Don’t miss this movie!

Chander Pahar

 

The Plot (from the link above)

Chander Pahar is the story of a young Bengali man’s adventures in Africa in the years 1909-1910. Shankar Roy Chowdhury, the protagonist, is a 20-year old man, recently completed his FA (First Arts)(graduation) and about to take up a job in a jute mill, a prospect he absolutely loathes.

He yearns for adventure, wild lands, forests and animals. He wants to follow the footsteps of famous explorers like LivingstoneMungo ParkMarco Polo, all of whom he has read about and idolizes. By a stroke of luck, he secures a job as a clerk in Uganda Railwaythrough a fellow villager already working there and goes to Africa without a second thought.

He takes up a job as station master in desolate station. One Fine Evening Shankar gets chased by a Man-eating Lion and luckily he reaches his cabin and locks the door. The next day he asks the head station master to provide him with a Springfield Bolt Action Gun and some carbolic acid as a day before he encounters another hazard in Africa: the poisonous black mamba. He miffs the black mamba with his torchlight. Next day he gets these things via another fellow Indian Tirumal Appa who is serving the British army. They quickly strike a rapport and Tirumal visits him often and gives him company till one day a mishappening happens, Tirumal himself becomes victim of same Man eater Lion. This rages Shankar and he decides to end this peril, he uses himself as a bait by pouring blood on himself and scatters meat chunks in way tempting the lion out of his cave and eventually shots him down. He also rescues and looks after the middle-aged Portuguese explorer and gold prospector, Diego Alvarez. The encounter with Alavarez influences him deeply. Alavarez tells him of his earlier exploits and adventures, how he and his companion Jim Carter had braved deep jungles and mountains of Richtersveld to find the largest diamond mine. However, they were thwarted by the legendary Bunyip, a mythical monster which guards the mines which killed Carter.

Shankar gives up his job and accompanies Alvarez as he decides to venture out once more and find the mines again. They meet with innumerable hardships,The First one a ragingvolcanowhich explodes and forces them to halt their expedition and then one night they were attacked by the monster Bunyip . Eventually they get lost in the forests where Alvarez is killed by the monster, in an effort to save Shankar’s life. Desolated Shankar Mourns the death of Alvarez deeply and buries him with all rites and set sail for his expedition towards the mountain of moon.

Shankar sets out to reach civilization. He finds the diamond mines by accident. He enters the cave but eventually gets lost. With great difficulty, he gets out, marking his way with “pebbles” and taking some back with him as memento, not knowing each is a piece of uncut diamond. He finds the remains of the Italian explorer, Attilio Gatti, and learns that the cave he found earlier really was the diamond mine. Gatti, as Shankar learns from a note by him, had uncut diamonds in his boots. The note said that whoever reads the note can take the diamonds as long as he buries his skeleton, with Christian rites. Shankar does so, and keeps the old diamonds.Accidentally while crossing the jungle he comes in contact with the bunyip’s cave Filled with revenge he devises a plan to get rid of bunyip. Shankar collects wood from Jungle and sharpen their tip as sharp as spear and in a process he fences the entrance with sharpened wood and wait for the bunyip. The Bunyip eventually turns up and seeing its prey jumps at it from height, Shankar eventually moves out and the bunyip gets peirced within the sharpened wood & dies. Shankar tries to move out by following the compass,He becomes lost in the deserts of Kalahari and nearly dies of thirst. Fortunately he is rescued by a survey team, and taken to a hospital in SalisburyRhodesia, When he recovers he sells 4 of his diamonds and gets lots of money and One diamond he sends to his Parents with a note to sell it and help the villagers with its money.Next he sells his sole diamond and buys a steamer boat to continue his exploration.He ends the book saying that he will return to that cave one day with a large team, and continue the legacy of Alvarez, Carter and Gatti.

 

I give this movie 4 out of 5 stars. So well made! I was so much into the movie that there was not even a single moment of boredoom (which is a lot to say, considering how yawn-evoking some recent movies have been). Yes, at the end of it you might think that there was no plausible explanation given for certain things. But I can very well ignore them. Or maybe cut that 1 star from the ratings 😉

 

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