RIFF Movies Archive

Chaturanga (Four Chapters)



India, 2008, 35mm - Color - 125

DIRECTED BY:
Suman Mukhopadhyay

CAST:
Dhritiman Chaterji, Rituparna Sengupta, Subrat Dutta, Joy Sengupta, Kabir Suman, Trina Banerjee

SCREENPLAY:
Suman Mukhopadhyay

PHOTOGRAPHY:
Indranil Mukherjee

EDITING:
Arghyakamal Mitra

SET DESIGN:
Hiran Mitra

COSTUME DESIGN:
Suchismita Dasgupta

MUSIC:
Debojyoti Mishra

SOUND:
Jojo Chaki and Anirban Sengupta (Dream Digital) and Sukanta Mazumdar

PRODUCER:
Avik Saha and Vishal Jhajharia

PRODUCTION:
Campfire Films

WORLD SALES:
Campfire Films

STORY DESCRIPTION:

Chaturanga is the story of a love that is caught between conflicting worlds of ideas. The lead protagonist Sachish fleets from radical positivism to religious mysticism in his quest for life's meaning. However, his search ultimately yields nothing but crushing disillusionment. This is because he cannot square his abstract ideals with the powerful presences of two women in his life. One of them is Damini, a young Hindu widow, and the other is Nanibala, the abandoned mistress of Sachish's own brother. Sachish tries to convince himself that Nanibala is simply a helpless woman who needs to be 'rescued' by him. Similarly, during his later religious phase, he pretends that the widow Damini is merely an enticement of Nature that must be avoided at all costs for spiritual salvation. Chaturanga thus becomes, after a point, a psychodrama of unbelievable cruelty. Nanibala becomes a victim of it because as a 'fallen woman' she can only be 'saved', but her humanity cannot be recognized. Damini is first given away by her dying husband, along with all her property, to a religious guru. She then falls in love with Sachish who can accept her only without her sexuality. Set in Colonial Bengal at the turn of the twentieth century, the film weaves a rich tapestry of crisscrossing desires and moralities. Based on the novel by the Nobel Prize winning author Rabindranath Tagore, Chaturanga is directed by Suman Mukhopadhyay.
DIRECTOR BIOGRAPHICAL NOTE:

Chaturanga, based on the book by Rabindranath Tagore, is Suman Mukhopadhyay's second feature film. In 2005, Suman completed his first feature film, Herbert, based on a novel by Nabarun Bhattacharya. The film was given the National Award for Best Regional Film. He has also been conferred with awards like the Most Promising Director (BFJA), Best Debut Director (Lankesh Award) and Audience Award in the Dhaka International Film Festival. Herbert has been screened in a number of national and international film festivals including Cannes, Florence, Bangkok, Osian Cinefan, Zanzibar, Mumbai, Pune and Kerala. Suman has done his film training from the New York Film Academy, USA. He is currently scripting 'The Hungry Tide,' based on the novel by Amitav Ghosh. Suman is also one of the best young theater directors working in India at present, having done productions ranging from European drama to major adaptations of Bengali masterpieces.

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