Amar Bhoopali (1951)

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Veteran director V. Shantaram spins this bio-pic about poet and musician Honaji Bala -- best know for popularizing the lavani dance form and for writing the classic raga Ghanashyam sundara shirdhara -- who reached the zenith of his creative powers just as the Maratha empire was collapsing to British invasion forces. The film shows not only Bala's passionate interest in lavani, but also his passionate interest in prostitutes -- particularly a beautiful dancer named Tamasha (Sandhya). As the Pune court bestows Bala an award for his talents, the film shows the Maratha army getting routed by the British onslaught.