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Celluloid and Rituparno Ghosh: Beyond the Tradition and Myth

Partha Bhattacharjee M.A. (English), West Bengal, India. Abstract An untimed demise of Rituaprno Ghosh (31 August 1963 30 May 2013) is certainly shocking not merely to Tollygunge but rather to Bollywood and Overseas also. He is one of the successful contemporary directors, achieving both the national and international accreditation. He has directed twenty released films and bears the legacy of Satyajit Ray. In the first phase he had presented such themes which are related to our daily life and untouched till date. The audience can relate their life with characters. Ghosh made his directorial debut in feature film with Hirer Angti in 1992 and after that he took the family relationship as the subject of his film genre. Unishe April (1994), loosely base on Bergmans August Sonata, breaks the myth of Motherhood in Indian culture where a mother naming Sarojini, a well-known danseuse , after the sudden demise of her husband, does take care of her daughter, Aditi and forgets the death anniversary of her husband. Misunderstanding and temperamental conflicts helped the audience to think beyond the psychological treatment by Ghosh. Dahan a film on marital rape, Bariwali story of a lonely middle aged Banalata, Asukh and Utsab dealt with the theme of different common and complex problems being faced by a middle-class family. In the second phase Ghosh has experimented his films with some Bollywood actors Chokher Bali, Raincoat, Antaramahal, Dosar, The Last Lear to name a few. In Chokher Bali and Noukadubi he dealt with some subversion of Tagores original stories, he represented that Chokher Bali in a manner that re-explores the consequences of the widows marginality in the colonial context. The scopophilic pleasure is represented with Binodinis physical representation. Ghosh consciously uses the marginal space of the widows body as source of both sexual titillation and threat. And unfortunately in the last phase (his sudden demise disappointed the audience) he tried to question the basic marriage institution. Ghosh was considered an icon of the LGBT community of India. He explored transgender lifestyles. He had filmed in Chitrangada: The Crowning Wish (2012) a choreographer Rudra Chatterjee going against the social convention: Rudra is in love affair with

Partho and decides to go through Sex Reassignment Surgery with a view to embrace the womanhood. Arekti Premer Golpo (2010) is based on transgender documentary filmmaker, whose bisexual lover is the cinematographer. The recent advent of this genre in Bengali film and the portrayal of male gaze and female gaze in the term of L. Mulvey, emphasising the erotic female body, is really challenging for the critics to deal about. The subject of this paper is to investigate how R. Ghosh has created his own space in celluloid with his sui generis style and treatment.