From Supriya Chaudhuri

May 6, 2010

I’m writing in a bit late because I’ve been away, but I haven’t been able to get the film out of my mind. I was deeply moved by Sthaniya Sambaad, though it does not use emotions in a conventional way. Its employment of film language is exceptional: there isn’t a single false moment, despite the episodic, sometimes aimless, sometimes bizarre sequence of events. There is an extraordinary combination of urban nostalgia with a postmodern sense of the city as phantasmagoria, a space of fantasy and unreality. At one level the colony is a little oasis of 40s and 50s values (post-Partition values, and here the film is reminiscent of Ghatak) and at another it is just a springboard for an exploration of the new city, the city that will swallow the colony up and leave only tattered remnants behind. But what is finally remarkable, I think, is that Sthaniya Sambaad is not a slave to its own nostalgia: rather, it inhabits, flows with, the flux of its own postmodern moment.

Supryia Chaudhuri, Professor of English, Jadavpur University


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