The Adversary (Pratidwandi) (Siddharta and the City) - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

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

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May 11, 2017
Satyajit Ray's oeuvre includes not only lyrical neorealist classics such as Pather Panchali and the other films of the Apu Trilogy but other films that feel a lot more like psychodramas (e.g., Charulata). Pratidwandi (The Adversary) falls into this latter category, getting us into the mind of the protagonist, Siddhartha Chaudhuri, as he searches rather hopelessly for a job after giving up on medical school. We see his resistance to those in authority but we don't gain much insight into its aetiology. His father has died and he needs to take care of his family but many of his friends seem as aimless as he does (although he seems smarter and more thoughtful). As his empty fruitless days begin to run together, his mind starts to wander - and we are treated to brief inserts of medical school lectures, "negative" images, and other non-realistic interruptions. When he accidentally meets a young woman who he could be interested in, he seems to get a grip (although she may be losing hers). In the end, the episode may have passed, and could be a rite of passage (in fact) or Ray may be commenting on the problems of youth in contemporary society more broadly. As a moody character study, it works.
February 25, 2017
My favorite film of Ray yet.
December 6, 2014
Mindblowing! One of the most impressive films I have ever seen. Dhritiman Chatterjee as Siddhartha (the protagonist) was just brilliant. Ray's immortal cinematic style, breathtaking sound design & superb cinematography enriched it.
½ 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.
½ August 17, 2012
Ending makes me remind it forever.....
May 7, 2012
ray's experimental directing in this movie can only be described as a work of art,nothing else
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.
December 30, 2009
Once saw the opening dialogue impressed me immensely.
Want to see it definitely!!!
½ September 30, 2009
Ending makes me remind it forever.....
½ September 26, 2009
An excellent Ray with obvious influences from the French New Wave.
December 25, 2008
That revolution in your head can't quite face up to the real world.
½ December 2, 2008
Probably the most accessible of S. Ray's films, due to a faster pace of events and that it deals with more western philosophies. The ending is worth waiting for.
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.
July 3, 2008
Perhaps the most "European" of Ray's movies, with a looser narrative, quick little flashbacks and fantasies, and sequences in negative. And these are the most internationally aware of Ray's characters -- they discuss Vietnam, read Playboy, go to Swedish pornos, study Che Guevara and eat Chinese food (with utensils, even!). There's some great little moments. This movie isn't as moralistic as Seemabaddha or Jana Aranya, but it does have a striking revolutionary spirit to it.
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