Bengali film Nagarkirtan, directed by Kaushik Ganguly, has won four awards at the 65th National Film Awards, which is the highest number of awards won by a single film this year. SS Rajamouli's blockbuster film Baahubali has won three awards, including Best Special Effects.
Besides Ridhhi Sen winning the Best Actor award, Nagarkirtan won three more awards including Best Costume (Gobindo Mondol), Best Make-up Artist (Ram Rajak) and Special Jury award. Another much-anticipated film Mayurakshi, directed by Atanu Ghosh, has earned the nod for Best Bengali film.
Ganguly's Nagarkirtan generated buzz last year as the movie revolves around a same-sex couple. A Calcutta High Court advocate had earlier written a complaint letter to the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) chairperson Prasoon Joshi questioning the certification of the film.
The film director was verbally asked by CBFC to cut three scenes from the movie to get the certification. Eventually, it got clearance certificate after the intervention by singer-turned-politician Babul Supriyo.
Ganguly had told Times of India, "He [Babul Supriyo] spoke to CBFC chairperson Prasoon Joshi. The regional office of the censor board did everything in its capacity to help us out. At least five good films would have lost out had the officials not mediated on time. He must understand the aesthetics of cinema and also be in sync with the sentiments of Bengal."
Here are a few reasons why Nagarkirtan is a must watch for all
Nagarkirtan portrays a same-sex love story, which is still a very taboo in our society. Hence the storyline leaves a significant mark in the history of Bengali cinema.
It features some of the best actors in the industry — Ridhhi Sen and Ritwik Chakraborty.
The movie also stars Manabi Bandyopadhyay, India's first transgender college principal and Bengal's first transgender professor. She is also the first transgendered person from West Bengal to complete a Ph.D.
The movie has been selected for many prestigious film festivals.
This is not the first same-sex movie directed by Ganguly. Previously, he directed Arekti Premer Golpo (Just Another Love Story) featuring Rituparno Ghosh. Also, last year Ganguly won National Film Award for his film Bishorjon.
On the other hand, Atanu Ghosh's Mayurakshi, featuring Soumitra Chattopadhyay, Prosenjit Chatterjee, Indrani Halder, Sudipta Chakraborty, and Gargee Roychowdhury, tells the story of a father-son relationship.
The movie revolves around a middle-aged man, who is going through an unsettling phase in his personal life. He comes to visit his 84-year-old father in India. During his visit, several long-lost chapters get reopened and his India visit becomes more eventful than his past.
Twitter is flooded with the tweets from well-wishers from the Bengali film industry. Here are some of the reactions.