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Director  Satyajit Ray
Release date  1958 (India)
Country  India
8.2/10 IMDb

Genre  Drama, Music
Language  Bengali
Jalsaghar movie poster
Release date  10 October 1958 (1958-10-10) (India) April 1962 (1962-04) (UK) 15 October 1963 (1963-10-15) (US)
Based on  Short story Jalsaghar  by Tarashankar Bandopadhyay
Writer  Tarashankar Banerjee (based on the story by), Satyajit Ray (script), Santi P. Choudhury (assistant screenplay writer)
Music director  Ustad Vilayat Khan, Robin Majumdar
Screenplay  Satyajit Ray, Santi P. Choudhury
Cast  Chhabi Biswas (Huzur Biswambhar Roy), Padmadevi (Mahamaya), Kali Sarkar (Diener Ananta), Gangapada Basu (Mahim Ganguli), Tulsi Lahiri (Grundstücksverwalter), Pinaki Sengupta (Khoka, Roys Sohn)
Similar movies  Dances with Wolves, The Celebration, 1408, Little Lips, The Hours, Harold and Maude

Jalsaghar converted

Jalsaghar (Bengali: জলসাঘর Jalsāghar, "The Music Room") is a 1958 Indian Bengali drama film written and directed by Satyajit Ray based on a popular short story by Bengali writer Tarasankar Bandyopadhyay and starring Chhabi Biswas. It was the fourth feature film directed by Satyajit Ray. The shooting was done at Nimtita Raajbari, in Nimtita village, 10 kilometres from Murshidabad.


Jalsaghar movie scenes


Jalsaghar movie scenes

Jalsaghar depicts the end days of a decadent zamindar (landlord) in Bengal, and his efforts to uphold his family prestige even when faced with economic adversity. The landlord, Biswambhar Roy (Chhabi Biswas), is a just but other-worldly man who loves to spend time listening to music and putting up spectacles rather than managing his properties ravaged by floods and the abolition of the zamindari system by the Indian government. He is challenged by a commoner who has attained riches through business dealings, in putting up spectacles and organising music fests. This is the tale of a zamindar who has nothing left but respect and sacrifices his family and wealth trying to retain it.


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  • Chhabi Biswas – Biswambhar Roy
  • Padma Devi – Mahamaya, Roy's wife
  • Pinaki Sen Gupta – Khoka, Roy's son
  • Gangapada Bose – Mahim Ganguly, Neighbour
  • Tulsi Lahari – Manager of Roy's estate
  • Kali Sarkar – Ananta, Roy's servant
  • Ustad Waheed Khan – Ustad Ujir Khan, Singer
  • Roshan Kumari – Krishna Bai, The dancer
  • Begum Akhtar – Durga Bai, Singer
  • Other credits

    Jalsaghar Jalsaghar Wikipedia
  • Music & Dance performances

  • Jalsaghar Jalsaghar 1958 Indian maestro Satyajit Rays Bangla film starring(On screen) – Begum Akhtar, Roshan Kumari, Ustad Waheed Khan, Bismillah Khan (Off screen) – Dakhshinamohan Thakur, Ashish Kumar, Robin Mazumdar, Imrat Khan


    Jalsaghar Amazoncom Jalsaghar The Music Room 1958 VHS Chhabi Biswas

    Jalsaghar was based on a popular short story written by Bengali writer Tarasankar Bandyopadhyay. After the box office failure of Aparajito, Ray desperately needed a hit film and decided to make a film based on both a popular piece of literature and a film that would incorporate Indian music. It was the first film to extensively incorporate classical Indian music and dancing. Ray began shooting in May 1957.

    Jalsaghar The Film Sufi The Music Room Satyajit Ray 1958

    While in pre-production, Ray and his crew had difficulty finding a suitable location for Biswambhar Roy's palace. By chance they met a man who recommended the palace of Roy Chowdhurys in Nimtita, known as the Nimtita Rajbari and Ray decided to scout the location. To his surprise the palace was not only perfect for the film but just so happened to have once belonged to Upendra Narayan, whom Bandopadhyay had based his main character on when first writing the short story. Ray worked closely with composer Ustad Vilayat Khan on the film, although he was initially uncertain about the composer's musical choices and had to convince Khan to make more sombre music pieces for the film.

    Jalsaghar KONANGAL 25th March 2012 Satyajit Rays JALSAGHAR

    The indoor shooting for the movie (including the famous Jalsaghar scene) was conducted inside the Aurora Film Corporation studio In Maniktala, Kolkata. The studio has now been demolished.


    Jalsaghar Try this quiz on old Bengali films Half Samosa

    Although the film received mostly poor reviews in India, it received the Presidential Award in New Delhi for best film. When the film was gradually released in Europe and the US in the early 1960s it became a critical and financial hit and helped establish Ray's international reputation, although Ray said that in 1958 he did not think that the film would be successful in foreign markets. New Statesman film critic John Coleman compared Ray to Jean Renoir and Marie Seton said that the film "challenged the whole convention of songs and dances in India cinema. Audiences...conditioned to the introduction of songs and dances as entertainment interludes and [as] dramatic and romantic stresses, had never before been confronted with...classical singing and dancing as integral focal points of realistic sequences." John Russell Taylor said that the film was "one of Ray's most masterly films, exquisitely photographed and directed with a complete, unquestioning mastery of mood...For those willing to place themselves under its hypnotic spell it offers pleasures of unique delicacy." Roger Ebert hailed it as "[Ray's] most evocative film, and he fills it with observant details." In 1963 Bosley Crowther praised the "delicacy of direction...[and] eloquence of Indian music and the aurora of mise en scène." However, that same year Stanley Kauffman criticised the film, calling it "a deeply felt, extremely tedious film...the Indian music is simply uncongenial and tiresome to our ears." In 1965 Derek Malcolm called it Ray's "most perfect film." When the film was released in Paris in 1981 it was a surprise hit and led many French critics to adopt a new appreciation for Ray that had not been common in France up to that time. San Francisco Chronicle critic Edward Guthmann described it as "A wonderful tale of pride and the fools it makes of men."

    Awards and recognitions

    Jalsaghar Jalsaghar the musicroom of a monomaniac Lets talk about Bollywood
  • 1959 – All India Certificate of Merit for the Second Best Feature Film
  • 1959 – National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Bengali
  • Best Music Award at 1st Moscow International Film Festival. Also got a nomination for Grand Pix for Best Film in the festival.
  • Widely regarded as one of the greatest films of all time. Voted #20 on the list of "100 Best Films" by the prominent French magazine 'Cahiers du Cinema' in 2008. Was ranked at #27, #146 & #183 respectively in the Sight and Sound list of Greatest Films in 1992, 2002 & 2012. The British Film Institute placed it at #270 in their list of 360 Classics. Ranked at 350 in 1001 Movies You Must See Before You Die'. Got the 7th spot (jointly with few other films) in the list of Cinemaya's Greatest Asian Films (1998). Recently Busan International Film Festival featured it at no. #18 (jointly with few other films) in their list of 100 Best Asian Cinema.
  • Preservation

    The Academy Film Archive preserved Jalsaghar in 1996.

    Home video

    In 1993, Merchant Ivory Productions restored the film and Sony Pictures Classics released it theatrically in New York with five other Ray films. It was released on VHS in 1995.

    In July 2011, an HD digitally restored version of the film was released on DVD and Blu-ray by The Criterion Collection.


    Jalsaghar Wikipedia
    Jalsaghar IMDbJalsaghar Roger EbertJalsaghar Rotten TomatoesJalsaghar

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