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Katha Sangama (1975)

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Katha Sangama - A must movie to watch to study Puttanna cinema
20 November 2011 | by (Amsterdam, Netherlands) – See all my reviews

Because no one has reviewed this title on IMDb, I thought of writing a review of this masterpiece of Puttana Kanagal.

Puttana Kangal is respected for his master touch of weaving emotions to the mundane story is such richness that allures audiences to accept and empathize with each and every character and story he narrates.

Katha Sangaman is such an example. It was a unique attempt (in 1975) by Puttana to present three contemporary literary stories by young Kannada writers in one film. He structures the movie with an introduction of Kannada Sahitya (literature) and prominent writers through ages. Establishing that – he introduces three author –one by one - of each short story to present the theme of the short film that would unfold. Puttana selects three stories as follows: First is Hangu, it is about a up-right university professor who is in a dilemma when a contractor tries to bribe him to pass his son for attaining a college seat in the face of his sick child who requires immediate medical treatment. The contractor extends all his help to the professor who has no way but to be servile under obligation for the sake of his son's life.

Second is Atithi, it is about a hostel warden lady (B Saroja Devi) who looks at her past while comparing the lives of young girls staying at hostel with hers. As a young independent thinking, liberal girl studying in college Saroja is being wooed by our hero (Kalyan Kumar); but in feminist mood declines the offer, and later in life while serving as a hostel warden – gets aware of her loneliness in her stern disciplinarian outlook as independent feminine.

Third is Munithaayi, it is about a simple villager blind girl (Aarati) who is saved from teasing by a good man (Gangadhar) staying in a nearby village, who later offers to marry her. Aarati's trouble starts when Gangadhar trusts a wayward youth as younger brother to safeguard Aarati when he has gone for work. The wayward youth along with a local goon (Rajnikant) – first, invades the privacy several times of the blind girl by watching her take bath, and later conspires to rape her, and later blackmail her. In final distress Aarati informs Gangadhar – who forgives her, as it was none of her fault. The goons run away from the village.

Each of the three stories offers a moral question to the audience – bribery, feminism and exploitation – respectively – and makes audiences think. The acting of all the cast is superb. Puttana has the perfection to present the movements of characters, dialogues, flashbacks and music of his stories brilliantly. Cinematography - at many places is not good due to over-exposure of the film.

One who wants to get introduced to Puttana's cinema and feel his range should watch this film. A must.

(Rating: 7 out of 10)


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