Is it a side of Anjan Dutta? Is it autobiographical again ? Is it again a part of him being portrayed just like Ranjana Aami Aar Aashbona? Yes, maybe, but it is an excellent tale told of a father and son in the 70s. Anjan takes us back to the 70s during the beginning of the 70s when the Naxalite movement was it’s peak, the pub culture specially music scene on Park Street was developing, the hippies were coming in to the system,a pioneering rock band was developing and the political scene was very different. Basically a life and times which Anjan has passed and seen so it comes naturally to him. However maybe, all this is actually a backdrop because the real thing is about a father and a son from the 70s. Something which many people who are in Anjan ‘s group have most probably faced in their lives. Trying to do something on your own and and going against the wishes of your father, this is what the film’s primary theme is against the changing 70s which is the backdrop of the film.
At the forefront are these two characters. The father-Biren who is a failed lawyer from a traditional family , doesn’t have a single client(the only client is a distant relative with whom he is having an affair), he mentions Manu(the then CM Siddharta Shankar Ray) at the drop of a hat without knowing him, his wife is an alcoholic , he can’t afford his son’s fees and he want to see his son to be a barrister as he wants to realize his own dreams through his son . The son-Ranodeep ,a confused character who is caught between his parents, his sister runs away with a Naxal , but he sure wants to know what he wants to do-become an actor. This causes the rift between the father and the son. Also the age of the son is an age of innocence, of growing up, of the first kiss, of experimenting with several things including marijuana and alcohol. Yet he connects with his long lost grandfather who comes back one day out of the blue because he plays the violin himself and had aspired to be a conductor of an orchestra and so understands Rono’s feelings and wants him to achieve his dreams . However this feeling of happiness is short lived. Biren is completely lost and he breaks down one day when his daughter and son-in-law come to visit him. Biren is completely lost and he breaks down one day when his daughter and son-in-law come to visit him. He later on has a cerebral attack and becomes a vegetable (well in a way). The son is slowly on his way of realizing his dreams by this time.
In Ranjana ..., if Anjan played the aging rockstar to the hilt, he comes up with an excellent performance as the failed lawyer who fails to connect with his son till the very end , but it is too late then. Ranodeep Bose is seen again after Egaro and he is marvellous as the rebellious son in a role which is sort of a coming of age role. One scene which stands out-the altercation between the father and son when the son catches the father and Runu Mashi red handed. Ranodeep is simply too good in that scene. Srijit Mukherjee in a cameo as the friend, philosopher and guide is quite good actually and does quite well as is Deepankar Dey as the head of the family who who comes one day only to disappear soon after. Rita Koyral as the alcoholic wife of Biren is excellent. The rest of the characters whether Shankar Chakrabarty as the distant relative who is a debauch, Subhasish Mukherjee who plays the insane youngest brother and the rest of the cast are good. Rupa Ganguly as Runu Mashi is a perfect choice The music of the film is another strong point because it ranges from ‘Uthogo Bharatlakkhi’, ‘Bhalobeshe Sakhi ‘ to a song ‘Somewhere’ sung by Neel Dutt which is excellent and portrays the 1970s music scene well(in fact all the noted musicians of the city Amyt Dutta, Nandan Bagchi, Gyan Singh who are Anjan’s buddies as well are seen in the song).