Abhijan Review

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A cabbie with no patience loses his licence. When he begins working off the books, he is drawn into the circles of the local criminal fraternity.


This Satyajit Ray film film about an ill-tempered taxi driver might have influenced Martin Scorsese, though the Indian director takes a different route. Heavily bearded cabbie Narsingh (Soumitra Chatterjee) loses his licence for overtaking and has to work off the books in a remote area, getting mixed up with crooks.

The proud-but-dim hero is hard to put up with, but Ray delivers interesting vignettes about the folks encountered along the way. Less known abroad than his Apu trilogy, this was Ray’s biggest hit in India, perhaps because it’s as much an episodic melodrama as an exercise in neo-realism.

It's an interesting fusion of styles in Indian cinema, for the most part successful.