Review: Pather Panchali

Pather Panchali (Dir.: Satyajit Ray; Cast: Kanu Banerjee, Karuna Banerjee, Tulsi Chakrabarty et al.; Music: Ravi Shankar)

Pather Panchali marked the introduction of Satyajit Ray, arguably India’s finest filmmaker, on the world stage.

Pather Panchali, based on Bibhutibhushan Bandyopadhyay’s identically titled novel, is the story of a small family consisting of a couple, an elderly aunt and the two young children of this couple in a rural Indian setting.

Pather Panchali is the first film of the “Apu Trilogy”, the three Ray films chronicling the life of Apu, a village boy, over the years of his life. The film bears signs of what would make Ray a renowned name in world cinema in the years to follow. The immensely faithful portrayal of the life of the primary characters, complete with their hopes, dreams, petty troubles and idiosyncrasies, resonated deeply with the psyche of the Indian audience.

Another lasting contribution of Pather Panchali is its timeless title track composed by the renowned maestro Ravi Shankar, which even today never fails to evoke emotions indescribable in the hearts of generations of audiences.

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