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(1997)

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Summaries

  • Johnny, a musician, belongs to the itinerent troupe of Hameed the ventriloquist. The star attraction of their show is the talking doll Urvashi - seductress, eternal child-woman, one who cannot age or die. When Hameed's voice fails, he sells Urvashi to Johnny, who returns to his small neighbourhood in suburban Mumbai. He reunites with his childhood sweetheart Rosemary and plans to resume his stage performances with Urvashi. To Rosemary who is eager to help Johnny, Urvashi almost seems like the other woman. Johnny's music and his talking doll are a hit with audiences which only fuels Rosemary's insane jealousy. Communal riots break out in the city and Johnny's songs unveil the true culprits behind the controversy. They hit back and Urvashi is destroyed. Johnny is silenced because his medium of expression is gone. Now Rosemary draws him out of his despair, brings him back on the stage and dances in place of Urvashi - the woman becomes the doll.

  • Hameed is a ventriloquist who earns his meagre living through this talent, and a life-size doll he has affectionately named Urvashi, in a coastal village in Goa, India. He is approached by an unemployed young man named John Mendez, who wants to learn this skill from him. Hameed confides in John that he should have gone like the other Muslims to Pakistan, but he has remained here because of Urvashi. He agrees to teach John how to be a ventriloquist, with considerable success. Hameed then becomes seriously ill, and decides to pass on Urvashi to John, so that John can continue on this trade. Hameed passes away, and John takes Urvashi to his home. Soon John and Urvashi make a popular couple all over the region, so much that during election time, a politician approaches John to canvas for his political party for a handsome remuneration. John is uncomfortable in doing this, but is compelled to agree. Things do not go well, and John is threatened by the politician and his hoodlums. In this background, John meets with Rosemary Braganza, the daughter of a garage-owner, who is a lot younger than John, but prefers to be with him. John will now to decide to accept a much younger bride and carry on with the task of appeasing the politician and his men, or simply stop his act altogether.


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