Dev Anand, Kalpana Kartik/ 140 minutes/Black & White/NTSC Format (with English Subtitles
Dev Anand's best known "proletarian" performance as a taxi driver in a story inspired by film noir. Mangal, alias Hero (Anand), rescues Mala (Kartik) from some hoodlums. This act of chivalry leads to a series of encounters with a violent criminal gang who, later in the film, steal Mangal's cab to commit a bank robbery. Mala, who has ambitions of becoming a singer in the movies, finds shelter in Mangal's room, which also forces her, in the most dramatic part of the film involving a mysterious sister in law who appears and equally suddenly exits from the story, to cut her hair and to masquerade as a man. Mangal teaches her the foul mouthed habits of the city's proletariat, their swaggering gait and their way of lighting a cigarette. Much of the film's action takes place in a nightclub where an Anglo-Indian cabaret dancer. Sylvie (Ramani), works and who is in love with Mangal. The film climaxes with a shoot out in the club between the gang, aided by a bunch of film industry types, and Mangal's friends. The film's explict invocation of Hollywood is particularly will realised in the character of the flaxen haired Anglo-Indian drummer in Sylvia's band, Tony (Corke). He also washes cabs, helps to save Mangal's life and in a remarkable shot, lies respledent on the roof of Mangal's taxi in the background during a drunken chat between Mangal and his comic sidekick (Walker). Most of the songs were Ramani's cabaret numbers with a few additions; the upbeat "socialist-realist" taxi drivers number Chache KOi Khush Ho Chahe Galiyam Bazaar De sung by Kishore Kumar and the Jaye To Jaye sung by Talat Malmood.