|Directed by||Subhash Ghai|
|Produced by||Rajoo Farouqui, Subhash Ghai|
|Written by||Sachin Bhowmick (screenplay)
Subhash Ghai (Storyl)
|Music by||A R Rahman|
|Running time||179 min|
Taal (Hindi: ताल, Urdu: تال) is a 1999 Bollywood film and later dubbed into Tamil and directed by Subhash Ghai. Taal was an official selection by Roger Ebert of his 2005 Most Under Appreciated Film Festival. The film stars Anil Kapoor, Akshaye Khanna, Aishwarya Rai, Amrish Puri and Alok Nath.
Manav Mehta (Akshaye Khanna) comes to visit India with his wealthy, infamous father Jagmohan Mehta (Amrish Puri), his aunt and uncle, and his father's employees. In Chambu he meets Mansi (Aishwarya Rai), the beautiful daughter of a spiritual singer named Tara Babu; their families meet, and Jagmohan and Tara Babu become acquainted and friendly toward each other. Manav and Mansi fall in love, but when Jagmohan learns of this he packs the family up and moves them to their house in Mumbai, with the excuse that Mansi and her father are of low social status. However, he is nice to Tara Babu's face and invites him to come and stay with him and Mumbai if he- Tara Babu- ever happens to be travelling there. Mansi is distressed by Manav's departure but he assures her that he will not abandon her and that everything will be fine.
When Tara Babu learns of Manav and Mansi's affair he is at first angry but soon agrees to travel to Mumbai to visit his younger sister Pradha and to meet Manav's family. Instead they are insulted by Jagmohan's sister-in-law, brother, and the employees and endure hostile treatment (which include being forced to sit in wait outside for 6 hours before being invited into the house; being forced to sit on a bench near a guard dogs' cage; and being told that they should have made an appointment before coming to visit). When Jagmohan finally arrives at the scene, he too insults Tara Babu, which results in Tara Babu slapping Jagmohan on the face. Manav also arrives, and he rudely reprimands Tara Babu as well. Meanwhile Mansi, after witnessing Manav shout at her father, makes it clear to Manav that she wants nothing to do with him anymore (by bluntly pulling her necklace- a gift from Manav- from her neck and throwing it on the ground). She and her father then leave the Mehta household deeply hurt and grieved.
Mansi soon ends up meeting Vikrant Singh (Anil Kapoor), a successful and famous music producer/director, who happens to be a fan of Tara Babu's work. With the encouragement of her aunt Pradha, she arranges a three-year contract with Vikrant, and Mansi performs dance numbers and remixes of Tara Babu's songs as well as some of Vikrant's productions. She wins awards and becomes a sensation in India. In the meantime Vikrant starts to fall in love with Mansi. Matters are further complicated when Manav arrives to apologize to Mansi for what he and his family did; she rejects him out of hurt for how he treated her father. But he tells her that he knows she still loves him, and that he will wait for her. Vikrant learns of what happened between Manav and Mansi, but he chooses to ignore it; he has a few encounters with Manav but takes them lightly.
Soon Vikrant proposes to her; her father and aunt encourage her to accept it, with the hope that it will help her forget about Manav. She accepts the proposal even though she is not in love with Vikrant. After winning an International MTV Award in Canada, she comes back to India to prepare for the marriage. In the meantime Jagmohan and Tara Bhabu patch things up after Jagmohan realizes his mistake.
On the day of the marriage Manav arrives and tells Mansi that by marrying Vikrant when she loves Manav she is deceiving him and herself, and that marriage is not a contract but a union of two souls; he reminds her that he loves her and will never stop waiting for her. Jagmohan also comes to the wedding with Manav and Tara Babu. Vikrant soon realizes, after seeing Mansi's reaction to seeing Manav, that she doesnt love him. He assures her that the three of them can still be friends, and urges her to run to Manav. Jagmohan and Tara Babu give their blessings, and Manav and Mansi embrace. One of the last scenes shows everyone taking a family picture at the Mehta household after the wedding.
- Akshaye Khanna ... Manav
- Anil Kapoor ... Vikrant Singh
- Aishwarya Rai ... Mansi
- Amrish Puri ... Jagmohan Mehta
- Alok Nath ... Tara Babu
- Was the first Hindi movie to appear in the Top 20 Box Office Charts in the USA.
- As in all his films, Subhash Ghai makes an appearance as the man listening to the song from his own film Pardes.
- There is a kiss scene between Aishwarya and Akshaye in this film. However, in many interviews (such as one on Good Morning America in 2003) Aishwarya Rai stated that she had never done a kiss scene in any of her films. In the 2006 film Dhoom 2, Aishwarya performed a kiss scene with Hrithik Roshan; there has been much controversy about it and there is currently a court case pending in India.