Elar Char Adhyay Focussing on the freedom struggle

Elar Char Adhyay,Bappaditya Bandopadhyay’s latest film,is a celluloid transcription of Rabindranath Tagore’s last novel Char Adhyay (1934).

Written by Shoma A. Chatterji | Published: April 6, 2012 5:59 pm

The novel was earlier made as a film in Hindi in 1997 directed by Kumar Shahani. Elar Char Adhyay is a tribute to the poet on his 150th birth anniversary. The central character of Ela has been essayed by Paoli Dam,one of the most sensuous actresses in contemporary Bengali cinema. The two men in her life,namely Indranath,the political activist,is portrayed by Indraneil Sengupta and newcomer Bikram has essayed Ela’s lover Atin.

“Char Adhyay probably has the most contemporary relevance among Tagore’s novels. Many political issues can find solutions from Tagore’s vision expressed in the novel. Not once during the shooting did we take any liberties with the original work. It was a challenge for us to convey Tagore’s thoughts on nation-building through non-violence,” explains Bappaditya. He added ‘Ela’ as a prefix to his title because,“The four chapters in the novel are actually four phases in the life of Ela,a rebel in every sense of the term. She not only questions her mother’s blind religious faith and age-old values but also questions her leader’s use of violence to achieve his goal. Indranath imagines himself to be ‘Krishna’ in the Kurukshetra war and wants to use his followers as instruments to further the national cause.”

Produced under the banner of Dreamz Movies and Entertainment Pvt. Ltd.,the film has been cinematographed by Rana Dasgupta,edited by Dipak Mandal,with production design by Gautam Basu and music by Gaurav Chatterjee.

Char Adhyay is a novel far ahead of its time. Éla is a rebel,a romantic,a passionate woman madly in love with Atin. She is torn between her love for Atin and her commitment to the freedom movement that does not permit marriage or family live. “Ela has tremendous inner strength. I loved portraying her,” says Paoli.

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