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Ek Mutho Chhabi Movie
Anindo Sen
Jun 01, 2006 01:49 PM, 5792 Views
(Updated Jun 07, 2006)
The Moral Choice

’Ek Mutho Chhabi’ (A Fistful of Tales) is a undoubtedly a novel concept that has infused a lot of hope and excitement for the film enthusiasts in Bengal.It is an experimental concept; a collage of six films that are woven round the concept of moral aberrations, exploring the six sins (based on the Vedic idea of Shada Ripu).The six films are directed by six different directors and, needless to say, they are thoroughly different from one another in terms of narration, treatment and treatise.The first film is called ’Janmadin’ and it deals with lust (kaama). It is the story of three people --- an ultra-rich, physically challenged industrialist (played by Dilip Roy), his right-hand man (Rajatabha Dutta) and the latter’s wife (Sreelekha Mitra). It shows how the rich man, to satisfy his perverse sexual appetite acts out a fantasy every year on his birthday and, on this particular day that the story portrays, he simply manipulates the employee and his wife like puppets on a string. The cast also features Ananda Ghosh, the illustrious Bengali model, ina cameo. Directed by Arghyakamal Mitra, the unusual subject-matter is deftly handled.The second in the collection is a film called ’Pakshiraaj’, directed by Partha Sen, starring Arunima Ghosh, June Maliya, Amitabha Bhattacharya and Taranga Sarkar. It tries to capture the fallout of obsession (moha). A petty chaaiwaali dreams of making it big, and is powered only by her tremendous but unrealistic obsession with a high-flying female working professional who whizzes past in her lover’s two-wheeler, as if flying on Pegasus. Her dreams are hopelessly shattered one day and her fate gets sealed as she commits a murder in a fit of rage.The next offering is a tale of greed (lobh). Directed by Indranil Roy Choudhury, ’Tapanbabu’ is the best featurette amongst all six. It has Supriya Debi, Arindam Sil, Tulika and Kamalika in the cast. It is the story of a doctor who gives in to the lure of the lucre, all the while making the viewer privy to the scheming as he himself narrates to us. The acting talents are noteworthy as is the taut script that keeps the intrigue alive in multiple layers.The story that follows is called ’Raagunbabur Galpo’ and it is the weakest! Here we meet a person who loses his cool without any apparent provocation. He doesn’t need excuses to vent his anger on his wife, son or mother. But the frustration, if any, that vexes him continually is left untraced. The teenage son is finally seen inheriting the angry father’s bent when he hits his father unapologetically. The cast includes Biplab Chatterjee, Indrani Halder and Master Sourav; the director is Prabhat Roy. But often they seem as clueless as us viewers trying to fathom the intricacies of rage/anger (krodh).Next comes ’Tarpor Bhalobasha’ by Anjan Dutt. With Rupa Ganguly, Kunal, Pallabi and Bikram Ghosh in the cast, this tale of pride (mada) at its worst is entertaining although predictable. The director seems to be influenced a great deal by Western cinema that shows in his somewhat gimmicky execution. However, Rupa is wonderful as the actress who is immersed in selfish pride that doesn’t allow her ego to look beyond the tainted frames, but all of it is to change when she is the victim of a car-crash and has to be at the mercy and care of others.The final offering is a story called ’Progress Report’, directed by Kaushik Ganguly. It has Santu Mukherjee, Moumita, Samata Das, Monami Ghosh and others in the cast and, though more in the mode of a telefilm, it captures the vice of jealousy (maatsharya) rather satisfyingly as it ends on a positive note (not a forced one, like the one previous one).

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