Amrish Puri's birth anniversary: Remembering his iconic performance in 'Nayak'
Amrish Puri, who would've turned 89 today, was known to pull off various types of roles with equal aplomb. But his panache for making even the most negative character into a cinematic icon remains unmatched. One such role has to be him playing CM Balraj Chauhan in cult hit Nayak: The Real Hero in 2001. The character is immortal, simply because of Puri.
Puri's performance as a power-hungry CM still strikes a chord
The film, a remake of Shankar's 1999 Tamil-language film Mudhalvan, also starred Anil Kapoor and Rani Mukerji. In the movie, Kapoor (Shivaji Rao), in a live-interview, exposes the corrupt CM. Chauhan then offers Rao to take over the post for a day, which led to a gripping moral and political tussle. Puri's realistic and shrewd portrayal keeps you engrossed, every time you watch Nayak.
The iconic interview has even cemented its place in pop-culture
The interview of Chauhan by Rao remains one of the most memorable moments in cinema history. The way Puri acted first with aggression and ease, and ultimately got speechless by putting a finger on his lips, is a masterclass in nuanced acting in itself. Supported deftly and efficiently by Kapoor, memes and gifs of the interaction are now an inseparable part of pop-culture.
The man who was so good at being 'bad'
Puri had a flair of making the protagonist demand for attention in front of him, when he commanded the same with ease. In Nayak, you are repulsed by Chauhan and low-key hate the character, but if you look at the scripting, he's basically like any other politician character written. However, it was Puri's sheer brilliance that makes you feel satiated, when he gets killed.
The strange chemistry Puri and Kapoor shared remains noteworthy
The actor passed away in 2005 after a long battle with cancer, leaving an eternal void in the industry. Kapoor, who has worked with him in movies like Mr. India, Meri Jung and played his son in Virasat, talks fondly about Puri. Mr. Puri, we will always miss you. There won't be another Mogambo!