Gul-E-Bakavali (1924)

 ●  Silent ● Running Time: TBA

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One of the most successful silent films tells the legend of the fairy Bakavali (Zubeida), her deivi pushp (or divine flower) Gul known for its healing powers, and the Eastern prince Taj- ul-Mulk (Khalil), who wants the flower to cure his blind father. The origins of this popular legend vary. One version claims it was introduced into India by Nihal Chand Lahori's Mazhab-e-lshq, translating from Izzat Ali Bengali's Persian version around the turn of the 19th C. under the influence of his British teacher John Gilchrist at the Fort William College in Calcutta. Another traces it to Abley Sheikh's narration of the story in 1513 couplets from which it was adapted by seveml Kashmiri writers into Urdu couplets in the Masnavi form. It was a favourite on the Parsee stage, esp. the scenes where Taj-ul-Mulk faces his villainous brothers who steal the flower as Bakavali is turned to stone and installed in a temple, and her human re-birth. It was often filmed, including in several South Indian languages (Dhlrubhai Desai's Paristan, 1957; a Tamil version starring M.G. Ramachandran in 1955; a Telugu one, Gul-e-Bakavali Katha, starring N.T. Rama Rao in 1962). This version, made in 97 scenes, featured Kohinoor superstars Zubeida and Khalil. It was one of the first films to embrace the folk-fantasy mode as opposed to e.g. Rathod and Dave's mythologicals ([[Bhakta Vidur]], Mabasati Ansuya; both 1921).

Cast: Fatma Begum, Zubeida Maharaj

Crew: Kanjibhai Rathod (Director)

Genres: Drama

Release Dates: 01 Jan 1924 (India)

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as Bakavali
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Film Type:
Colour Info:
Black & White
Frame Rate:
24 fps
Aspect Ratio:
2.39:1 (Scope)