Chakra (1981)

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Chakra (1981) Poster

Amma lives in Bijapur with her husband and son, Benwa. When a man attempts to sexually molest her, he is killed by her husband, the trio flee, but the husband is shot dead by the police. ... See full summary »

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7/10
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Awards

6 wins.

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5 March 2005 | ravenus
8
| Promising debut, sadly the director died soon after
The only film made by Rabindra 'Robin' Dharmaraj since he died soon after, even before it got released. Chakra is a gritty, realistic and mostly interesting look at the daily goings-on in a slum population. Thankfully the film doesn't expect you to sympathize with the class of people it is about, only to present a fleshed out social document of the particular (yes, this is not a generic wail at social inequality or such crap) community it deals with.

Following the life of Amma (Smita Patil in another solid performance) a feisty sexually active widow who labors to eke out existence for herself and her teenage son, the story in anecdotal fashion examines the peculiar social and moral setup of this tribe where survival for the next day justifies all means to obtain it. The film has a decent assortment of interesting characters and the documentary aspect is delivered without any cheap holier-than-thou posturing.

The end seems to come together a bit hodge-podgedly with an obviously forced element of drawing the full circle, so to say. But Chakra remains an interesting product of the Indian New Wave and given the genuinely intelligent touch with which he helms one may likely have seen other worthy films from Dharmaraj if he hadn't passed away so early.

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