By Rituparno GHOSH


Drama - Post-Production 2008

    • Year of production
    • 2008
    • Genres
    • Drama
    • Countries
    • INDIA
    • Languages
    • Director(s)
    • Rituparno GHOSH
    • Synopsis
    • Shob Choritro Kalponik
      A train carrying a married couple crosses a little river.
      Radhika, the new bride is reminded of the English poem that she wrote as a child for a school assignment.
      In that part of India nobody had known that it was a translation of a poem by Bengal’s greatest poet, Rabindranath Tagore.
      Radhika (Bipasha Basu) comes to Calcutta after her marriage.
      Her parents had ‘arranged’ the match with her consent.
      Indraneel (Prosenjit) seemed eminently eligible.
      He is a poet, holds a good job, and also owns his own apartment in the city.
      Radhika is different in that she was a Bengali who had grown up in different parts of India with people of many ethnicities.
      When she speaks Bengali she often lapses into English, the link language that the multi-ethnic Indian middle class communicates with. Radhika’s ‘hybrid’ Bengali is often the butt of jokes between Indraneel and his friends.
      Radhika has a well-paying job and is happy to be the financial mainstay of the family.
      Indraneel loves Radhika but has little interest in the responsibilities that come with sharing a house and life with another person.
      He has conveniently left the running of the house to Radhika and their long-time domestic help Priyobala affectionately called Nondo’r Ma (Nondo’s mother) and devoted himself to writing poetry.
      While Radhika yearns for his companionship, he seems to prefer the company of a bunch of good-for-nothing poetry lovers who while away their time in drink and idle chatter.
      Radhika often wishes that Indraneel was more like Shekhar (Jisshu Sengupta) her friend and colleague from office.
      Shekhar is friendly and dependable.
      Shekhar is also a Bengali poetry buff but more cosmopolitan in outlook.
      So, Radhika feels no embarrassment speaking to him in her mix of Bengali and English.
      During an office tour, Shekhar and Radhika receive the happy news that Indraneel has been awarded one of Bengal’s highest literary awards.
      They rush back to celebrate the next day.
      Only to find that Indraneel has left to be with his friends and the house is in a mess.
      The endless bouts of feasting and celebrations have drained the household money that Radhika had left.
      There is neither food nor provisions in the house with which Shekhar could even be treated to a meal.
      Indraneel’s new found stardom drives him even further away from Radhika and household matters.
      One day, when Radhika comes back from work, she receives news that her mother is bed ridden after a heart attack.
      Worse, Indraneel has been conveyed the news much earlier but he had clearly forgotten to tell Radhika.
      The next day, after an altercation with her husband, Radhika, accompanied by Shekhar, leaves for her parental home.
      Away from the city, and as she nurses her mother back to health, Radhika and Shekhar become lovers.
      She decides it is time she left her marriage to start a new life.
      As the new lovers take a walk through the country, the household help comes running with tragic and devastating news.
      Indraneel has died of a massive heart attack.
      Indraneel’s sudden and shocking death becomes a turning point for Radhika.
      She had never imagined a separation of this kind.
      When she attends his memorial service his poems come as a revelation to her.
      Not just as powerful poetry.
      But as testimonies of their shared life and experiences.
      The language that alienated her now nurtures her and helps her retrieve her two loves.
      Poetry and Indraneel.
      This begins a strange and magical journey through which Radhika and Indraneel rediscover the love they had lost amidst the banality of everyday life.
      Shob Choritro Kalponik could be translated to mean ‘All Characters are Fictional’.
      The commonplace disclaimer that many films begin with.
      It could also mean ‘All Characters are Imaginary’.
      In the fantasmatic landscape of the film, several borders are crossed.
      Radhika returns to Bengali.
      A language that has been the true home of its speakers though they may be exiled from the geographical space known as Bengal.
      She also crosses the impossible divide that separates the living and the dead.
      Since neither poetry nor love can perish, death no longer comes as the end.
      It is just another beginning.