Part of Weekend Classics
Part of Staff Picks and programmed by John, who says “PATHER PANCHALI is the directorial debut of Indian filmmaker Satyajit Ray and the first film in the Apu Trilogy. PATHER PANCHALI is a perfect example of why Ray is placed among the ranks of the all-time great directors. The film has a quiet beauty which is further highlighted by Ravi Shankar’s score.”
Sat, Apr 29 at 12:00pm: Introduction from Belcourt staff member John Southwood | BUY TICKETS
The release in 1955 of Satyajit Ray’s debut, PATHER PANCHALI, introduced to the world an eloquent and important new cinematic voice. A depiction of rural Bengali life in a style inspired by Italian neorealism, this naturalistic but poetic evocation of a number of years in the life of a family introduces us to little Apu — and, just as essentially, the women who will help shape him: his independent older sister, Durga; his harried mother, Sarbajaya, who, with her husband often away, must hold the family together; and his kindly and mischievous elderly “auntie“ Indir — all of them vivid, multifaceted characters. With resplendent photography informed by its young protagonist’s perpetual sense of discovery, the Cannes-awarded PATHER PANCHALI is an immersive cinematic experience and a film of elemental power.
“If these aren’t the most beautiful movies ever made, they’re the most beautiful ones I know. The beauty of this restoration may be enough to move you to tears.” —Stephanie Zacharek, The Village Voice “Standing above fashion, [THE APU TRILOGY] creates a world so convincing that it becomes, for a time, another life we might have lived. The three films swept the top prizes at Cannes, Venice and London, and created a new cinema for India—whose prolific film industry had traditionally stayed within the narrow confines of swashbuckling musical romances. Never before had one man had such a decisive impact on the films of his culture... It is about a time, place and culture far removed from our own, and yet it connects directly and deeply with our human feelings. It is like a prayer, affirming that this is what the cinema can be, no matter how far in our cynicism we may stray.” —Roger Ebert (2001)