This film is made more than a decade ago. It is refreshing to watch Anil Chatterjee, Ajay Banerjee, Ganesh Mukherjee in a film even released in 2008.
Director Manoj Sen wanted to make a loyal Tagore film and no doubt he has succeeded in his attempt. In this 115minute film he never tried to add on his own perspective in a Tagore story. In CHHUTI one would find the story written by Tagore in a visual form. The only thing he added is a song written by Tagore “Gram chhara oi ranga matir poth…”filmed on a village baul.
The story centering on a village boy Fatik written by Tagore is known to all, so it is needless to narrate the story any length. In the film, director Manoj Sen had been able to create the emotion as it was in the original. The two brothers, Fatik and Makhan with all their childish behavior seem lifted out from the pages of Tagore. In the film the director has cleverly used a village location instead of a set. The openness of the nature in those sequences has created an impression that we can easily indentify the problem of Fatik in a closed corner of city life. Manoj Sen has never used any indoor shot to hamper the openness of village life, and he has never used any outdoor shot in the city, apart from the journey of Fatik from the village to the city. So, when we see the bird in the cage, we can easily understand that Fatik’s life in the city is similar to the caged bird.
But we never understand why the director at least four times the same shot of sun-rise as the transition shot – morning to day in both the village sequence and in the city sequence. He should also have used the village to city journey shots of Fatik and then his mother separately.
Anil Chatterjee as the maternal uncle and Mamata Shankar as the mother of Fatik are superb, though Anil Chatterjee’s dialogue throwing suffers from mannerism. Alka Ganguly in the role of Anil’s wife is also good. But the best actor is who did the role of youngest son of Anil Chatterjee. His expressions are superb. He has conveyed all the pains of Fatik through his silent expressions.