Two 8-year-old boys navigate a growing religious divide in this beautifully observed portrait of childhood set after the destruction of India’s Babri Mosque.
Prasun Chatterjee, Prosenjit Ranjan Nath, Soumya Mukhopadhyay, Ivy Yu-Hua Shen
Asik Shaikh, Arif Shaikh, Jayati Chakraborty
India 2021. 111min
With English subtitles
It’s 1993 and the Babri Mosque in Uttar Pradesh has recently been destroyed by a violent Hindu mob. Far away, in a remote village in West Bengal, two boys feel the aftershock of the incident, which will permanently cleave Indian society. In his feature debut, Prasun Chatterjee journeys into the lives of neighbours Safikul and Palash. Close friends, even though their personalities are like chalk and cheese, the boy’s lives are torn apart by fate and religion. Choosing to work with mostly non-professional actors, Chatterjee imbues Two Friends with an impressive authenticity. A piercing portrait of religious difference and a moving tale of friendship, Chatterjee’s film skilfully explores wider societal issues through the prism of an intimate, personal tale.
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