Badshahi Angti, the latest film on the Bengali sleuth Feluda, which released on December 19 had already gathered much attention prior to its release; thanks to the social media, the hype had been generated around the film months before the film even declared the release date. Even I was much excited to see the film with a new Feluda and Topse at the helm of affairs. So when I was assigned with the task of reviewing the film, the Feluda fan in me was immensely happy. So how did the film fare? Read the review to know about the film and enjoy pouring through the celebrity pics from the grand premiere.
The film Badshahi Angti revolves around a precious ring studded with diamonds and emeralds which is rumored to have been worn by Emperor Aurangzeb. Feluda along with Topse and his father go for a visit to advocate uncle’s house in Lucknow. They meet Dr. Srivastav, who is the present owner of this ring. The doctor was presented with this ring by one of his patients Pyarelal. After a burglar attack on his house which the doctor believed was intended to steal the ring, he asks the advocate to keep the ring. However the ring is lost. Feluda meanwhile meets Bonobihari babu, an interesting Bengali man who keeps snakes, poisonous spiders and scorpions as pets. This intrigues Feluda. Feluda starts investigating about the lost ring and how he gets back the ring and unmasks the criminals is what the film is all about.
Director Sandip Ray must be appreciated for his smart story selection as with this story he could not only very comfortably launch a new Feluda and but also give the actors enough scope to improvise and experiment. With no Jatayu in the film, the director could amply focus on the characters in hand and his efforts must be appreciated. After having watched Sandip Ray’s other Feluda films, I can also say that this one is any day better than the previous efforts as there is certain freshness to the narrative of the film (that also may be courtesy the new Feluda and Topse).
Cinematography by Sirsha Ray is good as he has beautifully captured the life and the very essence of the two cities Lucknow and Haridwar, clearly marking out the differences in their make and ambience. The visuals will thus be a treat for those in the audiences who have not visited these places and an equally pleasing experience for those who have sat at the ghats of Har Ki Pauri during the Ganga Aarti as well as tasted the yummy Tunde Ke Kebab in the city of the nawabs.
One of the most talked about aspects of the film is the cast. Abir Chatterjee who is making his debut as the new Feluda and Sourav Das as the new Topse look perfect. One can actually mark out the similarities between Abir and Feluda as described in the cover of the original book which I believe might have been the biggest reason for Sandip Ray to cast Abir as the Bengali sleuth; that too amidst so many controversies and speculations. In a recent interview with Sholoana Bangaliana, Abir Chatterjee even said that the director wanted him to portray the sleuth in his own style and that there should not be any shade of the other actors who have played the role before and the good news is, Abir has done just that! He lends certain freshness to the character. The toned down actor looks and plays his part with gusto. Despite being known as the face of Byomkesh Bakshi and having another Byomkesh film releasing on the same day as Badshahi Angti, Abir manages to keep the two sleuths distinctly different. However, though different in portrayals, Abir’s mannerisms at times do give in reminding one of Byomkesh; especially when he smokes his cigarette. But that’s it.
Sourav Das as Topse also does justice to his role. His lack of performance, ignorance and innocence, kind of, works well for the film. Had he shown too much smartness it would have totally gone against the essence of the film! This is their first adventure together and one cannot expect a teenage boy to be all practiced and perfect.
Paran Bandopadhyay as Bonobihari Babu really shines in the film. The actor proves yet again why he is considered one of the finest character artistes of the present time. He breathes life into the character of Bonobihari Babu. The old man with a strong liking for the sound of wild animals like rattlesnakes, scorpions or the evil look in his eyes when he asks Feluda to give him back the ring are just examples of awesome acting.
The other actors like Biswajit Chakraborty, Dwijen Bandopadhyay, Rajatava Dutta, Bharat Kaul, Deepankar Dey are all good in their roles.
Music by Sandip Ray also blends well with the narrative and the flow of this detective film and revisiting Satyajit Ray’s original tune sets the mood well for Feluda franchise.
Badshahi Angti makes for a good launching pad for the new pair of Feluda and Topse. This is just the beginning of the duo. Watch the film and you will not be disappointed!!
Bengali Film Badshahi Angti Premiere
Sholoana Bangaliana Rating- 4/5
Badshahi Angti Movie Review by:
Priyanka Dutta takes a keen interest in lifestyle and entertainment related news. She also enjoys interviewing celebrities and other renowned personalities. Priyanka holds a post graduate degree in English and Mass Communication. Journalism is her passion and she has reported for many a reputed international web portals.
The information and views set out in this movie review are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official opinion of the Publication/Organization. Neither the Publication/Organization nor any person acting on their behalf may be held responsible for the use which may be made of the information contained therein.
Photographs: Amitav Sarkar