A very, very, very, very stupid Indian Bigfoot movie with all
the Bollywood trimmings. This means you can expect large scale music
numbers and lots of excess goofiness.
AJOOBA KUDRAT KAA (THE MAGNIFICENT GUARDIAN) is one of
the most obscure films by India’s famed Ramsey brothers Tulsi and Shyam,
who after turning out around 20 Bollywood horror movies decided to make
a film about the legend of the yeti--or Bigfoot--said to reside in the
Their efforts, unfortunately, resulted in this 1991
goof. Unsurprisingly, it was a resounding box office flop, and hasn’t
been seen much since; as of early 2014 the film’s sole home video
appearance was on an out of print Indian VCD, followed by a limited
edition DVR (retitled INDIAN YETI) from the now-defunct Bijouflix.
A band of mountaineers happen upon a yeti in the
Himalayas. One of the mountaineers snaps a picture of the creature, and
upon getting back to civilization shows it to his boss, a slimy
businessman. The latter becomes determined to hunt down the yeti and
turn it into a circus attraction.
In the meantime the young Sasha is kidnapped by the
evil gangster Lala. The latter is looking for revenge against Sasha’s
cop father, who busted Lala years earlier.
Sasha escapes from the cabin where Lala and his goons
are holding her, and runs off into the wilderness--and straight into the
lair of the yeti. She’s freaked out at first but finds the yeti to be an
unexpectedly sweet and nurturing presence, and the two become fast
Lala dispatches his goons to bring back Sasha, and grab
the yeti in the bargain. Sasha’s father and aunt are also on the trail,
and manage to locate the yeti’s cave. They scare off the yeti and take
Sasha back to civilization, just as Lala and co. bust in on the creature
and subdue it.
The scumbags, in cahoots with the evil businessman,
imprison the yeti in a cage and force it to perform for groups of
children. Among the latter is Sasha. She’s with her father, who frees
the yeti, precipitating a lengthy chase through the snow in which Lala
and his henchmen take on the monster. Guess who wins?
I’ve no idea how familiar the Ramsay brothers were with
Bigfoot cinema when they made this film, but it contains many of the
clichés that often typify this unique subgenre (see David Coleman’s 2012
tome THE BIGFOOT FILMOGRAPHY for a full accounting), from the cute kid
who humanizes the creature to the evil businessman who seeks to exploit
it. What the Ramsays ignore, curiously enough given their status as
scaremeisters, are the more horrific elements of Bigfoot cinema,
providing what is essentially a dumb comedy that outside some gory
killings in the final reel is more in line with HARRY AND THE HENDERSONS
than NIGHT OF THE DEMON.
The film also suffers from Bollywood movie conventions,
such as the distracting song and dance numbers--complete with gaudy
outfits and synthesizer flavored music redolent of the previous
decade--and a vastly inflated 2 hour-plus running time, with too many
superfluous subplots cluttering an already scatterbrained film.
There are some endearing elements, such as the
jaw-dropping “Yeti I love you” music number, crooned by the little girl
protagonist early on and later reprised by a bunch of kids. The yeti
itself (listed in the opening credits as “Mighty Himalayan Man”) is a
sublimely ridiculous creation with webbed hands and odd, vaguely tribal
markings on its face. Listen also for snatches of various well known
movie scores on the soundtrack, including STAR WARS, GOLDFINGER and THE
GOOD, THE BAD AND THE UGLY.
Bottom line: sporadically enjoyable nonsense for
b-movie fans with time on their hands, but those wanting a real
Bigfoot movie are advised to look elsewhere.
AJOOBA KUDRAT KAA (THE MAGNIFICENT GUARDIAN)
Directors: Shyam Ramsay, Tulsi Ramsay
Producer: Shaikh Mohammed Shakeel
Screenplay: Geetanjali Singh, Salim Haider
Cinematography: Gangu Ramsay
Editing: Keshav Hirani
Cast: Shagufta Ali, Beena Banerjee, Hermant Birje, Anil Dhawan, Manik
Irani, Goga Kapoor, Huma Khan, Raj Kishore, Kohli, Manjeet Kullar,
Johnny Lever, Mac Mohan, Deepak Parashar, Randhir Singh