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Pather Panchali (1955)

Not Rated | | Drama | 22 September 1958 (USA)
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Impoverished priest Harihar Ray, dreaming of a better life for himself and his family, leaves his rural Bengal village in search of work.

Director:

Satyajit Ray

Writers:

Bibhutibhushan Bandyopadhyay (novel), Satyajit Ray (screenplay)
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Top Rated Indian Movies #12 | Nominated for 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 8 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Kanu Bannerjee Kanu Bannerjee ... Harihar Ray (as Kanu Bandyopadhyay)
Karuna Bannerjee ... Sarbojaya Ray (as Karuna Bandopadhyay)
Chunibala Devi Chunibala Devi ... Indir Thakrun
Uma Das Gupta ... Durga (as Uma Dasgupta)
Subir Banerjee ... Apu Ray (as Subir Bandopadhyay)
Runki Banerjee Runki Banerjee ... Little Durga (as Runki Bandopadhyay)
Reba Devi Reba Devi ... Seja Thakrun
Aparna Devi Aparna Devi ... Nilmoni's wife
Tulsi Chakraborty Tulsi Chakraborty ... Prasanna, school teacher
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Haren Banerjee Haren Banerjee ... Chinibas, Sweet-seller (as Haren Bandyopadhyay)
Rampada Das Rampada Das
Nibhanani Devi Nibhanani Devi ... Dasi Thakurun
Rama Gangopadhaya Rama Gangopadhaya ... Ranu Mookerjee
Roma Ganguli Roma Ganguli ... Roma (as Rama Gangopadhyay)
Binoy Mukherjee Binoy Mukherjee ... Baidyanath Majumdar (as Binoy Mukhopadhyay)
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Storyline

The story of a young boy, Apu, and life in his small Indian village. His parents are quite poor - his father Harihar, a writer and poet, gave away the family's fruit orchard to settle his brother's debts. His sister Durga and an old aunt also still lives with them. His mother Sarbojaya bears the brunt of the family's situation. She scrapes by and sells her personal possessions to put food on the table and has to bear the taunts of her neighbors as Durga is always stealing fruit from their orchard. Things get worse when Harihar disappears for five months and Durga falls ill. Even after Harihar returns, the family is left with few alternatives. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

India

Language:

Bengali

Release Date:

22 September 1958 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Pather Panchali See more »

Filming Locations:

Boral, West Bengal, India

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$536,364
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Government of West Bengal See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (within Bengal)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Most of the music for the film was composed by Ravi Shankar. While composing the score, Shankar was only able to see about half the film. He ended up recording most of the music for the film in one 11 hour session. The film's cinematographer, Subrata Mitra, who like Shankar played the sitar, provided additional music for the remaining score. See more »

Goofs

Although the film is set in early 20th Century rural India (a time in which public health campaigns presumably did not exist), when Apu and Durga are shown hiding in the fields waiting to catch a glimpse of the train, a vaccination mark is clearly visible on the right arm of Uma Das Gupta, who portrays Durga. See more »

Quotes

Wandering Holy Man: [singing] Be charitable from the goodness of your heart. If I can reach the Mother's blessed feet, I shall place them on the lotus seat of my heart. What do I care for worldly wealth?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Darjeeling Limited (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

It's A Long Way to Tipperary
(uncredited)
Written by Jack Judge and Harry Williams
Played by the band
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

A song for a long road ahead.
28 March 2004 | by SinnermanSee all my reviews

There is this one scene in Satyajit Ray's Pather Panchali when the eruption of a conflict between Apu's family and a quarrelsome neighbour brought the film to a complete standstill (for me anyway). Those few characters' state of mind and their relationship dynamics at that point in time, was conveyed with such explosive intensity, I got gut punched drunk.

Pather Panchali boasts of suitably melodramatic yet highly intuitive performances. Its breath taking cinematography ranks alongside existential beauty this side of Malick heaven. The musical scoring, by the great Ravi Shankar, is identifiably Indian, yet universally sublime. Together, these myriad parts melded into a whole so grand in its social consciousness, so incisively intimate in its portrait of one family, I could do nothing but be slowly devoured like a most willing prey.

On 4th Oct 2003, I saw my all time favourite film, Tokyo Story. The feeling I got today from Pather Panchali, is as close as is possible from that fateful October day.

Pather Panchali is one of the best films I have ever seen. This will be a night to remember. Now on with the other two then.


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