8.3/10
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The Middleman (1976)

Jana Aranya (original title)
| Drama | March 1979 (USA)
A bright and idealistic young man steels himself for the dog-eat-dog business world, only to flounder in a job market packed with thousands of other hopefuls.

Director:

Writers:

(novel) (as Shankar), (screenplay)
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Cast

Credited cast:
Pradip Mukherjee ...
Somnath (as Pradip Mukhopadhyay)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Rafiq Ahmed ...
(as Dr. Rafiq Ahmed)
S. Bagchi
Ajit Banerjee
Krishna Banerjee
Sachin Banerjee
Samaresh Banerjee
Sudip Banerjee
Satya Bannerjee ...
Somnath's Father
Gita Basu
Arati Bhattacharya ...
Mrs. Ganguli
Sachin Bhattacharya
Umanath Bhattacharya
Jatish Bhora
Rajen Brijnath
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Storyline

After months of unemployment, recent college graduate Somnath enters business as a middleman, but he finds out when success means finding a client's weak spot, the price is more than mere rupees. Written by Erik Gregersen <erik@astro.as.utexas.edu>

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Drama

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Release Date:

March 1979 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Middleman  »

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Trivia

One of the films of the Calcutta Trilogy, the others being The Adversary (1970) and Company Limited (1971). See more »

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User Reviews

 
A fairly disappointing picture from Ray
20 February 2003 | by (Saint Paul, MN) – See all my reviews

It starts out well enough, with a recent college graduate (Pradip Mukherjee) desperate for work. The montage of his looking for work is great, especially a scene where he is interviewed for a job and asked the most irrelevant questions imaginable, including "How much does the moon weigh?" He looks at the interviewer in disbelief. "What does that have to do with the job?" "I'll ask the questions here, son!" After several months of unemployment, he runs into an old friend who sets him up as a "middleman," where he can make a huge profit with very little effort. It's immoral, and Mukherjee can feel his soul slipping away. But he can't quit, because he doesn't want to disappoint his elderly father (Satya Bandyopadhyay, who gives the film's best performance). The main problem with the movie is that it's just too talky, and no one's talking about anything interesting. It wouldn't work if the characters were talking out loud about the moral dilemma; that would make the film too obvious. But they just talk endlessly about how they are going to go about their business and so forth. The movie just drags on forever, and then it throws in this utterly contrived ending. Well, I was almost happy for the contrivance, because, although false, at least it didn't involve endless prattle. It's quite overlong. I miss the economy of his better films. A dud by a master. 6/10.


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