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Charulata– 1964 Satyajit Ray
- Among Satyajit Ray’s best work- a meditation on passions, politics, romance and writing
- More leisurely paced than most of Ray’s work
- Brilliant shot of camera attached to a swing to capture Madhabi Mukherjee’s face- this would be picked up by others including Truffaut and wes Anderson (Budapest)
- The three leads are all brilliant but Madhabi Mukherjee in particular gives a spectacular performance- there’s countless examples but there’s a great moment when she realizes that she loves her cousin-in-law and she is in trouble. Her husband has a similar moment when he realizes that and the cousin-in-law’s has a moment of clarity surrounding his love of charulata as well
- Unrealized love
- The finale is justifiably famous. It’s a series of freeze frames of open hands. It’s up there with (and of course echoes the 400 blows.
- Wonderful sequences of the way Ray shoots charulata eavesdropping on her husband telling her crush to get married.
- The husband is annoying sensible and virtuous- the side story of the betrayal of money on the husband makes it harder on charulata and cousin-in-law
- A long gorgeous tracking shot going up from the ground to charulata’s unblinking eye which turns into a long dissolve montage mix of her getting ideas to write her great article
- The film doesn’t have the devastating form and symmetry of the music room
- Ray does his own music—which is wonderful and re-used in Darjeeling limited
- The subtle tracking shots of charulata walking around her house is so nuanced in the editing- it’s almost like a bresson film
- Mindless card game for 5 minutes to show her life and boredom— she’s a prisoner in her chic house with elegant wall-paper and décor- even has her opera glasses to look out
- Must-See film- top 5 of the year quality after one viewing