Bollywood Ear Candy: Mere Rang Mein
By Laura Witkowski
There are few song as immediately recognizable in popular culture as Europe’s ‘The Final Countdown’. Let’s face it: If you’re counting down to something, there is no better song to drive that point home. I have no idea what the dudes from Europe are up to these days, but I have a feeling they spend most of their time swimming in a giant spaceship-shaped pool filled with champagne and barely legal girls who can tie cherry stems into knots with their tongues. All of which is paid for via their ‘Final Countdown’ royalties alone. And why shouldn’t that be the case? You’ve earned it, boys!
One place I was not expecting to hear ‘The Final Countdown’ was in the Bollywood family-drama-romance-spectacular Maine Pyar Kiya. I was expecting a lot of over-the-top theatrics and terrible clothing choices as the film came out in 1989 (oh, I was not disappointed). But really, what better way to show the girl of your dreams that you love her than by sneaking her up to the roof of your family home mansion, giving her a terrible ‘November Rain’-esque white dress for her birthday, and then dueting with her to a Hindi love-song version of ‘The Final Countdown’? I seriously challenge you to show me something more romantic.
Of course, I shouldn’t have been that surprised. This is a movie that opens with a number that blatantly rips off another ubiquitous song of the 80s. You should be able to figure it out right away, but let’s just say if you went to the record store in High Fidelity and asked for this song for your daughter, Jack Black would ask if she were in a coma:
Additionally, both the theme from Love Story and Simon & Garfunkel’s ‘The Sound Of Silence’ are recurring themes in the incidental music in Maine Pyar Kiya. I have no idea if proper permissions were obtained to use these songs, and I don’t want to see anybody sent to song jail for a 22 year old offence. I find this song-borrowing charming and fascinating. And really, if anybody deserves to serve time, it’s Salman Khan for wearing those high-waisted jeans. But it was 1989 and he was young and in love. So let’s just let everybody off with a (final countdown) warning.