The motif of loneliness in the films of Mrinal Sen

Posted: December 2, 2018 in Mrinal Sen

Assessing the various characters that have been seen in the films of Mrinal Sen, one can detect loneliness as a motif in several of his works.
In NEEL AKASER NEECHEY the Chinese hawker lives in an alien society and his attempt to befriend a kindly lady is looked upon with suspicion. In BAISEY SHRAVAN the protagonist (again a hawker – the marginalized trying to eke out a livelihood features in these two early films of MS) after suffering an accident become harsh which arise from a sense of neglect and loneliness.
The loneliness of the widower Bhuvan Shome must have been the reason for the reforming act that the innocent village belle (Suhasini Mulay) suddenly has on him. The character of Simi Garewal lives alone in her flat and the need to fight loneliness must have drawn her towards the political activist. Loneliness, even while living with his entire family, must have driven the Professor to leave for an unknown destination without informing his family in EK DIN ACHANAK.
In KHANDAHAR the unwed Jamini (played by Shabana Azmi) lives alone with her mother away from the humdrum of city life. In ANTAREEN the protagonist made random calls to strangers to reach out for a human touch to escape from her loneliness.

Critics have often overlooked this latent expression in the works of the filmmaker known mostly for his experimentation and hard-hitting political and social films.

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