Touquir Ahmed is creating a Bangladeshi Feluda and here’s your first look!

For any book-lover Bengali, from this side of the border or the other, the name Satyajit Ray is one that’s very close to the heart. His short stories, novels, horrors, thrillers- they’ve all been a huge part of all our childhood. And the largest of them all is the hero we all looked up to growing up, Pradosh Chandra Mitra, or who we know him more as, Feluda.

Soumitra Chatterjee was the very first portrayal of Feluda on the silver screens

Read more: Is Feluda coming to Hollywood?

A Bangladeshi Feluda?

Sharp wit, an even sharper tongue, piercing eyes, tall, mysterious- this enigmatic character has been attempted to be portrayed by generations after generations. The list of visionaries who had their own vision for Feluda includes Satyajit Ray himself, his son Sandeep Ray and also many other writers and directors.  The latest and most intriguing addition to this list is our very own Tauquir Ahmed, who’s shooting a web series on Feluda from 21st April, in various locations of Dhaka and Chittagong.

Sabyasachi has played the character for the longest period of time

Even after decades of Feluda’s arrival, there have never been any attempts at large to create and show his persona in our cultural sphere. All the dramas, plays that have been made, have been at a small scale, never adding much justice to this stellar character of Bengali literature.

The latest series about Feluda saw an Indian Feluda solving cases in Bangladesh’s context. It was still not our own Feluda.

The closest we came to presenting this iconic series was the Feluda series in bioscope- but even in that series, the titular characters of Feluda, Topshe and Laalmohan Babu were played by prominent actors from West Bengal, with Bangladesh providing with the background and Bangladeshi actors portraying only minor parts.

Hopefully, we’ll be able to rectify the situation a bit with a Bangladeshi actor playing the main part and the web series being produced solely in Bangladesh.

Stellar cast and crew

Considering the situation at hand, Tauquir Ahmed has enough awards and recognition under his belt to reassure the avid fans on the project’s success. His different outlook on Bangla cinema and TV has helped the industry gain a lot of the international acclamation it has today.

The entire cast has not been announced yet, only who’s going to portray Feluda and its Ahmed Rubel. We do see Abul Kalam Azad and Abul Hayat in some latest stills but details have not been divulged yet.

Ahmed Rubel, our own Feluda at last?

Given the performer and the character, so far it seems to be the most understandable match. For those of you who can’t place Ahmed Rubel, he is mainly a theatre and television actor, who also has proved his acting chops in films like “Bachelor: the circle”, “Guerilla”, “Chandrokoktha”, “The last Thakur” etc which are far from mainstream. Now the production house claims to have some sort of surprise in store for the two sidekicks- Topshe and Laalmohon Babu, and we hope its more Bangladeshi actor, with the originality of the character preserved.

In a country full of intense Bengali readers, it’s been a shame to not have our own version of Feluda, Topshe, Laalmohon and Maganlal Meghraj. About time we walk in the right direction.

A Noob’s guide to the horror universe

You know the weekend is just around the corner when you’re mindlessly staring at that desktop calendar and daydreaming about what to binge-watch on Netflix or getting that much-needed good night’s sleep when Friday strikes.

Speaking of Netflix, when was the last time you saw a good horror film with your friends?

It’s not surprising that some of us are afraid to watch horror movies, especially at night when we get this sudden burst of paranoia and last minute jitters as soon as the lights darken in the hall and our anxiety levels peak right before that first jump scare.

That being said, this particular genre is not for the faint-hearted. If you’re new to the world of horror I suggest we balance out the “fear metre” by starting out with the nail-biting popcorn flicks and then gradually moving on to the grittier stuff that causes trauma-inducing nightmares.

1.The Shining

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If you’re fascinated with the occult and supernatural themes then this timeless classic should be #1 on your watchlist!

Adapted from the best-selling novel by Stephen King, The Shining tells the story of Jack Torrance (Jack Nicholson), an aspiring writer and recovering alcoholic who becomes mentally unstable after moving in with his family to an isolated hotel that is seemingly haunted.

As Jack grows more psychotic, his wife and son desperately try to escape the hotel while fleeing from a murderous Jack who relentlessly chases after them.

Watch this cinematic masterpiece at your own risk! Or better yet be smart and don’t watch it at all.

2. The Sixth Sense

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If you felt The Shining wasn’t supernatural enough for you then this pick will definitely make your skin crawl!

The Sixth Sense is a nerve-racking movie that’ll leave you feeling more disturbed than scared.

This nostalgic classic from the 90’s tells the story of a gifted, but troubled boy named Cole Sears (Haley Joel Osment) who has the ability to see and converse with the dead and an equally troubled child psychologist Malcolm Crowe (Bruce Willis) who tries his best to help him.

If ghosts give you the creeps then I recommend you stick with this movie till the very end and spoiler alert! There’s more than one twist to this story.

3.  The Ring (2002)

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Since we’re moving along with the supernatural horror category, I’d say it’s only fair we add The Ring to the list.

When I mentioned earlier that horror is not for the faint-hearted I really meant it! If this film doesn’t send chills down your spine then the scream of the person sitting next to you will.

A remake of the 1998 Japanese movie of the same name, the story of The Ring is about a mysterious videotape that leaves a deadly curse hanging onto whoever watches it, eventually causing that person to brutally die within 7 days.

Rachel Keller (Naomi Watts) is a journalist who attempts to uncover the truth behind the video and in the process ends up fighting for her own life and her son’s.

If you’re bored on a Friday night and got nothing else planned then you can trust this film to liven the atmosphere. But be warned though! You might get more than what you asked for.

4. Get Out

Coming back to the more grounded and realistic movies, here’s an off-beat story that’ll certainly give newcomers a few goosebumps.

While ghosts and haunted houses are recurring themes in the horror universe they aren’t necessarily the most frightening.

Sometimes the best dread comes from psychological horror and that’s exactly what Get Out is all about.

The film centers around a young African-American named Chris Washington (Daniel Kaluuya) as he accompanies his Caucasian girlfriend to meet her parents at a secluded estate in a remote countryside. But Chris soon encounters unusual occurrences within the isolated community; particularly the strange behavior he receives from her parents.

This movie isn’t your typical screamer; it’s a weird mix between satire and psychological thriller infused with some old school horror clichés but with a storyline that’ll keep you invested at all times.

5. Hush

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Now let’s take a look at a film that takes horror back to its basics: “blood and gore”

If there’s one film that today’s generation can relate to on a personal level it might as well be Hush.

This heart-pounding slasher pick will raise your anxiety levels to unexpected heights as you struggle to keep your eyes open without gasping every few minutes.

The plot follows a young female author named Maddie Young (Kate Siegel) who retreats to an isolated cabin in the woods after a failed corrective surgery resulted in the loss of her ability to both hear and speak.

As night falls, a masked figure quietly stalks Maddie from outside the cabin, stealing her phone and threatening her by sending photos of her typing on the computer using her own social media account.

Once Maddie realizes she’s in danger it quickly becomes a cat-and-mouse game, as she attempts to survive the night by searching ways to outwit and ultimately escape her potential killer.

If you want the full jump scare experience then this is it! But that’s only half the horror the other half is realizing the fact that sometimes the best person to protect you is yourself.

6. The Conjuring

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Warning! Don’t watch this movie alone unless you’re planning on getting a series of panic attacks.

Circling back one last time to the supernatural theme leads us to The Conjuring.

Loosely based on historical events, this sinister tale follows paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren as they attempt to help the Perron family understand the increasingly disturbing incidents which plague their rural farmhouse in Rhode Island.

As the story unfolds, more light is shed on the history of the house and the gruesome details concerning the previous family who resided there.

RECAP

All things considered, the horror genre is pretty unique in the sense that you never know what to expect.

Follow this guide and take the baby steps or puff your chest and go straight for all the A-list titles if you think you’re strong enough to survive one heart attack after another.

 

 

The Beatles doesn’t exist…in the movie ‘Yesterday’

‘Yesterday’, the Danny Boyle movie due this June, is about a world where ‘The Beatles’ doesn’t exist. By the looks of its first trailer, the musical-comedy promises to rock.

Directed by Danny Boyle, from a screenplay by Richard Curtis and a story by Jack Barth, ‘Yesterday’ centres around a guy named Jack Malik. Jack is a run of the mill musician. He fails as a performer, but his girlfriend comforts him assuring ‘miracles’ do happen. One fateful night, a global power outage occurs. Following the worldwide load-shedding, Jack succumbs to a road accident. He survives but loses a pair of front teeth. As soon as he recovers and returns to normal life, he realizes nobody in this world recognizes ‘The Beatles’ anymore, except him. The Fab Four is completely erased from history, even from the internet. But Jack remembers all of their songs and can play them as well!

Jack is bewitched to see that John, Paul, Ringo and George are completely forgotten, but he also unleashes opportunity to reintroduce Beatlemania to the new generation. Willingly or not, Jack becomes a superstar by singing songs of ‘The Beatles’. His fans and critics commend his godsend songwriting ability (!) which Jack denies to be credited for. Meanwhile, he soars to stardom and eventually gets alienated from Ellie, his love interest.

What happens next can only be known when ‘Yesterday’ releases in June 28th. Jack Malik is played by Himesh Patel. Ed Sheeran makes a guest appearance as well.

Chris Hemsworth wraps up filming “DHAKA”, the film not filmed in Dhaka

Chris Hemsworth released photos and videos straight from the set of “Dhaka” on his Instagram account recently. The Australia-born star has apparently wrapped up filming his parts in the movie.

No, you probably will not run into Chris this week

To clarify, he was never in Dhaka, the city itself. The movie was filmed in Thailand and India. Those who ventured into Chris and the rest of the crew’s Instagram saw rickshaws and trucks with Bangla written on them. That was just part of a great set building.

An action thriller

In “Dhaka”, Hemsworth plays a mercenary called Tyler Rake. His character is hired by an Indian businessman to retrieve said businessman’s kidnapped son, who is held in Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh in the action thriller. Hemsworth’s character is described as a physically competent man of vulnerable emotional state. And Hemsworth isn’t the only familiar face from the Marvel Cinematic Universe franchise in the movie. Sam Hargrave makes his feature directorial debut with this film. For those unaware, Hargrave is MCU character Captain America’s stunt double. Stranger things star David Harbour is also one of the supporting casts in the movie.

The “Marvel” factor?

The Russo brothers, directors of several MCU movies including Captain America: Winter Soldier and Avengers: Infinity war, are producing “Dhaka” through their independent production house. Although Hemsworth’s parts in the movie have been wrapped up, the production is expected to continue at least until March.  We don’t have a concrete release date as of right now. So we’ll just have to wait and see how a depiction of our capital city pans out in a Hollywood film.

If you think about it, Dhaka is a character in the film too, since it’s being portrayed by some other, flashier, perhaps better looking city.