What Rishi Kapoor taught me…
Hindi films and their actors have a way of bringing together people across generations, and veteran actor Rishi Kapoor did just that ("Rishi Kapoor’s funeral attended by close family, friends", Gulf News, April 30). As a child, raised by die-hard Kapoor family fans, I was no stranger to the reruns of films like “Bobby”, “Chandini” and “Karz” as the weekend came around. With Rishi Kapoor at the wheel, this hotchpotch of action, romance, comedy and intricately choreographed dance sequences was just the escape we all needed at the end of a hectic week.
What made him resonate the most with people from my generation was his message that we can be who we want to be, and not just what others want to see us as. He did this by reinventing himself in each role.
From playing the romantic charmer, donning cashmere sweaters in Switzerland during the1980s, to portraying the nuances of a forthright schoolteacher in “Do Dooni Chaar”, Rishi Kapoor gave us roles that were evident of his tenacious understanding of his craft. I remember being completely bowled over by his portrayal of a melancholic 75-year-old Babulal Vakharia in the film “102 Not Out”. Through his portrayal of a man so scared of life as much as he dreaded death, Rishi Kapoor subtly threw light on how we often forget to live even while we are alive.
In his role as Babulal, Rishi Kapoor taught me that living is refusing to let the rhythm of life drown you into submission, and these are words I live by. Today, one of my favourite stars joins the other stars in the sky. Thank you for everything - Rishi Kapoor.
From Ms Mehak Madaan
Living in our memories
The stars are falling. Today veteran actor Rishi Kapoor passed away at the age of 67 ("Rishi Kapoor: Bollywood's fiery activist", Gulf News, April 30) I've never really watched his films, most of them were before my time. However the reverence with which my parents talk about him is enough to understand his impact on Indian cinema. They grew up watching him on the silver screen much like we watch our heroes on Netflix. The only movie I've watched of his is one that my dad made me watch with him. The movie was called "Mera Naam Joker" and stars Raj Kapoor in the titular role. However his son, Rishi Kapoor, plays the younger version of his character. Seeing that chubby, rosy-cheeked young boy on the screen, even then I think people could tell he'd be a big star someday, and that was clear from the passion with which he enacted the tiny role he had in that movie. It's something I can't really forget.
My heart goes out to Ranbir Kapoor, his son, and the rest of the Kapoor family. I hope they'll all be okay. Bollywood actor Irrfan Khan passed away yesterday. It can't help but feel like this wasn't supposed to happen. Fifty three is too young for someone so talented and full of life to be taken away. Every role he did, he made it his own. From “Lunchbox” to “Caravan” to “Life of Pi”, he played every character beautifully. There's a raw and realness to his acting that is beautiful. The passing of both these legends, reminds us that life is fragile and precious. Every moment matters and nothing is certain. All we can do is hug our loved ones and watch some good cinema. Both these stars will live forever on the reels of the silver screen, and in our memories.
From Mr Umar Alam
Celebrating Rishi Kapoor’s life
The cherubic face of “Mera Naam Joker” and “Bobby”, is no more ("Rishi Kapoor: His life and Bollywood career in pictures", www.gulfnews.com, April 30) I loved to listen to the songs in Rishi Kapoor’s film, “Bobby”.
He was a romantic hero, who was seen opposite actress Neetu Singh in many films, whom he later married. He was too relatable as the octogenarian son to actor Amitabh Bachchan in the film “102 Not Out”. He was great as the father in the film “Rajma Chawal”. And absolutely no one can forget him in his chirpy role in the 1977 film, “Amar Akbar Anthony”.
Kapoor was battling cancer for two years. Words cannot describe my feelings properly. How does one mourn the passing away of someone you have liked and admired so much? But I’ll correct myself. We don’t need to mourn his loss, but should celebrate his life as he lived a full one. His followers on twitter, with whom he had constant exchanges, would agree with me.
From Ms Aruna Mathur
New Delhi, India
Will live on in films
The 67-year-old veteran Bollywood actor Rishi Kapoor's demise is an irrecoverable loss for the Bollywood film industry. He started his first film with his father, Raj Kapoor, also a veteran actor. Rishi Kapoor made his first on-screen appearance in a cameo for a song, in his father’s film “Shree 420” when he was three years old. He acted in many films and did all kinds of roles and captured the minds of millions. His relatively latest film, “102 Not Out” with Amitabh Bachchan was remarkable. Kapoor is no more, but his films are still here. This is another blow to the film industry. I pray for his grieving family during this time.
From Mr K. Ragavan
A leading hero of his time
From playing a hero to a villain in his career, Rishi Kapoor has done it all. In his hit film “Bobby” where he plays a romantic, to his role as Rauf Lala, a villain in the remake of the Indian film “Agneepath” in 2012, he’s played diverse roles. His charming smile and dance skills made him the heartthrob of his time, in the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s. He romanced almost every leading heroine of the era. No actor could make those sweaters look so cool, the way he did. Words are not enough to talk about his contribution to the Indian film industry. Take a bow, Rishi Kapoor, and may you rest in peace.
From Ms Christina Scurville
Another hero gone
Yet another great Bollywood hero has passed away. This is a great loss for the film industry. Our condolences to the Kapoor family. Memories of his great films will always remain with us, and will especially miss his romantic films. Another great personality of Bollywood passing away makes our hearts empty. This is really unbelievable.
From Mr Ashfaq Rahman
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