The competition for the most talented actress in Bollywood is really tough. There will be very strong votaries for Madhubala, Nargis, Meena Kumari, Vyjyantimala, Sharmila Tagore,Waheeda Rehman, Rekha, Shabana Azmi, Smita Patil and in the current generation after the retirement of Aishwarya Rai only Vidya Balan. That’s about all who matter for me.
Towering above them all is my personal favorite Suchitra Sen, fighting for life in a hospital. She is my favorite because she acted in only three films in Hindi and no one can come near her be it in Aandhi, Bambai Ka Babu or Mamta. But she is out of contention precisely for this reason, her very rare appearance in Bollywood.
Real talent has to stand the test of time because there has to be longevity as well as quality. No one talks of one film wonders like Kumar Gaurav with any sense of respect.
Madhuri Dixit’s Irresistible Charm
I was recently watching ‘Comedy Nights with Kapil’ where Madhuri Dixit was the guest and I fell in love with her shamelessly, just like Kapil who, probably has to do it for the camera and for the TRPs. But whatever his motivation, I, as a viewer, was mesmerised by the act where she uses only her eyes and facial expressions to act out the song ‘Dil To Bachcha Hai Ji’. Without moving out of her seat; without getting up she killed me and so many others.
Talent, for me has to be intoxicating and there is no one like Madhuri. While the Madhubalas, Nargises and the Waheedas had their hey- day, Madhuri is like the eternal spring. In her last few years before she left India to become Ms.Madhuri Dixit Nene. She matched her histrionics with much younger heroines like Aishwarya Rai and Karishma Kapoor and emerged a clear winner. The best part of her career graph for me is that she has managed to retain her sensuality without ever appearing vulgar or obscene. She has hardly done a film in her entire career which she would be ashamed of watching with her children and adoring husband.
A Diva ought to know her strengths as much as her weaknesses. Why I put Madhuri above everyone else, besides her resplendent beauty, is her choice of roles after her return to Bollywood after such a long break. She started with dance shows where she is unsurpassed and as the demand for her gradually grew up she plunged into films with eyes open and her head held high.
Hats off to her and hope that we will get to see more of her.
By Amitabh Srivastava