Poverty is a vicious cycle and getting out of that cycle is near-impossible. Bimal Roy’s 1953 movie Do Bigha Zamin examines the unforgiving nature of poverty and the way the system that’s supposed to assist the poor, is designed to maintain the less-fortunate in the identical place.
Do Bigha Zamin opens in a village the place the farmers are celebrating the rains after an extended stretch of drought. As they sing “Hariyaala Saawan Dhol Bajaata Aaya,” it’s laborious to think about that this is able to be the final time we see the protagonist, Shambhu and his household, experiencing pleasure as a result of from right here on, they’re bombarded with tragedies.
Shambu, performed by a convincing Balraj Sahni, and his household depend upon their ‘Do Bigha Zamin’ for his livelihood so when the village zamindar forces Shambhu to promote his land, he takes a stand however with out hurting the massive man’s ego. In any case, his ‘dharti’ is ‘maa’ and the zamindar, his ‘maai-baap’. For this naive man, promoting the land is unimaginable so he decides to promote every little thing else he owns to repay his debt.
However how will a humble, uneducated, poor man battle towards the intelligent zamindar? Shambhu is trapped and has to repay Rs 235 to the zamindar in three months, which is an not possible feat for a poor man like him. So, he units off to Calcutta, the massive metropolis that guarantees a golden future. As he leaves his village on foot, and the village folks sing ‘Dharti Kahe Pukaar Ke’, you understand issues will get darker from right here on. He longingly seems to be at his ‘dharti maa’ because the lyrics say ‘Tu phir aaye na aaye’ and it’s evident that poor Shambhu is trapped in a maze with no escape.
Shambhu’s tryst to avoid wasting Rs 235 has him dealing with one impediment after one other. The story of Do Bigha Zamin, by Salil Chowdhury, is so tragic that it leaves you gasping for breath. Each nook he turns to, is a useless finish. Each lifeboat he will get on, sinks. His struggles begin feeling claustrophobic as a result of no matter he touches turns to ash. Do Bigha Zamin is the type of movie that pushes one into the darkish nook of despair that stays with you for a very long time.
Do Bigha Zamin is ready at a time when India was nonetheless a younger nation and it’s evident that at a time when adjustments had been required from the bottom up, the underprivileged class was ignored till they had been wanted for his or her laborious labour. Because the pandemic and ensuing migration has proven us, little appears to have modified.
It’s famously identified that Bimal Roy was impressed to make Do Bigha Zamin after he watched the 1948 movie Bicycle Thieves. The character of Kanhaiya, Shambhu’s son, is an homage to Vittorio De Sica’s movie. Within the later years, Do Bigha Zamin was seen because the movie that germinated the concept of new-wave cinema. Though Indian cinema was nonetheless in its early years within the Nineteen Fifties, movies like this pushed the boundaries of what might be completed on the silver display screen.
Do Bigha Zamin rests on the sturdy shoulders of Balraj Sahni who truly ran barefoot on the new asphalt roads of Calcutta whereas taking pictures the movie. Balraj, who was identified for taking part in the upscale gentleman in movies, melted into the position of Shambhu and gave a defining efficiency that’s positive to depart you pondering for hours. Regardless of being a 68-year-old movie, Do Bigha Zamin has a tragic soul that may nonetheless hang-out the viewer.
Hrishikesh Mukherjee, who later turned a celebrated filmmaker, was a key a part of Bimal Ry’s group and in Do Bigha Zamin, Mukherjee was credited with screenplay, modifying and even aiding Roy in path. The movie additionally encompasses a brief cameo by Meena Kumari, which comes as a nice shock, maybe the one one on this tragic story. Nirupa Roy, who was later identified for her iconic mom roles in movies like Amar Akbar Anthony and Deewar, performs Shambhu’s spouse Parvati right here. Her demure persona mixed along with her naivety provides a little bit of allure to the movie.
Do Bigha Zamin is a kind of must-watch movies which have made the muse for Hindi cinema. The tragedy of this movie is in its soul, and that soul hasn’t aged a day.
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Do Bigha Zamin is streaming on ZEE5 and ShemarooMe.
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