The Principle Of Coincidence is the backbone of the Hindi film industry. Ever
wondered what we would have done without it? Imagine Bollywood without those 'Mere
bhai!' scenes between separated brothers whose lives mysteriously intersect after
twenty years, or those wherein jigri dosts fall in love with the same girl, or
the ones in which the right letter falls into the wrong hands. Everywhere you
look, coincidence holds the strangest and the most absurd plots together and prevents
Bollywood from falling apart.
Mukaddar Ka Sikandar was one movie that was the harbinger of the coincidence principle.
It set certain trends that have now taken the shape of classic cliches thanks
to our 'inspired' filmmakers. A hungry, nameless orphan meets his destiny in a
rich little motherless girl, Kaamna. He manages to get himself employed by her
father, but also manages to get himself thrown out in a few days.
Kaamna moves to Bombay. But the boy cannot let her go without fulfilling the promise
he made to her - a promise that he would replace her broken doll. This takes him
to Bombay, where, by some miracle, he sees her walking down the road with her
father, and runs after them. A vehicle almost hits him, but he is saved by a woman
who, by a stroke of luck, is missing a son. She promptly adopts him, naming him
Sikander. And believe it or not, she works for Kaamna's father!
The father is not happy with this turn of events, and turns Sikander out of his house. But Sikander steals the promised doll from a store, breaks into Kaamna's house on her birthday, and is caught with her necklace in his hand. He gets thrown out again and Kaamna develops a strong hatred for him. To top it all, his mother dies. He meets an old Baba who tells him, in classical Hindi-film style, to make a friend of sadness and to laugh at misfortune. Sikander does just that, and grows up to be Amitabh Bachchan.
He gets rich by reporting smugglers to the police and collecting rewards. Vishaal (Vinod Khanna) and Zohra (Rekha) make their entrances and you get to see a lot of four way love. The rest of the movie is quite predictable and boring today, because we have been bombarded with similar films for about a quarter of a century. Muqaddar Ka Sikandar's redeeming features are its terrific music (O Sathi Re, Salaame Ishq Meri Jaan), Rekha (who looks her best, and that's saying something!) and Amitabh Bachchan (who delivers the expected).
The movie is a great entertainer if you can transport yourself to the era when
it was released, when such entertainment still wasn't distorted by redundancy.
In any case, you have the star of the millenium featuring in it. Let not the long-drawn
fights, love-triangles, sacrifices, altruism, misunderstanding, suicide, promises
etc. bother you. Just check out on how this movie transformed an angry young man
into the legend that he is today.