from Tom Gunning

“Spring in the Colony proves that the great tradition of Bengali cinema still exists. At turns poignant and wryly funny the film follows a range of urban characters — thieves, business men, poets, slackers and shopkeepers from a neighborhood of post partition refugees slated for large scale destruction and re-development — as they move through the city over a twenty four hour period. With an eye alert to the human and revealing detail that recalls the masterpieces of Ritwik Ghatak, the directors create an enduring image of urban life at a point of transition, capturing the way people negotiate their lives and traditions even as they are being dislodged and ignored. As serious as its themes are, the film never loses a lightness of touch and an all-embracing compassion for its characters, their illusion and foibles, their desire and timidities, that matches the films of Italian neo-reallism. I have rarely seen a first film with such assurance of tone and genuine warmth towards its characters.”

Tom Gunning

Professor and Chair, Cinema and Media Studies, University of Chicago


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