Wednesday, January 25, 2006

36 Chowringhee Lane

Another movie seen in the Film Fest Anachronism presented by Drishya:

I saw '36 Chowringhee Lane' a bilingual (Bengali and English) movie directed by Aparna Sen. (For her debut feature, Aparna won the Best Director award at the Indian National Film Awards. It also won the Grand Prix (the Golden Eagle) at the Manila International Film Festival.). A nice movie about an aging Anglo Indian spinster, and how her lonely life is transformed when she meets a young couple who use her house as a rendezvous point.

It touches on issues such as the lonely old people who do not have any family members living with them, to the plight of the anglo indians (and similarly Parsis), who were in held powerful positions within the government and the private sector due to their knowledge of English and higher levels of education, but with the average indian (and even the lower castes and tribals) getting more educated, how these people from the old order are slwoly but steadily getting replaced by indians in all positions. Thus leading to emigration of anglo indians to other english speaking and christian countires such as australia and canada (in search of greener pastures)
Another aspect that is well covered is the plight of people in the old age homes in india, how these people are left to die once they are old enough and no one even cares about them.

Similarly is the fate of the protagonist, Miss Violet Stoneham (Played by Shashi Kapoors late wife Jennifer Kendal), that once she is old and lonely, not only is she demoted in the school where she is a teacher, (where she si asked to teach grammar to girls in primary school instead of Shakespeare in the senior classes), but also how the couple whom she allows to spend time in her apartment (which lends name to the movie), conviniently ignore her as soo nas they get married and thus showing us how materialistic society has become.

Actually after looking at the movie i think, why do people want immortality, when u see the kind of pain old agae is. (actually why would anyone want immortality when one is at a loss how to spend a lazy sunday afternoon)

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