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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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February 1981 (West Germany)  »

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In Search of Famine  »

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Fascinating portrayal of a film crew coming into an area...
11 January 2010 | by (Evansville, Indiana USA) – See all my reviews

1st watched 12/27/2009 – 8 out of 10(Dir-Mrinal Sen) Fascinating portrayal of a film crew coming into an area to film a movie about a famine 40 years earlier in the same area and disrupting the villages around them. This movie is an obvious documentary but there is so much drama behind the scenes that this becomes a story all to it's own. The crew enters the area with good intentions of portraying the suffering that occurred as a reminder and a historical recreation of the time. At first the villagers welcome this mostly, but they obviously expect more from these new folk around them as they become a separate community in the area with big city needs. They hire locals to work with them to hopefully make up for their disruptions but this eventually backfires. The movie being made loses a main star in the production and they start trying to get local talent to play the part of a prostitute but this creates a lot of controversy in the villages and they start turning against them. This is a one of a kind movie that makes you think about our insistence on being entertained despite the circumstances. The movie community actually starts creating it's own famine in the surrounding areas by absorbing their goods – which is exactly opposite of their intention. The movie portrays the film crew as understanding and willing to make changes based on the locals reactions(unlike what American filmmakers might be like), so they definitely are not the enemy just absorbed in the situation. The movie should be a requirement for film schools but because it's made in a third world country and mostly unknown it probably wont. Watch it, you'll see what I mean!!


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