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THE CHESS PLAYERS

India, 1977 (MIFF 1978)

Director: Satyajit Ray

This is Satyajit Ray's first film with Hindi and English dialogue. It is also his first historical film, set in mid-nineteenth century India. It is based on a short story by Munshi Premchand.

Two Nawabs, Mirza and Meer, are chess addicts in Lucknow. They play out their repeated battles, ignoring the needs of their wives and their country. The East India Company is attempting to bring their province under British rule in order to enlarge the Company's future profits. Orders are sent to the British Resident, General Sir James Outram to extract, on a trumped-up pretext, the abdication of the local king, Wajid Ali Shah.

Meanwhile the besotted chess players, too absorbed with their game and their personal quarrels, ignore the British troops that are on the move to depose their king.

See also...

THE ADVENTURES OF GOOPY AND BAGHA

India, 1968
Goopy is a singer who cannot sing and he meets Bagha, a drummer, after they have both been driven from their respective villages. They sing and play to disperse their fears during ... a night in the … More »

PATHER PANCHALI

India, 1955
The 1956 Cannes Festival was remarkably rich in entries from famous directors. ^ Yet-in warmth, humanity and poetic sensitivity none could measure up to the first work of an outstanding film-maker - … More »

APARAJITO

India, 1957
This is the second film of Satyajit Ray's trilogy which began with the remarkable Father Panchali, shown at last year's Festival. At the end of part one, Harihar, his wife Sarbojaya, and their son Ap… More »

WORLD OF APU

India, 1958
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 - R… More »

JALSAGHAR

India, 1958
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 mem… More »

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