Top 10 Bengali Movies ..

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When I decided to list 10 best Bengali films ever made, I realized it wasn’t going to be as easy as I initially thought. The list below features a few that would be unanimous choices and also a few that just maybe I like. However, stories behind these films will tell you something, and I am sure you will feel the same once watched.

1.Pather Panchali (1955)Apu and Durga

Director: Satyajit Ray

Writer: Bibhutibhushan Bandyopadhyay (novel), Satyajit Ray (screenplay)

Stars: Kanu Bannerjee, Karuna Bannerjee, Chunibala Devi

The first film of the Apu trilogy, this one depicts the early life of Apu and his family. Apu, is born to a poor Brahmin family in a remote  village called Nischintipur in Bengal. The father, a priest, cannot earn enough to keep his family going. Apu’s sister, Durga, is forever stealing guavas from the neighbor’s garden and all these add to the daily struggles of the mother’s life. And all this portrayed so superbly by Oscar winning director Satyajit Ray.

Apur Sansar

2. Apur Sansar (1959) 

Director: Satyajit Ray

Writer: Bibhutibhushan Bandyopadhyay (original story “Aparajito”), Satyajit Ray (screenplay)

Stars: Soumitra Chatterjee Sharmila Tagore,Alok Chakravarty.

Life struggle continues for Apu who is now a young man but jobless, dreaming of a future as a writer. He fails to continue his higher studies due to poverty, and tries to make a living out of tuition. An old college friend Phulu, takes him to a village to attend a wedding where life takes a serious turn for Apu.

3. Goopy Gyne Bagha Byne (1969)  

Gupi Gyen Baga BayenDirector: Satyajit Ray

Writer:   Upendra Kishore Raychowdhuri

Stars:  Tapan Chatterjee,Robi Ghosh and Ajoy Banerjee

Goopi and Bagha are two characters who meet in a jungle being banished by the King of their village. They by chance meet the King of Ghosts and he gives them three boons for their simplicity and innocence. Rest of the story revolves around how they use those boons for the betterment of Shundi Kingdom. Even though this is mostly touted as a children’s film, it without doubt features in every adult’s favorite list.

Hirk Rajar desh4.Heerak Rajar Deshe (1980)        

Director: Satyajit Ray

Writers: Satyajit Ray (story), Satyajit Ray

Stars: Soumitra Chatterjee,Utpal Dutt,Robi Ghosh

The musician duo of Goopi Gayaen and Bagha Bayaen make a comeback in this sequel, where they are invited to the court of the Heerok Raja (Diamond King), for their musical skills. They have to perform at the kingdom’s Jubilee Celebrations. But coming to the kingdom, they use their natural goodness and curiosity to find out that all is not well in the kingdom. There is exploitation of poor farmers and diamond-miners.

5. Aranyer Din Ratri (1970)

Aranyer Din RatriDirector: Satyajit Ray

Writers: Sunil Gangopadhyay (original story), Satyajit Ray (screenplay)

Stars:  Sharmila Tagore, Kaberi Bose , Rabi Ghosh , Soumitrya Chatterjee and Simi Garewal

A group of four middle class workers take the week off to have a holiday. When they get to the forest, they meet up with another group and spend their time flirting with women.

teen-kanya-april-23

6. Teen Kanya (1961)

Director:  Satyajit Ray

Writers:  Rabindranath Tagore (stories)

Satyajit Ray:  (screenplay)

Stars: Anil Chatterjee ,Chandana Banerjee,Nripati Chatterjee

The story of three women is  nicely portrayed, Nanda a man form Kolkata was posted as postmaster in malaria infested village where Ratan a small Orphan looks after him. The second story is about a student, Amulya, who returns to his village after finishing his exams.

7.  Dadar Kirti (1980)

Director: Tarun Majumdar

Writers: Saradindu Bandopaddhyay (original story), Tarun Majumdar

Stars:   Tapas Pal, Ayan Banerjee  and Mahua Roy Chowdhury

A typical Bengali love story with elements like misunderstanding and confusion throughout, that gets sorted out at the end. Nivaran Chatterjee lives a wealthy lifestyle in a small town along with his wife, and three sons. The story is of  Kedar ,Amar , and their two lady loves Beeni and Saraswati .

ogo Badhu Sundari

8.Ogo Bodhu Shundari (1981)

Director: Salil Dutta

Writers: Kamal Bansal

Bibhuti Mukherjee (dialogue)

Stars: Uttam Kumar,Moushumi Chatterjee,Sumitra Mukherjee and Ranjeet mallik

* Uttam Kumar died during the filming.

Gagan (Uttam Kumar) does not like to socialize while his wife Chitra (Sumitra Mukherjee) loves attending parties. One day Chitra’s friend Lola invites her to a party. In the meanwhile, the  Kolkata Book Fair takes off and Gagan wants to go. Savitri (Moushumi Chatterjee) lived with her uncle from an early age. One day her uncle sold her for some money from where Savitri escaped and took shelter in Gagan’s house. When Gagan’s wife sees Savitri in Gagan’s reading room, she goes to her grandfather’s house in a fit of rage. Gagan and Abalakanta Santosh Dutta help Savitri learn etiquette and the ways of genteel society.

9. Neel Akasher Neechey (1959)NeelAkash_20130521

Director: Mrinal Sen

Writer: Mahadevi Verma, Mrinal Sen (Screen Play)

Stars: Bikas Roy, Kali Banerjee,Manju Dey

 

10.  Nobel Thief (2011)Mithun-Chakraborty-NOBEL-CHOR

Director: Suman Ghosh

writer :Suman Ghosh

Stars :  Mithun Chakraborty,Soma Chakraborty and Saswata Chatterjee

The Nobel Medal of kabi Guru  Rabindra Nath Tagore was stolen in 2004 and it was never found. This film is a fictional account of what might have happened to the medal. A poor farmer accidentally finds the medal lying outside his house. He embarks on a journey to return back the medal to the government but is later dragged in to selling it with the help of his friend in Kolkatta city.

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2 thoughts on “Top 10 Bengali Movies ..

  1. without Mr Rithik Ghatak, top 10 list is incomplete.

  2. Sandeep Nandi says:

    The list quite rightly has six movies of the legendary Satyajit Ray! Maybe there should be two top 10 lists – one with Satyajit Ray movies and the other without it. However I do think Satyajit Ray’s “Agantuk” should have found some place in that list. It was his last film and undoubtedly one of his best!



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