To me when Sambhu Mitra recites Rabindranath or when Debabrata Biswas sings Rabindranath, or when Satyajit Ray made a song on Tagore in his films, his writings acquire a different dimension and meaning. It touches my heart in a different way.
But it differs from man to man. For example, the way Rituparno Ghosh made the song "Chhaya Ghanaiche Bone Bone…" of Tagore in his latest released film "Khela" is quite different from Ray, when he used the same song in his film "Jana Aranya". It appears to me that the inclusion of the Tagore song in "Khela" was a post-production thought. It probably was not in the mind of the director when he wrote the script. Or, during the shooting. Actually there was no preparation for the inclusion of the song neither in the script nor in the screenplay. It came as an alternative to back ground music. And for that reason the song brings no dimension, no meaning to me. But till date I can remember each and every shot of Ray`s "Chhaya Ghanaiche Bone Bone…" It has such an impact. In "Khela" this song would not create any impression in the mind. In fact "Khela" as an film is totally failed to impress me. Apart from the cinematography by Avik Mukhopadhay, all the departments of the film making have failed to generate any interest.
A film maker, named Raja, wants to make a film on Abanindra Nath`s "Naloke". Failing to get the permission of the parents of the child Aveerup, the director kidnapped the boy and took him to the jungle of North Bengal for shooting. During the shooting, a friendship develops between the director and the child actor. This is the story line in brief. It could be the basis of a very good film, if the script is done in an intelligent way. Rituparno Ghosh started the film through an interesting dialogue of the director`s wife Shila where she explains how much Raja is against having a child. Shila thinks Raja believes a child can ruin his film career. And in the end, the child actor of Raja`s film sleeps besides Shila in their bed and Raja is sitting beside. But the problem of the film is that we failed to understand clearly whether the belief of Raja has been changed or not, though it has a faint hint of that. It should have been more clear.
It seemed from the shooting of the film in the film sequence, that Raja was shooting a single sequence of the journey of the Naloke alone in the deep jungle, because there were no other co-actors of Aveerup in the shooting unit. And we find only two scenes of his lone journey in the entire film in the same costume. So, the necessity of the presence of the costume designer from Mumbai in the outdoor shooting is questionable.
More questionable is why Raja is trying to film "Naloke"? Nobody knows his philosophy of the producer, who remains with the shooting unit in the entire outdoor shooting schedule.
But these are all unanswered questions. The director is not bound to tell everything. So why "Naloke" might be unimportant to be Rituparno to clearly explain to us, but it could help us to understand the character Raja clearly. Unfortunately for that reason it remained two-dimensions out of a person throughout the film, and for that reason we failed to understand the growth of the friendship between the director and the child artist, which is the central theme of Khela.
Probably while scripting the film, Rituparno`s mind was in a Khela (game) mode. For the first time in his entire film career, we failed to understand his principle characters. As for example we are not very clear what Anjali, the N.I.D. passed costume designer wants. Does she have a feeling for the director Raja, if so what attracts her about him? We failed to understand this, and if we failed to understand the basic want of the character of the film, it affects to understand the film.
Prosenit (Raja), Manisha Koirala (Shila), Raima Sen (Anjali) and Aakash Nil Dutta Mukhopadhay (Aveerup) are in the lead roles on the film. They did what they are supposed to do out of that script.