Government of West Bengal
Starring: Uma Das Gupta, Chunibala Devi
Directed by: Satyajit Ray
Cat Out of the Bag Alert! This review contains some spoilers for this film!
Synopsis: The classic story of a family in India who struggle during the absence of the father who has left them to look for work.
Cat Burglars (Scene Stealers): There are several cats throughout the film that live around the family’s home. They start as kittens who are cared for by the little girl, Durga (Uma Das Gupta). She pulls them out of a pot at the beginning of the film to feed them some milk (she even shoves one of the kitten’s muzzles down in the milk).
The kittens are seen in several of the early scenes, playing around the yard.
One of the kittens is even seen sleeping with Durga.
As the film progesses the children grow and so do the kittens. A multicolored cat is seen running after Durga in one scene.
The same cat is seen several times, running through various scenes.
Durga is also shown holding the cat as she talks to her mother.
The family’s dog also shares a scene with one of the kitties.
Kitty Carnage Warnings! While cats are obviously sharing their lives with this family, sadly they are given some rough treatment, especially in an early scene. An old aunt they call Aunty (Chunibala Devi) also lives with the family. She causes stress for the mother (Karuna Bannerjee) by stealing food, and after an argument Aunty is furious and packs to leave. A kitten is seen sitting outside the door when Aunty unceremoniously drops her packed bundle right on top of the poor thing.
But this is not the worst of it. Moments later Aunty grabs the kitten and literally throws it on the ground. This is a highly disturbing scene, and sadly will infuriate any cat lover.
Even Durga treats the kittens roughly, tossing the cat she is holding to the ground. It’s really a shame that these few sad moments should be included in what is a truly beautiful film.
Final Mewsings: No matter how old you are, you have no right to throw a kitten.