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The Hidden Fortress

at long last - Premiere!


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This is so exciting!!!!


I want to know what they say - maybe the ducky will give us a roundup later - shame it's too small to read.

I love that there is an image from the Frida movie in the double page spread :oh: But it's not as beautiful as our girl in those other pics.


Very :cool:


This reminds me - I have some scanning of my own to do still (then it really will be Musings of Deepanjana)

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Excellent! And ditto on the wanting to read the article. The pix are great though....I love the one of the 2 of them smiling merrily while appearing to be in jail! :roflmao:

It's like watching an unfamilair movie on tv in another language without subtitles.

My favorite pic is the one at the bottom. She looks like she is telling them what's what! :chacha:

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ah the tales i have from that day... :roll::lol: sadly don't have time to get into that now. in-laws in the other room and i have a flight to catch in four hours for which i desperately need to pack. :lol: going to mum's for the weekend. :yes:


so yes, now let's see what's up there. :crit:


the one with the frida pic is an interview with one of the greatest modern bengali authors (known for his controversial outspoken-ness) sunil gangopadhyay and me. For you guys' information, Jyotirindranath is the husband of my character (Kadambari Devi) in the film and Gyanadanandini was his sister in-law. Salman Khan is a huge movie star here rumoured to have beaten up his ex-girlfriends, including Aishwarya Rai.




Sunil Gangopadhyay, who has written extensively on the relationship between Kadambari Devi and Tagore in Prothom Alo, and Deepanjana Pal, who plays Kadambari Devi in Chirosakha Hé, talk to Priyanka Dasgupta on whether it’s difficult in India to spell out the truth while making films on icons


Sunil Gangopadhyay

At the outset, let me say that even if there was much more than a platonic relationship between Kadambari Devi and Rabindranath Tagore, there is no such proof to that effect. Hence, ethically it’s not possible for anyone to make such suggestions in a film based on their lives.

India thrives on hypocrisy. Tagore is an icon and anything written that might portray him in a different light could create a major problem. People will bring the roof down thinking that such attempts are made to disrespect the icon. Under such circumstances, directors don’t have the courage to toe a different line.

I haven’t watched Chirosakha Hé yet. I was not keeping well on Wednesday evening and hence, couldn’t make it to the auditorium. Personally speaking, I don’t see any wrong if Tagore had a physical relationship with Kadambari Devi. I wouldn’t judge him if he had indeed indulged in that. But I also understand the problems of the director making such suggestions. People around are hypocritical enough not to accept anything of that nature. A film made on icons has always generated controversy for the simple reason that there is a section of the masses who feel that exploring the private emotions of the great masters could backfire.

I feel in a film on Kadambari Devi, it is important to show how Gyanadanandini’s presence could have altered the emotional balance in the relationship between Jyotirindranath and Kadambari Devi. Gyanadanandini (the wife of Satyendranath Tagore) was quite an over-bearing personality. During those days, she had alone travelled all the way to London. She would order people around. When Jyotirindranath bought the steamer, he entrusted Gyanadanandini and not wife Kadambari with the responsibility of getting its interior decoration done. Of course, this could have added to Kadambari’s grief when she waited endlessly for Jyotirindranath to return with the steamer. Finally when she was pushed to the brink of endless waiting, Kadambari committed suicide. At the time of Kadambari’s death, Mrinalini Devi (Tagore’s wife) was hardly in the limelight.

I would presume that creative freedom of a director in the Indian context is still very limited. Abroad, people can make a film like Frida that’s a true portrayal of the life of a Mexican artist. In 2002, when Julie Taymor directed this biographical movie about Kahlo Frida starring Salma Hayek, the director didn’t need to succumb to any fears. But things are different in India. Here people are trying to create so much of an issue over a bridge made by monkeys! Don’t we all know that Ram is a character from a mythology? For God’s sake, if monkeys knew the use of the thumb, why would they remain monkeys? In a country where monkeys building or not building a bridge becomes a national issue, what do you expect? Can a director work where her mind is without fear?


Deepanjana Pal

Idon’t quite agree that the film required to feature Gyanadanandini. She hardly ever stayed in Jorasanko and it’s unlikely that the paths of Gyanadanandini and Kadambari Devi would cross. As far as the equation between Gyanadanandini and Jyotirindranath is concerned, it’s still in the realm of hypothesis. Mentioning that is as good as saying that Salman Khan had beaten up Aishwarya. Gyanadanandini was a firebrand lady with modern ideas. Both she and Kadambari were charismatic. But, there was a fundamental difference between the two. While Gyanadanandini did all the public stuff, Kadambari stayed away from it. She was well-read and could happily interact with the elite intellectuals of the era. What the director thinks about the platonic relationship between Kadambari Devi and Tagore might not be what many others, including me, believe. Of course, the film shows that the relationship between Tagore and Kadambari Devi was threatening to bubble over the line. It also comes across through the conversations between Jyotirindranath and Tagore. Had I directed this film, it would’ve been a different project. I wouldn’t like to make any sweeping statements on whether Indians don’t have the guts to make films on icons that reveal the truth. A film like Black Friday got made in India. I wouldn’t know whether Bengalis can accept a film that portrays an icon in a new light. But I wouldn’t put the blame squarely only on censorship issues. No director has ever even attempted a film like Frida in India. Every system has it pros and cons. Even the system in which Frida was made also has its critiques. Hence, it’s too early to pre-empt whether our directors will have the freedom to make such a film in India. "

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the one with the still shot from the film is a review:



Of love, longing and loss



Film: Chirosakha Hé ½ Cast: Soumitra Chatterjee, Roopa Ganguly, Sreelekha Mukherjee, Kharaj Mukherjee, Sayandip Bhattacharya, Deepanjana Pal, Badsha Maitra and Tom Alter Director: Bandana Mukhopadhyay

The most difficult part about making a film on the life of an icon is that both the film-maker and the members of the audience suffer from a nagging fear of whether the movie might end up making them disrespect their role model. Chirosakha Hé , thankfully enough, steers clear off any such designs. The sensitivity of the relationship between Tagore and his muse, Kadambari Devi, is handled with kid gloves, so much so that the film almost smells of an antiseptic coating.

In the land of the Bard’s worshippers, Bandana’s film will surely dispel the fears of all those cynics who apprehend that she is trying to add masala to a relation that has never been defined and till date been left largely to conjecture. The strength of the screenplay lies in conveying the loneliness of a woman as talented as Kadambari who is trapped in an affectionless and futile marriage. Instead of suggesting that Tagore’s marriage could be a plausible reason for Kadmabari’s suicidal act, the film highlights how she gets affected with the rumours of her husband’s alleged affair with a theatre actor and her pangs of agony for not being able to mother a child. The final nail in the coffin is the acute sense of futility when her husband doesn’t accept her offer to help him in his theatre-related activities and Tagore tells her that he needs her to give him the push for a short period of time before he gets stable enough to take flight on his own.

If the intention of the film was to show the void in Kadambari’s life, it surely comes across as a poignant period piece. But for the audience, that alone can’t be reason enough to connect with a film. Of recent times, a number of period films have been made and of course, on a much higher budget. Sadly speaking, almost every frame of the film seems to remind that the movie was a labour of love made on a shoe-string budget. From the costumes to the décor — the look of the film could have done away with its mediocrity. Even the wigs seemed too messy to merit a better description. Of course, there was a huge advantage in shooting in real locations. Wish the film had matched up to production standards of recent period films like

Gandhi my father.

The camerawork by Shakti Bannerji could have been of a much higher order. A film on the poet and his muse surely could have done with more artistic and aesthetically enriching frames of Kadambari and Tagore dipping their feet in a waterfall. Even continuous backward and forward movement in time seemed a bit jarring for the sake of continuity.

As for the actors, Tom Alter was the most convincing in the role of Dr Smith. Roopa Ganguly too did a decent job. Bandana’s daughter — Deepanjana — has tried to the best of her ability to do justice to the emotional layers in Kadambari’s character. Sayandip, as Tagore, had a tough job in his debut role. Since he doesn’t harbour wishes of continuing with his acting career in future, it’s futile to say that he has scope for a more matured second outing. Badsha Maitra, in the role of Jyotirindranath, oscillated between being partly at ease and partly too melodramatic in the role of a husband who is coming to terms with a loss. Alternatively speaking, Bandana was so careful not to antagonise her detractors that her script didn’t allow much room for Badsha to show why he had become so aloof to a wife like Kadambari.

Kadambari, for reasons best known to Bandana, has remained more of a martyr — a woman, ‘who loved not wisely but too well’. Somewhere a little less of caution could have added more dramatic layerings and a flesh and blood feel to her character.

Check out


• Bappi Lahiri’s attempt at setting Tagore songs to his tune


•Srikanto Acharya and Lopamudra Mitra’s rendition of those numbers


•Real-life location shoots at Jorasanko Thakurbari


• Trivia about Tagore’s personal life that are punched in the dialogues

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the last one with pics of everyone:


Celebrating Tagoreana


This wasn’t exactly a star-studded premiere that the city has been witness to in the recent past. Considering that this film had touched upon one of the most controversial subjects in recent times, one had hoped that many more members from Kolkata cultural brigade would be present at the first screening of the film. Of course, Madhabi ‘Charulata’ Mukhopadhyay was there to tell viewers to support films that have a strong storyline instead of those that rely only on action. Srikanto Acharya, who had lent his voice to the soundtrack, seemed a trifle upset with the poor audio quality of the auditorium that didn’t do justice to his rendition. We spotted Sarbari Dutta in the crowd. On being asked what she felt about the film, the designer said, “Bandana has handled it with great care. I wouldn’t want to find flaws.” On prodding further, she said she missed out Gyanadanandini in the film. “She was very important in the context of Kadambari and Rabindranath. But I guess, Bandana left that out to avoid controversy.” As for Deepanjana, who played Kadambari, it was a great occasion what with her near and dear ones showering her with praise on how well she had acted in her mother’s directorial venture. “I’m so overwhelmed. My husband is in Mumbai attending the premiere of Loins of Punjab Presents. For one day, we seem like a power couple attending two premieres in two different cities.”


(there were two family friends in the audience who started going on and on about me being their "baby" and all that. they also kept gushing about how remarkable it was for my mother and me to have worked together. it was very embarrassing particularly because it completely robbed me of all credibility as an actress and my mother of her ability to pick out an actress because it just seems like nepotism. grrr... of course, papers being what they are are harping only about the fact that director and actress are related so that it seems like the film was made to be my "vehicle". which is all bollocks but i suspect if i make the mistake of pointing this out, i'll be digging my own grave. hmph.)

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seems one says it maybe goes a bit too far/why it's difficult to do the real thing/go the whole hog, and the other that it doesn't go far enough, and why not do so?.... :dunno: must be a difficult balancing act!


:heart: have fun at Mum's!!!

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voldemoo! :roflmao: i LOVE it. :yes:


mad, i think the point was that some people in the press were hoping for a juicy controversial film whereas my mum, ever the prude, made a film according to her pristine, unsinful beliefs. :lol: my mum honestly doesn't believe there was sexual hanky-panky between tagore and his sister in-law so she says precisely that in the film. which is also wise since there are many moral guardians in our midst. :lol: but having just hinted at the possibility and then said "no cookie" leaves some members of the audience wanting much more, clearly. :wink:

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