Sunday, 17 February 2013
Jadu Bansha 
Directed by former film critic Partha Pratim Choudhury, Jadu Bansha was both a chronicle of its times and a critique of its era. The Naxal revolution in Bengal, which had a strong presence of educated youths, led to not just great political turmoil but also social fallouts in terms of severe disenchantment and disillusionment of a whole generation. Made in a distinctively modernist and experimental style, the film chronicled the angst, frustrations, crises and the oftentimes futile attempts at reconciliation of four young guys who hang out together. The director did a coup of sorts in terms of the cast. Uttam Kumar, the great star-actor, played the role of a mild natured middle-aged man who has failed as a businessman, and gave, what many consider, one of his finest performances laced with restraint, dejection and a tragic end to a tragic life. Sharmila Tagore starred in a cameo as a woman of so-called loose morals who the angriest of the four guys, played by Dhritiman Chatterjee, is in a relationship with. Aparna Sen, too, was part of the cast, and that too in a double role. Finally, Santosh Dutta added some comic flavor, in this otherwise tale of gloom and despair, as a man of means who uses hearing impairment to dodge requests for help. The director used a couple of novel narrative techniques, viz. shifting to quick flashbacks to elucidate certain conversations and plot elements, and using on-screen titles, as opposes to voiceovers, to bring forth the characters’ thought processes. Despite the poor preservation quality, the jarring flow and tad over indulgence, the film was still worth a watch for its formalism and theme.
Director: Partha Pratim Choudhury
Genre: Drama/Urban Drama/Psychological Drama/Experimental Film