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The Adversary (1970)
"Pratidwandi" (original title)

 |  Drama  |  27 October 1970 (India)
8.0
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Ratings: 8.0/10 from 846 users  
Reviews: 7 user | 13 critic

A young college graduate is struggling to find a job. He lives in a flat with his younger, employed sister, revolutionary brother and widowed mother. The strain of the situation ultimately causes him to hallucinate.

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Dhritiman Chatterjee ...
Siddhartha Chaudhuri (as Dhritiman Chattopadhyay)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Asgar Ali
Arabinda Banerjee
Soumitra Banerjee
Amar Bardhan
Gaja Basu ...
(as Gaja Bose)
Krishna Bose ...
Sutapa
Biplab Chakraborty
Mihir Chakravarti
Anindita Chatterjee
Biplab Chatterjee
Chittaranjan Chatterjee
Dibyendu Chatterjee
Kalyan Chatterjee ...
Shiben (as Kalyan Chattopadhyay)
Mamata Chatterjee ...
Sanyal's wife
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Storyline

A young man, newly graduated from college is unable to find meaningful employment. He lives in a crowded apartment with his widowed mother, a revolutionary brother and a younger, well-employed sister. Family frictions and his continuing unsuccessful quest for a job place an unbearable strain on him causing him to hallucinate. The pressure, magnified by the tense and impersonal setting of Calcutta, builds to a devastating conclusion. Hindu Neorealism? Written by Mr Bongo

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Genres:

Drama

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Release Date:

27 October 1970 (India)  »

Also Known As:

Siddharta and the City  »

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Trivia

One of the films of the Calcutta Trilogy, the others being Company Limited (1971) and The Middleman (1976). See more »

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User Reviews

 
The best from Ray
27 December 2011 | by (India) – See all my reviews

Pratidwandi is one of my favourite films of Satyajit Ray. In-fact, I'll place it above Apu trilogy and Charulata. This is political drama at its best. Set in the age of hippies, communism and newly born Naxalism, when Woodstock and the Vietnam war were fresh, the film reflects the bitterness and anger of an intelligent, sensitive young man engaged in the Herculean task of finding a job. This is one film that rightly depicts the Calcutta of the late sixties.

It was a difficult period for India and West Bengal. Corruption was rampant. Unemployment raged the youth of India. I absolutely loved the flashbacks and the way X-ray digressions have been employed by Ray. The ending scene was particularly marvellous, where the protagonist Siddharth, chooses ideology over helplessness. No wonder the inspiring communist of Hazaron Khwashein Aisi is also named Siddharth.

The film is stylistically experimental for Ray, featuring techniques inspired by the French New Wave, such as jump-cuts, edgy framing, dream sequences, and sexual metaphors. Some of the experimental techniques which the film pioneered include photo-negative flashbacks and X-ray digressions. There are a number of dream sequences which reminded me of Bergman's Wild Strawberries.


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