kher, Soni Razdan, Madan Jain, Suhas Bhalekar, Nilu Phule

Bhatt follows his successful Arth (1982) with this expressionistic psychodrama about old age, fading idealism and political corruption. Old Pradhan (Kher, in his debut performance), a retired headmaster, and his wife Parvati (Hattangadi) learn that their son, studying in New York, has been mugged and killed. Pradhan goes through the trauma of bureaucratic corruption to receive his cremated son’s ashes at the airport. Their tenant Sujata (Razdan), a young actress, is in love with Vilas (Jain), whose father is the corrupt politician Chitre (Phule). When Sujata finds herself pregnant, Pradhan and Parvati believe that it is their son reborn and protect Sujata from Chitre’s threats. The problem of bureaucratic ineptitude is solved when Pradhan goes to meet a minister who turns out to be his former student and still retains his old teacher’s sense of integrity. In the end, the old couple are reconciled to the loss of their son. The film has an oppressive soundtrack, with heavy music and effects underlining the states of loneliness, fear and frustration.