Sassi (1954)

Year – 1954

Language – Urdu

Country – Pakistan

Producer – J.C. Anand

Director – Daud Chand

Music Director – G.A. Chishti

Box-Office Status – Superhit

Cast – Sabiha Khanum, Sudhir, Asha Posley, Nazar, Salim Raza, Zeenat, Bibbo, Ghulam Mohammad, Begum Parveen, G.N. Butt, Maya Devi, Iqbal Sheikh, Gul Zaman, Kanwar, Shah Nawaz

Miscellaneous Information – First Golden Jubilee Urdu film of Pakistan released on 3rd June, 1954 in Lahore. The songs of this film were never released on records and hence were never played on the radio.

Songs List

Song
Year

Singers
Music Director(s)
Lyricist(s)
Bal parey taqdeer mein, dushman zamana ban gaya
1954
Pukhraj Pappo
G.A. Chisthi
Chandni raatoun mein aa pyar ka naghma suna
1954
Inayat Hussain Bhatti, Pukhraj Pappo
G.A. Chisthi
Ghadi do ghadi mein huwa khatam samjho
1954
Inayat Hussain Bhatti, Pukhraj Pappo
G.A. Chisthi
Hato bacho sarkar, sarkar husn ki aati hai
1954
Pukhraj Pappo, Kauser Parveen & Chorus
G.A. Chisthi
Jeenay ka maza lai lai, pehlo mein agar dil hai
1954
Kauser Parveen
G.A. Chisthi
Na yeh chand hoga na taare rahien gay
1954
Pukhraj Pappo
G.A. Chisthi
Nach nach kai ga re mohaniya aisa aaj tarana
1954
Kauser Parveen
G.A. Chisthi
Nighahien milake zara muskura do
1954
Inayat Hussain Bhatti, Pukhraj Pappo
G.A. Chisthi

Review

“Sassi," the widely-heralded Pakistan picture, was premiered at the Minerva Cinema and released simultaneously at seven other cinema houses in Bombay and the suburbs on Friday, December 23, 1955.

Coming after "Dupatta" and "Gulnar," two highly-polished productions from Pakistan, and having its own reputation as a box- office success in that country, "Sassi" aroused many expectations.

Its story, the famous Punjabi legend of the ill-starred lovers Sassi and Punnu, revolves round a princess discarded by her royal father soon after her birth because the astrologers predicted she would bring misfortune to her parents. Adopted into a poor home, Sassi grows up to be a beautiful girl and falls in love with a prince who is at war with her father, the king. After a series of vicissitudes, the lovers are barely married when they are separated. On the night of the wedding itself, Sassi’s prince-husband is kidnapped by his brothers.

Sassi rides after him, while a former suitor follows in hot pursuit of her. The three parties are caught in the desert in a sand-storm. The prince escapes from his kidnappers and goes to rescue Sassi. He is attacked by his rival in love, whom he defeats and kills in a dagger-fight. He reaches Sassi—too late to save her. The lovers die it each other’s arms.

This action-packed story of ill-fated love is in the best tradition of romantic tragedy, abundant in noble feeling and the appeal to virtue and as such could have been turned into an excellent and most engrossing picture. That "Sassi" falls so grievously short of this is because of the puerile direction, the crude treatment, the poor continuity, the unimaginative photography (lovely ladies look drab and dull in this film), the raucous audiography and the ham acting—the general poverty, in short, of technique in every department of production.

Powerful and realistic portrayals from the cast could, perhaps, have raised this picture to emotional heights, but the actors seem nearly all to have suffered from the naive direction.
Sabiha’s performance in the title role is so utterly stagey that it robs the film of both drama and romance.
Sudhir her leading man, is hopelessly inadequate to a role which is the soul of the story and which should have been the main substance of the picture.

In the support, Shah Nawaz, Maya Devi, Bibbo and Ghulam Mohammed rant at the top of their voices through almost the whole of the picture and seem to compete with one another in what would appear to be an exhibition of heavy hamming.

The one redeeming feature of "Sassi" is the beautiful music, the songs being delight­fully scored, cleverly written and rendered by hauntingly melodious voices. But in this department one is amazed to find Hemant Kumar’s famous song-hit, "Na Ye Chand Hoga," and tempted to ask how it got there.

The choreography is spectacular and pleasing to the eye. The dances are beauti­fully put over by Asha Posley and Sabiha. Their performance is instinct with grace and rhythm, expression and movement. But these are mere embellishments which do not redeem the drabness of the picture.