2023 Blind Spot Series: The Big City


What I knew going in: Nothing!

Arati (Madhavi Mukherjee) is a housewife in 1960's Calcutta. When her husband's job isn't bringing in enough for them to survive, she takes a job as a sales woman and befriends an Anglo-Indian, Edith (Vicky Redwood) who gives her a different outlook on life. 

I'm fairly sure I added this film to my Blind Spot List after someone else blogged about it too. When I sat down to watch this today, I really went in blind. It's been so long since I've read anything about it and what a surprise. 

We love a feminist film, and watching Arati come into her own was satisfying. She is such a fully realized character. Strong, smart, a little shy, but as soon as she's given the freedom she needs, she soars. Even though her family isn't thrilled about her new job, she does her best and what more could we ask for?

The film does slow down a bit when it's not focused on Arati, but those scenes are few and far between. I was really blown away by how much I enjoyed this. Now I'll have to check out some of Mukherjee's and director Satyajit Ray's filmography.

Grade: A


  1. I'm glad you liked this film as I first discovered Satyajit Ray through Wes Anderson and his film The Darjeeling Limited as I wanted to see his films at that time but they weren't in great quality until the 2010s when Criterion did a lot of work to restore a lot of his films. This is your first Ray and certainly a surprising one as there's a bunch of films that I own that I need to watch. The Apu Trilogy is a must-see while I would also recommend Charulata, The Music Room, The Hero, and Devi as he's just phenomenal. Plus, if you are familiar with The Darjeeling Limited. You will hear some music that are from Ray's films as Ray did much of his own music.

    1. It must have been your blog that put this on my radar. I did enjoy The Darjeeling Limited. I want to check out more of his work now.

  2. I'm completely unfamiliar with this as well. If I recall correctly when you posted your list I incorrectly thought you meant a Spencer Tracy/Luise Rainer film from the 30's titled "Big City" which I have seen (it's an okay film but don't go out of your way). Be that as it may I've only seen three of Ray's films but this one sound interesting.

    1. Ah, I haven't seen that Big City, I noticed there was another film with this title. But this one was very good, definitely recommend!


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