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Less obviously a work of humanist realism than the Apu trilogy, Ray's film is nevertheless a carefully nuanced study in religious obsession, with Biswas convinced that his daughter-in-law (Tagore) is in fact the goddess Kali reincarnated. Comparatively baroque and melodramatic in terms of its images and story, it manages to mount a lucid, finally very moving argument against the destructive nature of fanaticism and superstition, with Tagore gradually losing all sense of her own individuality. Without a doubt, it is impressive film making; but whether its very Indian concerns are of widespread interest remains a moot point.

Release details

Duration: 93 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Satyajit Ray
Screenwriter: Satyajit Ray
Cast: Chabi Biswas
Sharmila Tagore
Soumitra Chatterjee
Karuna Bannejee
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