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Pather Panchali (1955)

Not Rated | | Drama | 22 September 1958 (USA)
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Impoverished priest Harihar Ray, dreaming of a better life for himself and his family, leaves his rural Bengal village in search of work.



(novel), (screenplay)
Top Rated Indian Movies #11 | Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 8 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »



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Complete credited cast:
Kanu Bannerjee ...
Harihar Ray (as Kanu Bandyopadhyay)
Sarbojaya Ray (as Karuna Bandopadhyay)
Chunibala Devi ...
Durga (as Uma Dasgupta)
Apu Ray (as Subir Bandopadhyay)
Runki Banerjee ...
Little Durga (as Runki Bandopadhyay)
Reba Devi ...
Seja Thakrun
Aparna Devi ...
Nilmoni's wife
Tulsi Chakraborty ...
Prasanna, school teacher
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Haren Banerjee ...
Chinibas, Sweet-seller (as Haren Bandyopadhyay)
Rampada Das
Nibhanani Devi ...
Dasi Thakurun
Rama Gangopadhaya ...
Ranu Mookerjee
Roma Ganguli ...
Roma (as Rama Gangopadhyay)
Binoy Mukherjee ...
Baidyanath Majumdar (as Binoy Mukhopadhyay)


The story of a young boy, Apu, and life in his small Indian village. His parents are quite poor - his father Harihar, a writer and poet, gave away the family's fruit orchard to settle his brother's debts. His sister Durga and an old aunt also still lives with them. His mother Sarbojaya bears the brunt of the family's situation. She scrapes by and sells her personal possessions to put food on the table and has to bear the taunts of her neighbors as Durga is always stealing fruit from their orchard. Things get worse when Harihar disappears for five months and Durga falls ill. Even after Harihar returns, the family is left with few alternatives. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis




Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

22 September 1958 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Pather Panchali  »

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Technical Specs


| (within Bengal)

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?


Oddly enough, the films premiere actually took place at New York's Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) on May 3, 1955 - in conjunction with the museum's "Textiles and Ornamental Arts of India" exhibition. It was then released later that same year in Calcutta, India. It was not released to a wide audience in the USA, until three years later, on September 22, 1958. See more »


Although the film is set in early 20th Century rural India (a time in which public health campaigns presumably did not exist), when Apu and Durga are shown hiding in the fields waiting to catch a glimpse of the train, a vaccination mark is clearly visible on the right arm of Uma Das Gupta, who portrays Durga. See more »


Durga: Holy pond and flower garland, who worships here in the noonday sun? It is I, Leelavati, sister of my brothers. May my sons be numberless, and may I die by the holy Ganges. Mother Goddess, counsel me. I know not how to pray. Grant me this blessing.
See more »


Referenced in Loknayok Kangal Harinath (2011) See more »


It's A Long Way to Tipperary
Written by Jack Judge and Harry Williams
Played by the band
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User Reviews

Pather Pachali
23 June 2005 | by See all my reviews

This is a tour de force around a family's quest for that better future amidst sheer poverty. The film's success is not limited only to realistic depiction of human condition in early 20th century Bengal, but it brings up the triumph of human spirit, love and affection in spite of utter struggle in the most poignant way that one may think. Anybody remotely connected with movie making should also watch APARAJITO AND APUR SANSAR, to complete the experience, and off course to understand the art and craft of cinematic expression from the Maestro. No doubt it ranks in top 100 movie list from Time magazine, not to speak of almost all Indian publications connected with films rate this one as THE MOVIE.

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