When Basu Chatterji passed away in 2020, I wanted to pay a tribute to him, because he was one of my favourite directors from the 70s and 80s (and he directed Byomkesh Bakshi, a television series I love). But given that I restrict my blog to films from before the 70s, there was only one film that would fit: Sara Akash, Chatterji’s first film, which was released in 1969.
This was in June 2020, at the peak of the lockdown. The situation was dire. We were getting news of people we knew who were ill with Covid, even a few who had succumbed. Close family were suffering the fallouts of the lockdown. I tried watching Sara Akash, but couldn’t sit beyond the first five minutes. Perhaps I was not in the right frame of mind.
But now I was tempted to give it another try, because I’d been reading about the film in Anirudha Bhattacharjee’s Basu Chatterji and Middle-of-the-Road Cinema (my review here).