Capital Celluloid 2022 — Day 234: Wed Aug 24

The Home and The World (Ray, 1984): BFI Southbank, NFT3, 8.20pm

This 35mm presentation (also being screened on August 21st) is part of the Satyajit Ray season at BFI Southbank (details here).

BFI review:
Ray turned to the work of Rabindranath Tagore one last time for this stately romantic drama, which could be read as a late-period companion piece to Charulata. The tension inherent in the film’s title finds expression in the relationship between the thoughtfully reserved Nikhil (Victor Banerjee) and his wife Bimala (Swatilekha Sengupta), whom he encourages to broaden her cultural and political horizons. His friend Sandip (Soumitra Chatterjee) is a charismatic nationalist into whose seductive orbit Bimala is steadily drawn. The central love triangle is the vehicle for Ray to explore the complexities of early-20th century history, forging a microcosm of India’s relationship with the west in the years following the Partition of Bengal. If the film’s political specificity can sometimes feel elusive, there are no such obstacles to embracing its high tragedy, or the ravishing textures of Soumendu Roy’s colour photography. Despite the similarities, shorn of the earlier film’s lyricism, The Home and the World is a much darker, psychologically impermeable work than Charulata, and perhaps the greatest of Ray’s later years.
Matthew Thrift

Here (and above) is the trailer.

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