• A step down from the Apu trilogy and The Music Room but still true to form for Ray’s oeuvre
  • Observationally nuanced and best appreciated and recognized Ray’s already established great strand of work in the neorealist tradition
  • Urban and modern- some western influence with the coworker who gets her sunglasses, lipstick
  • Not nihilistic but there’s a tragedy and hardship here—small moments of playfulness between Anil Chatterjee and Madhabi Mukherjee add a great deal
  • Very close-up heavy which benefits (and benefits from) Madhabi Mukherjee who would go on to star in the superior work Charulata the following year. She’s a fantastic actress
  • Some great singular cinematic moments- a dolly in on the father’s face resulting in a close-up when he finds out his son’s wife has a job. A great shot—another sequence is a montage the working women walking from their office out into the city to canvass (sell) to the glorious sitar score by Ray himself
  • Most of the rest of the great moments are close-ups of Mukherjee—the pride of her getting her first paycheck, which quickly turns into a more ambiguous concern, her “my work is faultless” line which I just ate up, she has another close-up when she finds out her husband has been fired- sublime acting
  • Ray has a great shot of her behind bars when she tells her to quit
  • It’s a normal family (neorealism) and in Ray’s eyes is an exceptional one and treats it as such
  • Great shot of Chatterjee behind the mosquito netting in despair
  • Goes handheld to show extreme emotion—nervousness on her first sales canvassing and then when she gets worked up after quitting her job
  • The ending is great- “such a big city” line and then walking into a sea of people
  • Recommend