Dev New Bengali Movie: Bagha Jatin Movie Review, The 19th-century youth, driven by the goal of dismantling societal hierarchies, relied on knowledge, logic, and scholarship as their weapons, steering clear of guns and bombs. Figures like Derozio, Rammohan-Vidyasagar, and the advent of the printing press marked the ‘Bengali Renaissance,’ fostering a gradual transformation.
However, by the early 20th century, a shift occurred, with a group of young revolutionaries redirecting their energy. One hundred years ago, these youths turned from their intellectual pursuits to the more radical path of armed resistance against British colonial rule. The common thread between this new era and the Young Bengal movement lies in their initial lack of a clear direction, as Hemchandra Das Kanungo noted at the beginning of ‘Bangla’s Revolutionary Effort,’ stating, “To execute this entirely new endeavor within our country, we must first chart our course.”
In 1902, the Secret Committee’s influence spread across Bengal, and British authorities began closely monitoring the activities of various organizations, including ‘Anushilan Samiti’ and ‘Yugantar.’ Amidst these developments, the 1903 partition of Bengal, as reflected in Andrew Fraser’s letter, gained prominence. The partition took effect on October 16, 1905, triggering ‘Arandhan’ or ‘Rakhi Bandhan,’ an event referred to as ‘changing history’ by Rabindranath Tagore.
During this period, a young man named Jatindranath Mukhopadhyay, known as ‘Bagha Jatin,’ gained notoriety after confronting white military personnel who were harassing women during the Prince of Wales’s procession in Calcutta.
Arvind Ghosh and his brother Barin Ghosh, who had earlier left for overseas during the Bengal fires, Hemchandra Das Kanungo, who had learned bomb-making in Paris and returned from London, and Cheerleader Dutt, who had faced brutality at the hands of a professor, initiated the first wave of revolutionary movements among the restive Bengalis. However, the second wave of the revolution took place with Rashbehari Basu joining hands with Bagha Jatin, Subhash Chandra Basu’s INA military and war preparations, and the inception of large-scale international conspiracies. The movie ‘Baagha Jatin,’ directed by Arun Roy and starring Dev, provides an insightful depiction of this historical period, meticulously tracing events such as political assassinations, the Indo-German conspiracy, arms looting, and attempts to assassinate officials.
Although some creative liberties are taken in the film, it’s important to note that this is not a documentary but a feature film. Dev takes on the lead role with admirable performances by Sudipta Chakraborty as Jatin’s sister Vinodbala and Srija Dutt as Jatin’s wife Indubala. The film’s supporting cast, including Sajal Mandal, Sumant Roy, Sandeep Ghosh, Collage Sengupta, and Samiul Alam, offers captivating performances.
Dev’s portrayal of Jatin is brimming with emotion, and he clearly embodies the character. This film is undoubtedly a standout in his filmography. Although the music is not particularly memorable, Rupam Islam’s rendition of ‘Jaago Re Bagha’ is a pleasant inclusion. Nilayan Chatterjee’s music and the background narration by Mir Afsar Ali contribute to the film’s overall appeal. The movie, with its focus on historical accuracy and powerful performances, is destined to leave a lasting impression.