Wednesday 4 June 2008

Nayak (The Hero) [1966]

One of the very few movies to accurately and incisively bring forth the part of a movie superstar that remains in the dark vis-à-vis the viewers’ perception of the star, Nayak (literally The Hero) also happens to be one of the finest as also one of the most psychologically stimulating of Ray’s efforts. The movie follows a movie superstar’s journey from Calcutta to Delhi, by train, to collect a prestigious award. But that’s only the short of it. The complex mindset of the “hero”, with all his insecurities, cockiness, male bravado, guilt (for having dumped his mentor and his love for theatre for money and fame in the sinful tinsel-town), and all the excess baggage that come with stardom, along with the age old conflict between theatre and cinema, is presented as well as only Ray could. Uttam Kumar, who knew a thing or two about superstardom, put in arguably the best performance of his illustrious career, as the multi-layered, complex movie hero – Arindam Mukherjee. Sharmila Tagore, too, shone wonderfully as the enigmatic and beautiful journalist and Arindam's reluctant co-passenger, Aditi, who detests the star, respects the actor and gets to even like and empathise with the person forever hidden from the masses behind his dark sunglasses.

Note: My recent review of Nayak can be found here.


Director: Satyajit Ray
Genre: Drama/Psychological Drama/Road Movie/Romantic Drama/Showbiz Drama
Language: Bengali
Country: India


Sthito said...

Truly, a masterpiece.Period.

Shubhajit said...

I second that.

dreamer said...

Ray at its best. Its a pity we had only one other Uttam Kumar film by Ray(Chiriakhana)

Shubhajit said...

@dreamer - i agree with you. More so because Chiriakhana was undoubtedly one of Ray's lesser efforts. To me Ray made only one movie with Uttam Kumar.