Skip to main content

TWO DAUGHTERS

India, 1961 (MIFF 1962)

Director: Satyajit Ray

Made to celebrate the centenary of Rabindranath Tagore, "Two Daughters" is based on a duo of his short stories, "The Postmaster and "Samapti". The director, Satyajit Ray, has described them as divertimenti to be enjoyed in the spirit of a festival. They are comedies, but, as in all good comedies, the richness of the humour depends on serious preoccupations.

In the first tale Mr. Nanda, a Calcutta poet paying his way as a postmaster, is transferred to an outback depot. Jungle life quickly wears him down. His nerves are shattered and he resigns from the postal service to return to Calcutta; but in doing so he fails a little servant-girl whom he has been teaching. This orphan stands for all the underprivileged in their hopeless bravery, which is beautifully caught in the final scene, as Nanda slinks away from the depot. The girl passes him, and as he offers her a rupee she proudly ignores him . . .

In "Samapti", a self-centred young law student arrives home for the holidays. His mother wants him to marry, and has chosen a girl; but he tells her that he is attracted to Puglee, a tomboy. The mother is horrified. Puglee, she cries out, is a shrew, wild, impossible . . . The marriage, nevertheless, is arranged. The girl does not want to marry but, due to conventions, she must. Eventually though, it is all too much for her, and on her wedding night she rebels. When the mother discovers that the marriage hasn't been consummated, a scandal of absurd proportions breaks out—she wails and slaps the girl, neighbours are delightfully shocked, and the ineffectual young man slips sadly into the garden . . .

See also...

Monihara

Monihara, a ghost story based on a tale by Rabmdranath Tagore, is told by a dishevelled teacher to a silent, dark-clad figure on a river bank. Phanibhushan, a rich jute merchant, brings his beautiful ... More »

JALSAGHAR

Jalsaghar is one of the few films made by Salyafit Ray. apart from the great Bengali trilogy about the life of the boy Apu. It leisurely and patientty unfolds Ihe story of the decline of the last ... More »

THE ELEPHANT GOD

Each new film by Satyajit Ray brings with it fond memories of earlier privileged moments from this master of cinema. Ray has now been at the height of his powers for some years, and his work in the ... More »

WORLD OF APU

So much has already been written about Pather Panchali and Aparajito that Ray's trilogy was destined for classic status even before the release of the third instalment, and the various influences ... More »

The Inner Eye

A film tribute to an eminent artist Binodebehari Mukherjee of Santiniketan. The art and life of Binodebehari is unique, for at birth he was blind in one eye and lost the other in 1953. and yet his ... More »

THE MUSIC ROOM

This film was made between the second and third parts of the Apu trilogy. Where the trilogy shows the gradual breaking up of the simple traditional family life and religion, and their replacement by ... More »

Select a festival
Search The Film Archive
Browse By Director