Hrishi Da, you did some fantastic stuff for us middle-class-small-towners. We believed in your characterizations. We identified in your natural settings. In your movies rush was less on roads and more in houses. Had less of Mumbai, and more of rest of India. Comedy wasn't loud, slapstick. Pathos was subtle rather than dramatic.
Stars played characters instead themselves. I loved your Mili. I loved the brooding Amitabh of Mili. I loved the way you left Mili open ended. I loved the naughty Jaya in Guddi. There are so many such Gudda,Guddis in schools. I loved that prayer from Guddi.
I cried at the end of Abhiman. I still cry when I see it. I can feel for Amitabh. My heart churns for Jaya. Oh, it is so real! Anand is so refreshing. Rajesh Khanna is lovable. Someone else would have made it gloomy. Again, ending was unthinkable.
Namak Haram gave us a star. Not Rajesh Khanna. He was the waning one. Its Amitabh. He stole the thunder from Rajesh.
Who can forget Parimal Tripathi aka Pyarey Mohan, Sukumar Sinha, Sulekha Chaturvedi, Vasudha and how they together pulled a fast one their "Jijja Ji" - Raghavendra Sharma! Or those lectures in Botany by the Professor of English. And the link between Corolla and Karela ? Not those who have seen it.
Golmaal has even bettered Chupke Chupke. Ek Jhooth Chhupane Ke Liye Sau Jhooth Bolne PAdtey Hain. Sheer magical screenplay and performances of boys and girls next door. A perfect dose against foul mood and related ailments.
Buddha Mil Gaya presented a murder mystery. It also had Aayo Kahan Se Ghanshyam, Bhali Bhali Si Ek Surat, and Raat Kali. Bawarchi was another household saga so commonly found but so simplistically handled.
Khoobsurat, Jhoothi explored the new dimension of Rekha and again so middle class, so identifiable. Sadma brought tears, and Bemisaal was indeed bemisaal.
Your tele venture Talash, where Alok Nath disappears, was excellent too.
But I loved your unheard, unseen Jurmana the most. One of your few movies I saw just once. That's because they never telecasted again. What a story of sin, guilt and repentance! Amitabh with negative shades, and here I must add - you had handled Amitabh the best; better than Chopras, Sippys, Mehras and Desais.
You gave us your fabulous under study in Gulzar. You yourself were the offshoot of brilliant Bimal Roy. Talented artists like Utpal Dutt, Omprakash, David, Asrani found new feet under your guidance.
We will miss you. Like the last line in Anand, "Anand Marte Nahin", people like you would never die from our memories.