Image credits: Satyajit Ray, The Middleman, 1976 (still); image: courtesy Janus Films


The Middleman

Saturday, Oct 6, 2018

3:30 p.m.

“‘Calcutta is love and hate with me,’ Satyajit Ray once commented. ‘I have roots here. It can be a depressing place, but it’s vital.’ The Middleman, a black comedy, is a portrait of corruption born of chaos, and vice versa. Shot in the early days of Indira Gandhi’s ‘emergency rule,’ it describes a Calcutta of rampant unemployment, declining basic services…and politically inspired violence. Into this setting moves Ray’s protagonist, Somnath Bannerji, a hopeful young man of good (Brahmin) breeding who finds himself desperately struggling to reach the top. But, this being Calcutta, Somnath reaches only the middle, and ‘middleman’ is Bengali slang for ‘pimp.’” — BAMPFA

Film Details

Country: India

Language: Bengali

Year: 1975
Running time: 131 min

Director: Satyajit Ray

Screenwriter: Satyajit Ray

Producer: Subir Guha

Cinematographer: Soumendu Roy

Editor: Dulal Dutta
Source: Academy Film Archive

Films and schedules may be subject to change.

Modern Cinema’s Founding Supporters are Carla Emil and Rich Silverstein. Generous support is provided by Nion McEvoy and the Susan Wildberg Morgenstein Fund.