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In Search of Famine (1981)

Akaler Sandhane (original title)
A film crew comes to a village to make a film about a famine, which killed five million Bengalees in 1943.

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6 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Satya Banerjee
Radhamohan Bhattacharya ...
Teacher
Dhritiman Chatterjee ...
Movie Director
Reba Roy Chowdhury
Dipankar Dey
Sreela Majumdar ...
Devika Mukherjee
...
Herself
Gita Sen
Rajen Tarafder ...
Haren
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Storyline

7 September, 1980. A film crew comes to a village to make a film about a famine, which killed five million Bengalees in 1943. It was a man made famine, a side- product of the war, and the film crew will create the tragedy of those millions who died of starvation. The film documents the convivial life among the film crew and the hazards, problems and tension of film making on location. The actors live a double life, and the villagers, both simple and not-so-simple folk watch their work with wonder and suspicion. But as the film progresses, the recreated past begins to confront the present. The uneasy coexistence of 1943 and 1980 reveals bizarre connection, involving a village woman whose visions add a further dimension of time-that of future. A disturbing situation, indeed, for the "famine-seekers"! Written by Swarup Basak

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Release Date:

February 1981 (West Germany)  »

Also Known As:

In Search of Famine  »

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User Reviews

 
A film about making a film on famine.
29 January 2007 | by (Philippines) – See all my reviews

'Aakaler Sandhane' (In Search of Famine) to my mind is one of the best films Mrinal Sen ever made. His superb touch, some puckish humour and sense of drama is backed up by some wonderful acting. No wonder this film simply ran away with every award in India and the Silver Bear in Berlin.

The story is about a film company which sets out to make a film on the Great Bengal Famine of 1943. They select a village in rural Bengal for outdoor shooting and start work. The story weaves around the trials of the troupe in the village.

To me, the best part of the film is the way Mrinal Sen interlaces three distinct themes. The first is the superficial story of the film company and the difficulties they face. The second is the class distinctions conservatism and prejudices that permeates village society and the third is a scathing criticism that 50 years after independence, stark poverty still exists and famine still stalks the land.


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