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The Adversary (Pratidwandi) (Siddharta and the City) Reviews

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Super Reviewer

July 8, 2008
The first film in Ray's Calcutta Trilogy, about a young trying to cope in a city with Political unrest.
This is an overlooked classic by Ray, and one of my favourite's of his so far. The techniques used such as negative images, jump cuts and some brilliant dream sequences make it very similar to French new wave.
November 20, 2013
43 years have passed after the movie was launched - I couldn't believe how amazingly I could connect to the protagonist of the movie. The more you watch Ray's movies the deeper you delve into his genius.
Sourav R.
December 27, 2011
Pratidwandi is one of my favourite films of Satyajit Ray. In-fact, I'll place it above Apu trilogy and Charulata. This is political drama at its best. Set in the age of hippies, communism and newly born Naxalism, when Woodstock and the Vietnam war were fresh, the film reflects the bitterness and anger of an intelligent, sensitive young man engaged in the Herculean task of finding a job. This is one film that rightly depicts the Calcutta of the late sixties.

It was a difficult period for India and West Bengal. Corruption was rampant. Unemployment raged the youth of India. I absolutely loved the flashbacks and the way X-ray digressions have been employed by Ray. The ending scene was particularly marvellous, where the protagonist Siddharth, chooses ideology over helplessness. No wonder the inspiring communist of Hazaron Khwashein Aisi is also named Siddharth.

The film is stylistically experimental for Ray, featuring techniques inspired by the French New Wave, such as jump-cuts, edgy framing, dream sequences, and sexual metaphors. Some of the experimental techniques which the film pioneered include photo-negative flashbacks and X-ray digressions. There are a number of dream sequences which reminded me of Bergman's Wild Strawberries.
March 6, 2011
a 100 on RT...another Ray masterpiece we sorely miss now-a-days.
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