Satyajit Ray’s The Apu Trilogy JUNE 5-9 at the Pacific Cinematheque


Satyajit Ray’s The Apu Trilogy
JUNE 5-9

Following its star-studded debut in New York, The Cinematheque proudly presents the Canadian premiere of the great Indian director Satyajit Ray‘s digitally restored (and re-subtitled) The Apu Trilogy, one of the essential masterworks of world cinema.

Satyajit Ray became India’s first international auteur with his trio of critically-adored films that form the beloved Apu Trilogy: Pather Panchali (1955), Aparajito (1956), and The World of Apu (1959). Based on two novels by Bibhutibhushan Bandopadhyay, the trilogy chronicles a young Bengali boy’s growth from childhood to maturity with simplicity, power, poetry, grace, and generosity.

Two decades after its original negatives were burned in a fire, this landmark work has been miraculously restored frame-by-frame to enable a new generation to experience three of the most beautifuly realized, richly humane movies ever made.


Pather Panchali

(Song of the Road)
India 1955. Dir: Satyajit Ray. 125 min. DCP

“One of the ten greatest films in the history of cinema … The last masterpiece of neorealism.” J. HOBERMAN, VILLAGE VOICE

Satyajit Ray’s unforgettable debut burst upon the Western film world in much the same way Kurosawa’s Rashomon had several years before: as a revelatory bombshell introducing a previously unknown national cinema. Based on a renowned autobiographical novel by Bibhutibhushan Bandyopadhyay, Pather Panchali is the coming-of-age tale of brother and sister Apu (Subir Banerjee) and Durga (Uma Das Gupta), two children growing up in a poor Brahmin family in rural Bengal. Recounting their formative encounters with the sorrows, joys, and mysteries of life, Ray invests ordinary events with extraordinary poetry and power. Pather Panchali is a work of sublime simplicity, exquisite beauty, and heartrending lyricism, made in the best tradition of Ray’s two key influences: the humanism of Jean Renoir and the stylistic directness of Italian neorealism. The film’s score is by Ravi Shankar. In Bengali with English subtitles.

Pather Panchali screening days:
Friday, June 5, 2015 – 6:30pm
Saturday, June 6, 2015 – 4:00pm
Sunday, June 7, 2015 – 6:30pm
Monday, June 8, 2015 – 8:30pm



(The Unvanquished)
India 1956. Dir: Satyajit Ray. 109 min. DCP

“A masterpiece for which terms like ‘simplicity’ and ‘profundity’ seem inadequate.”

In Satyajit Ray’s second Apu film, winner of both the Golden Lion and International Critics Prize at Venice, young Apu and his family move from their rural village to the holy city of Benares (aka Varanasi), where Apu’s father has found work as a priest. A wonderfully well-observed and deeply moving work, rendered with Ray’s characteristic warmth, humour, and poetry, the film follows Apu (played here as a boy by Pinaki Sen Gupta and as a young man by Smaran Ghosal) through the trials and tribulations of family tragedy, growing mother-son conflict, and admission to the University of Calcutta. Karuna Banerjee is a standout as Apu’s mother. Ravi Shankar again provides the score. “More perceptive than any other study of adolescence that I know” (David Shipman). In Bengali with English subtitles.

Aparajito screeening days:
Friday, June 5, 2015 – 8:50pm
Saturday, June 6, 2015 – 6:30pm
Sunday, June 7, 2015 – 8:50pm
Tuesday, June 9, 2015 – 6:30pm



The World of Apu

(Apur sansar)
India 1959. Dir: Satyajit Ray. 105 min. DCP

“It is the kind of film one sees only once in a decade. Indisputably, it is one of the masterpieces of cinema.”

The touching, triumphant conclusion to Satyajit Ray’s Apu Trilogy begins in Calcutta with the young hero as an unemployed would-be writer. His fortunes take a most unexpected turn when he attends a friend’s cousin’s wedding; love, parenthood, and heartbreak are all in the offing for Apu as Ray’s luminous film moves towards its concluding notes of reconciliation and hope. The World of Apu is widely regarded as one of cinema’s most tender love stories. It introduced two actors who would become central performers in Ray’s cinema: Sharmila Tagore (a distant relative of Nobel Prize-winning writer Rabindranath Tagore) as Aparna, and Soumitra Chatterjee (soon to be Ray’s favourite leading man) as Apu. “One of the most vital and abundant movies ever made” (Time). “Rich and contemplative, and a great, convincing affirmation” (Pauline Kael). In Bengali with English subtitles.

The World of Apu
Saturday, June 6, 2015 – 8:35pm
Sunday, June 7, 2015 – 4:00pm
Monday, June 8, 2015 – 6:30pm
Tuesday, June 9, 2015 – 8:35pm


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