The only beautiful face that remains constant in Bollywood since the 60’s era is the evergreen, ageless and timeless beauty – Rekha. When we look at her, the first thing that comes to our mind is that ‘how does she manage to look so beautiful’!? Time has passed, years have gone by but this diva doesn’t seem to age anytime soon. When we see her on a platform, all we can do is admire her timeless grace, eyes that speak so much and the way she says so much while saying nothing at all.
As Rekha turns a year older today, we remember some of her best performances till date, which will forever remain classics:
1-Khubsoorat 1980: Rekha won her first ever Filmfare best actress award for her role as a charming, chirpy, bubbly, girl next door character in the film. Directed by Hrishikesh Mukherjee, this film also won Filmfare best movie award. In the film, Rekha played the character of Manju Dayal, who is a naughty brat and doesn’t believe in living by the rule book. As she goes to stay with her sister for some time, where everyone has to follow certain principles and rules, she gradually with her harmless tactics teaches everyone in the how to live freely on their own terms and do what they love.
2- Silsila 1981: Being one of the most controversial films of all times, this film also sparked rumours of the real-life love triangle between Amitabh bachchan, Rekha and Jaya Bhaduri. Directed by Yash Chopra, this was a romantic drama where Rekha gave yet another classic performance as she played the role of Amitabh’s love interest in the movie. The chemistry between the two was so real that everyone though there was love brewing between the two. Rekha’s acting in the film was highly acclaimed by the critics as well as the audiences.
3- Umrao Jaan 1981: This movie marked the path-breaking performance of the actress. The film which was the adaptation of Urdu novel Umrao Jaan Ada was directed by Muzaffar Ali. The reason why her role of a courtesan and a poet named Umrao Jaan gained so much curiosity and appreciation was that Rekha, who at the beginning of her career did not speak Hindi, took the task of learning the finer shades of the Urdu language. It is said that when Rekha read the script, she said ‘I had a strange feeling that I had Umrao in me’, This statement was said to be true once we saw her as Umrao Jaan on the big screen where she got so deeply into the character, that it left the stunned. It is said that she spoke the dialogues with her eyes in the film. Her portrayal is considered to be one of her career-best performances, and she was awarded the National Film Award for Best Actress for it
4- Khoon Bhari Maang 1988: Apart from parallel cinema, Rekha then took some serious roles, and Khoon Bhari Mang marked her second Filmfare Award for her performance in the film. Directed by Rakesh Roshan, the film and speacially Rekha’s performance as an innocent house wife to a woman full of revenge and anger, was highly applauded by one and all. ML Dhawan from The Tribune, while documenting the famous Hindi films of 1988, remarked that Khoon Bhari Maang was “a crowning glory for Rekha, who rose like a phoenix and bedazzled the audience with her daredevilry.
5- Khiladiyon Ka Khiladi 1966: This was the first time when Rekha portrayed a negative character on screen as Madam Maya. She was seen as a vicious, dangerous, underworld don in the action film directed by Umesh Mehra, which was a major financial success, becoming one of the highest-grossing Indian films of the year. Her portrayal earned her several awards, including the Filmfare Award for Best Supporting Actress and the Star Screen Award for Best Villain.