7.3/10
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The Holy Man (1965)

Mahapurush (original title)
A devout Hindu family falls victim to a charlatan posing as a holy man.

Director:

Satyajit Ray

Writers:

Rajshekhar 'Parashuram' Basu (story "Birinchi Baba"), Satyajit Ray (screenplay)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Charuprakash Ghosh Charuprakash Ghosh ... Birinchi Baba
Rabi Ghosh ... Birinchi Baba's assistant (as Robi Ghosh)
Prasad Mukherjee Prasad Mukherjee ... Gurupada Mitter (as Prasad Mukhopadhyay)
Gitali Roy Gitali Roy ... Buchki
Satindra Bhattacharya Satindra Bhattacharya ... Satya
Somen Bose Somen Bose ... Nibaran (as Somen Basu)
Santosh Dutta Santosh Dutta ... Professor Nani
Renuka Roy Renuka Roy ... Nani's wife
Satya Banerjee Satya Banerjee ... Nitai (as Satya Bandyopadhyay)
Haridhan Mukherjee Haridhan Mukherjee ... Ganesh (as Haridhan Mukhopadhyay)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
J. Banerjee J. Banerjee
Dilip Bose Dilip Bose ... (as Dilip Basu)
Jagat Chakraborty Jagat Chakraborty
Ila Chatterjee Ila Chatterjee ... (as Ila Chattopadhyay)
Santi Chatterjee Santi Chatterjee ... (as Shanti Chattopadhyay)
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Storyline

A retired lawyer meets a holy man # Birinchi Baba (Charuprakash Ghosh) and his assistant (Robi Ghosh) # on his way back from a pilgrimage # and is totally taken in by his supernatural life. The holy man is on first name terms with Buddha and all the gods of the Hindu pantheon. What the world calls 'Cruci-fiction' he calls 'Cruci-fact' because he has seen it with his own eyes! He even starts giving orations to an audience of the rich and famous at the lawyer's residence. The gullible lawyer decides to get his entire family initiated into the guru's fold # including his unmarried younger daughter (Gitali Roy) who is being courted by a young man (Satindra Bhattacharya). His group of intelligent and rationalist friends (Somen Bose et al) decide to take matters in their own hands # and hatch a plot to expose the smooth-talking charlatan. Written by Diptakirti Chaudhuri

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

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Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

India

Language:

Bengali

Release Date:

7 May 1965 (India) See more »

Also Known As:

O Santo See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

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User Reviews

 
Cultural vignette
1 January 2006 | by lyrxsfSee all my reviews

This is one of Ray's short stories. It lacks the intensity of his full-length features. Its a satire which appropriately captures the post-independence Indian zeitgeist. Its a sweet tale of how a charlatan is exposed with help from basic science and motivation from a lover boy in distress. Be it a short story or not, in every one of his movies, Ray has been a beacon by conveying his socially progressive ideas. He's a master at exposing the fault lines in the Indian society and delivering his wisdom packaged in a entertaining manner. I saw the movie in a combination pack with another one of his shorts - Kapurush. Kapurush is an emotion-packed drama. It captures the anxiety and rekindling of emotions of a chance meeting between two estranged lovers.


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