Ghare Baire (The Home and the World) has not had an easy passage. Satyajit
Ray originally planned to adapt Rabindranath Tagore's novel written in 1948 in
the form of a diary with three voices, and his interest in the project waxed and
waned in the years since then. Shooting eventually began in Calcutta in December
1982, but the film was not completed, due to Ray's prolonged illness, until May
1984, and it was just in time for the Cannes Festival.
The film won the National Awards for best feature film, best supporting actor and best costume designing in 1985, and the Critics Award at the Damascus International Film Festival in 1986.
It is arguably Ray's most profound and cinematographically most accomplished work.
In 1905, pursuing the colonial policy of divide and rule, the Viceroy of India, Lord Curzon, proposed splitting Bengal into two separate administrative units. The real reason was that this would create a rift between the Hindus and Muslims and thereby weakening the bond that had existed so far between the two religious groups. Curzon's policy was violently opposed by a large section of the middle class intelligentsia, giving rise to widespread terrorist activity and boycott of British goods.
Sandip Mukherji, a leader of this political movement, comes to Suksayar, the country estate of his friend Nikhil Choudhury. Nikhil is keen that his wife Bimala should come out of orthodox seclusion and mix with his friends. Bimala has opposed this for a long time, but agrees at last to meet Sandip.
Bimala is swept off her feet by Sandip's charisma and lively charm, which contrast so strongly with her husband's calm sobriety. Sandip, too, is attracted to Bimala and decides to make Suksayar his center of political activity staying as a guest in Nikhil's house. Nikhil realizes that his wife has fallen in love. He also knows that Sandip is less a true patriot than a man driven by his lust for poser.
Only the last moment does Bimala realize that her infatuation has been for a man whose only concern is for self-glorification, and goes back to her husband who forgives her. But it is too late - communal riots have broken out. Sandip runs away to safety, and Nikhil rides off into the night to face the hostile mob.
The film is being brought to you by the Hyderabad Film Club. Please contact Bh S S Prakash Reddy, Secretary, HFC, at 373-0265 (O) for further details.