Tuesday, 4 January 2011
Arekti Premer Galpo (Just Another Love Story) 
Kaushik Ganguly’s Arekti Premer Galpo had stirred up a fair amount of controversy prior to its release because of its subject matter. Though a lot of people might have watched it more out of curiosity, I was genuinely surprised as it has turned out to be a brilliant film. And with acclaimed Bengali auteur Rituparno Ghosh making his debut as an actor, it wasn’t surprising to note a fair bit of his touch (the fact that he served as the film’s “creative director” confirmed my suspicions). The film has two parallel storylines. In one, a gay filmmaker Abhiroop Sen, known as much for his films as he is for his outrageous dressing style, and in an emotionally charged but clandestine relationship with his married DOP, is making a reveal-all documentary on Chapal Bhaduri (who has starred as himself), the first openly gay and cross-dressing theatre (“jatra”) actor of Bengal. The second, a film within a film of sorts, is a fictionalization of Chapal’s past life. In an interesting decision by the director, most of the actors have done dual roles. Rituparno Ghosh as the filmmaker and as Chapal’s younger persona, has given powerhouse performances in each of the roles. Even Indraneil Sengupta, as the gay lover in both the storylines, is excellent. The film also boasts of a string of wonderful turns by Churni Ganguly, Jishu Sengupta and Raima Sen in various roles in both the stories. The film has been enormously aided by exceptional cinematography, lilting background score and a terrific script. Sensitive, restrained, mesmerizing, and emotionally captivating, the film is worth savouring, and by the time it ends, the "love stories" remain anything but “just another”.
Director: Kaushik Ganguly
Genre: Drama/Psychological Drama/Romance/Biopic/Showbiz Drama