As Bollywood's megastar Amitabh Bachchan turns 70 and the world of entertainment around the world rises in unison to raise toast to one of the finest performers who has walked on earth, it indeed is a moment of pride for the cinema fraternity.
It is a moment of reckoning and to give it an element of immortality it would indeed be worthwhile to try to trace 70 such moments of reckoning from his films which have been a source of inspiration for generations to come.
As those seventy moments would be too long it would be proper to break it into three parts. Of those seventy such moments we give you the first 25 which would be followed by next 25 and then 20.
SAAT HINDUSTANI: He set the trend from his very first film, of playing characters which are different, playing the role of a Muslim on debut, which was seldom done earlier, and still is not done on debut, set the pace for his acting career.
BHUVAN SHOME: Big B's voice is one of the most sought after voice overs. Big B had given the mastery of that genre way back in 1970 through the second film BHUVAN SHOME, and had given an inkling to the world of how he was going to dominate the world of cinema through his voice.
PARWANA: Playing a negative role which has now become a hallmark was taken it to lofted levels by Big B in PARWANA. The cold blooded manner in which he plans and executes murder of Om Prakash in PARWANA could have been one hell of a performance if the film had been a hit.
ANAND: When ANAND is talked about most of us talk about the dialogue bak bak and Babu Moshaiya, but the soft and romantic side of Big B which came in stark motif for the first time was in ANAND in the scene where Rajesh Khanna asks him 'koi to hoga jisko dekh ke saanse tej ho jaatee hongi', and expressions of Big B says it all. Eyes had started emoting for him
RESHMA AUR SHERA: Playing the role of a mute character, the scene where Big B playing the role of Chotu executes the command of his father, Jayant to murder his uncle KN Singh and his son Ranjeet, without uttering a dialogue is the hallmark of this film. It was a first reflection of the hero worship that Big B had for the institution of fatherhood, it being derived from the respect he had for his father.
BOMBAY TO GOA: If one were to pick up one scene which stands out in the film, it is the scene where he confronts the villain Shatrughan Sinha in the climax scene, which later on became the hallmark of his performances in the films to come.
ZANJEER: The film which made him what he was, and there are scores of scenes that stand out for their own merit, but the scene which really oozed of the dignity of uniform and the pride of police, was where he fires Pran by kicking the chair when Pran tries to sit, was one of the significant highlights of the film.
ABHIMAAN: Way back in the early eighties watching the film in a mofussil town in Gorakhpur, the scene that he enacted when the lines from the song, 'tere mere Milan kee ye raina- tujhe thame kai haathon mein', was the scene of ABHIMAAN which had left everybody's eyes moist. The initiative to reach out was what made the scene memorable.
SAUDAGAR: Playing the role of a jaggery maker, the dawn of sense of aghast, when Padma Khanna is not able to make the gur same way as Nutan used to make, pronounced in succinct detail the dilemma of love vs. livelihood and the sense of futility of having pursued love (Padma Khanna) at a cost of livelihood (leaving Nutan) was hallmark scene of the film.
NAMAK HARAAM: It was again within a time span of two years that two thespians clashed, Big B in the process of replacing Kaka. The scene that was outstanding in the film was where there is a confrontation between Amitabh Bachchan and Rajesh Khanna in the end was one of the most memorable scenes of the film.
ROTI KAPDA AUR MAKAAN: Big B is known as one of the finest stunt performers in Hindi cinema and first glimpse in vivid details was provided in the scene where after his hand gets injured, he plucks out the accelerator chord of the motorbike and drives it by pulling the throttle through his mouth, a Chuck Norris effect, one does not know, but it was impressive.
MAJBOOR: If one of the scenes that stands out in MAJBOOR which underlined how consummate a performed Big B is, it is the scene where he discreetly returns to his house and finds the family in disarray but cannot embrace them as he has to first exonerate himself.
CHUPKE-CHUPKE: Though the film is replete with some brilliant performances, the scene that sets the tone for the film is the scene where Big B alights the train at the Dadar station, and ushering in coolie to go back again is one of the highlights of the film.
FARRAR: One scene that stands out in the film is during the song sung by Lata Mangeshkar picturised on Sharmila Tagore to his son, 'Main Pyaasa tum Sawan', and realization dawning on Big B that he is in fact in his erstwhile lover's house is the hallmark scene of the film.
MILI: MILI is one of the films where Big B plays the role of the brooder and there are two scenes that stand out one when the ball goes to his house and he is ready to confront children and find Jaya Bachchan at the door and the second one in the end where he blasts into the house of Jaya Bachchan and takes her away where the film ends.
DEEWAR: It's famous scenes are always talked about, but there are two scenes that are seldom talked about one, where while sipping the tea at the dockyard he confronts the goons, just before the famous godown scene and the second scene where his batch flips over the other side of the fence and he is not able to retrieve it, a premonition that his end is round the corner.
ZAMEER: Big B is also remembered for some memorable songs, and in this film the song 'Phoolon ke ghere hain', stands out for the energy that he brought into song. The scene that stands out is the scene where he informs Shammi Kapoor that he is not the real son, but an impersonator.
SHOLAY: There are outstanding scenes and outstanding scenes, but two scenes that literally stand out are the mouth organ scene for one where Big B plays a lilting tune in the evening when Jaya Bachchan lights the lamp, and second when he is dying and utters the dialogue- ye kahani bhee adhoori reh gayee.
DO ANJAANE: Big B is one of the few actors who had amazing chemistry with children on the screen. DO ANJAANE was one of those films, and the scene where Big B goes to the boarding school to meet his son, is one of the stealers, probably a replay of the Big B meeting Junior B in real life during those days?
KABHIE KABHIE: This was the time when Big B had probably for the first donned the role of a father to an adult child on the screen and the film is replete with romantic moments, but the real scene stealer was where Big B has to face the situation of choosing between two daughters and the helplessness of the situation was hallmark of the film.
ALAAP: One of the least talked about films of Big B's career, it has one of the most sensitive performances, and the scene that stands out in the film is the scene where Big B as the son driving a horse carriage goes to his erstwhile father to drop him and takes the payment for the service offered.
AMAR AKBAR ANTHONY:The mirror scene in the film where Big B puts ointment on mirror obviously is a scene stealer, but another scene worth talking is the confrontation between him and Vinod Khanna in the film and the famous fight that ensues.
ADALAT: One of the histrionic performances that Big B gave in double role, the scene of conflict between father and son, both played by Big B was its most significant moments, and it again underlined the sense of respect that Big B had for the institution of fatherhood and how through series of performances he underlined its importance.
KHOON PASEENA: It was one of the films of epic confrontations between Big B and Vinod Khanna. But the scene that stands out is where Big B sings, 'Chale gaye thanedar ab dar kahe ka', and Rekha barges in, he had to handle comedy and irony of situation simultaneously.
PARVARISH: The scene that stands out profoundly in the film is the scene where Amjad Khan implores Big B that he being the son of a dacoit should be on his side, and Big B tells Amjad Khan that his only contribution has been in giving birth to him, while Shammi Kapoor gave him life, and dignity, is its hallmark.