Archive for the ‘Sandhya Roy’ Category


PIPASA was based on a story by Banophool. The film was directed by Tarun Mazumdar, music by Hemant Kumarand featured Sandhya Roy, Basant Choudhury, Anup Kumar, Pahari Sanyal, Anuva Gupta , Bhanu Bandopadhyay and others.

It is a tale of struggle at reformation for a courtesan (Sandhya Roy), Roshan Bai, when she gets enchanted with a scholarly Brahmin man (Basant Choudhury). The film outlines a new dimension of the courtesan with a golden heart (in contrast to Chandramukhi in Sarat Chaterji’s Devdas). While ‘All is fair in Love and Air’ may have been the guiding proinciple for cupid to bloom, that an inevitable fued would result when skeletons tumble out of closet, is a foregone conclusion. The two main actors, Sandhya Roy and Basant Choudhury, perform wonderfully in their roles. Anup Kumar is chilling in a negative character. The rest of the supporting cast, Pahari Sanyal and Bhanau Bandopadhyay perform remarkably well, especially Bhanu for some of the lighter moments of the film. The songs have a classical strain and a Rabindrasangeet ‘alok er jhorna dharey duliye dao…’ have been featured in the film.

Watching the film four decades later, one feels that the grip of prevalent orthodoxy in those times in society hindred the chances of a fallen woman to gain acceptance in a so called respectable league. While directors like V. Shantaram were making films on reforming criminals (Do Ankhen Barah Haath) , such exercises on disreputable woman was being ignored.

Rating: 3 out of 5


AHWAN narrates the tale of one Bimol (Anil Chaterjee) who returns to his native village after several years. He had left his village to pursue higher education in Kolkata.

After his initial comeback,  he began dividing his time between his village and Kolkata where he worked. He befriends an elderly Muslim lady in the village who is alone and has no one to look after her. A strong bond develops between her and Bimol. A touching scene is when she arrives to see an ailing Bimol after bathing herself in ‘Gangajaal’ (water of river Ganga) on a cold wintry night because being a Muslim she wasn’t encouraged inside homes of orthodox Hindu families.

There is also a triangular romantic angle where Bimol is caught between an urbane lady (Lily Chakraborty) and the rural belle (Sandhya Roy). Watch the film to find out what happens…

The film is directed by Arabinda Mukhopadhyay and based on a powerful story of Hindu Muslim amity and differences by Bhibuti Bhushan Bandopadhyay. The supporting cast includes Premanshu Bose, Anoop Kumar and others.

Rating: 3.7 out of 5


“baare baare ami pother taanei
poth ke korechhi ghor
taai ami jajabor …”

PALATAK is directed by Jatrik based on a story by Manoj Basu. The film narrates the tale of a man (Anup Kumar in a brilliant performance) bitten by wanderlust. Inspite of the fact that he hailed from a rich Zamindari family and could have lived in comfort, his wanderlust took him to newer and different places where he encountered new people and mingled with their lives. He gets married to a woman (Sandhya Roy) and returns home to his family with his wife. Could conjugal life curb his passion for travelling? The film could have been edited for greater effect.

List of memorable songs from the film:

  1. Mon je amar kemon kemon kore …
  2. Jibon pur er pathik re bhai …
  3. Krishna kalo aadhar kalo …
  4. Aha re bidhi go tor leela bhoja daay …

The supporting cast includes Asit Baran, Bharati Devi, Jahar Ganguly, Jahar Ray, Robi Ghosh, Anuva Gupta, Ruma Guha Thakurtha and others. The film is produced by V. Shantaram.

Rating: 3.8 out of 5


Satyajit Ray’s ‘Asoni Sonket’ (1973) depicts life in a village with the specter of famine looming large. When rice gets scarce, people stoop to the level of consuming snails in order to survive…the narrative progresses through Soumitro Chaterji, the lone Brahman in the village. He is a teacher, physician and priest – an all-in-one for the poor villagers who address him affectionately as Panditji. This languid paced color film by master filmmaker Satyajit Ray shows rural life and the frailties of human beings, especially of women who even becomes willing to trade flesh for a few morsel of rice for the family. It was based on a story by famed writer Bhibuti Bhusan Bandopadhyay.


In Asoni Sanket, Ray uses symbolism in some sequences (butterflies fluttering etc …) that were completely lost on me. I also found echo/references to the works of Mrinal Sen in the thematic sameness with ‘Baisey Shravan’ (1959), or the use of documentary footage and stills as in Sen’s ‘Calcutta Seventy-One’ (1972).  The film ends with a message on the screen that “during the famine of 1943, five million people just collapsed and died…it was mostly man made…the times were truly terrifying….”

Soumitro Chaterji in the pivotal role acts competently. The other central performers were Bobita and Sandhya Roy.

Some of the sequences are quite stark. The sequence of the girl dying towards the end is conveyed using a freeze frame and a close up of her eyes. Inspite of the bleakness of the subject, the film ends on an optimistic note with the wife of Soumitro announcing the arrival of their child. The rural backdrop has been evoked with good photography.

Writing in the book MANIK AND I (Penguin India, Page 360) Ray’s wife Bijaya Ray mentions that “While Manik was shooting Asani Sanket, Babu(Sandip Ray) had recoreded the filming in his 16mm camera and turned it into a film called THE MAKING OF ASONI SANKET. It was a well-made film, and will have historic value one day.”

ASANI SANKET won the Golden Bear for Best Picture at the Berlin Film Festival in 1973.


 Rating: 3 out of 5