Thursday, January 14, 2010


“Saaransh” is a story of two setting suns whose only light to life has been snatched in foreign soil. An aged couple instead of preparing for their last rites is struggling to live some more days bearing loss of their only offspring.  

A student of Nuclear Energy at a university in New York is killed in an attack by muggers. His aged parents (B.B. Pradhan and Parvati) at Bombay are completely devastated to bear his loss. B.B. Pradhan, a retired school Headmaster, played by Anupam Kher, has tuition to pay his house’s expenditure bills. His wife Parvati (Rohini Hattangadi) engages herself in a child care home despite his refusal. Their son, the only hope of their rayed life, has been limited to photographs in the walls. Pradhan becomes very frustrated with his life. He neither has a good
job nor anything to support him and his wife. He even attempts suicide but his fate is to live by anyhow.

Parvati can’t accept that her son is gone. Her religious upholding lot, and beliefs in her Guru, makes her await her son to return by rebirth. Entry of Sujata Suman (Sony Razdan), a paying guest, to their home dramatizes the story.  She becomes pregnant following her illicit affair with Vilas (Madan Jain), who has even given her words to marry. Vilas is the only son of a powerful local politician named Gajanan Chitre. Vilas suggests Sujata for abortion for he lacks guts to admit to his father that he wants to marry her. It makes Sujata to feel like used. She refuses abortion.

Pradhan finds it out and offer Sujata to meet Chitre with the hope that he would accept her as daughter in law. But Chitre refuses it. He even threatens them of dire consequences. The case of Sujata seems to worsen Chitre’s election campaign. He continuously begins harassing Pradhan family and Sujata to pressurize them to abort the child. But the secret agenda of Pradhan and his wife to accomplish their son in the incoming child lures them to protect Sujata from Chitre. Pradhan files a complaint at local police post but is told that they cannot even touch Chitre’s man. Pradhan, a stubborn old man, goes up to the judiciary level to seek shelter of his condition, and is finally assured.

Pradhan is frightened of his wife's growing tempt for the child and it helps him foresee the consequences that my ruin Sujata and Vilas- who has finally agreed to marry despite his father’s refusal. He requests Sujata and Vilas to run off his house without the knowledge of his wife, but Sujata refuses to leave without greeting a goodbye to Parvati. To Parvati, saying goodbye to them is like accepting the death of her only child. Parvati seems in no condition to afford it. She begs with Sujata and Vilas not to take her son away from her, but Pradhan, already down to earth, lets them go. Pradhan finally succeeds to draw the vivid picture in the mind of Parvati, and admits that their living together the remaining days of their life is the only “Saaransh”.  

“Saransh” was nominated for India's official entry for the 1985 Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. Anupam Kher (28), making his debut to screen, has played the role of an old stubborn man. He is fabulous in the movie.  Mahesh Bhatta, who does not have remarkable movies to his name in the recent days, proves that he has great adoration for art movies. The music, songs, and the beatings at some poignant moments have a perfect blend. The full artistic touch to the movie is noteworthy.

(I’m really grateful to Manoj Pundit dai for suggesting me to watch this movie.)

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