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Satyajit Ray’s Pather Panchali Declared The Best Indian Film Of All Time By FIPRESCI

A poll conducted by the India chapter of the International Federation of Film Critics (FIPRESCI) has decided the top 10 films in the history of Indian cinema. Satyajit Ray’s Pather Panchali has topped the list.

Based no Bibhutibhushan Bandyopadhyay’s 1929 Bengali novel of the same, Ray’s 1955 film marked his directorial debut, and was the first installment in his Apu Trilogy of films.

The film drew from the Italian Neorealism movement started by filmmakers such as Vittorio de Sica, Michelangelo Antonioni and Roberto Rosselini. Pather Panchali is often regarded as one of the greatest films ever made, and has admirers in Christopher Nolan, Martin Scorsese and Wes Anderson.

It was followed by Aparajito and Apur Sansar. The rest of the top 10 was dominated by filmmakers synonymous with the parallel film movement in India, which focused on social strife and politics and not mainstream entertainment.

Ritwik Ghatak’s 1960 drama Meghe Dhaka Tara was the number two film on the list, and was followed by Mrinal Sen’s 1969 drama Bhuvan Shome.

The number four, five and six films on the list were Adoor Gopalakrishnan’s 1981 Malayalam film Elippathayam, Girish Kasaravalli’s 1977 film Ghatashraddha, and MS Sathyu’s Garm Hava, which was released in 1973. Ray’s 1964 film Charulata took the seventh spot, and was followed by Shyam Benegal’s 1974 film Ankur, Guru Dutt’s 1954 film Pyaasa, and the Hindi blockbuster Sholay, directed by Ramesh Sippy and released in 1975.

The FIPRESCI was founded in 1930, and gives out awards at film festivals such as at the Vienna International Film Festival, the Toronto International Film Festival, the Cannes Film Festival, the Venice Film Festival, the Warsaw Film Festival, and the International Film Festival of Kerala).

The poll was conducted in secret, and involved 30 members of FIPRESCI – India.

No Tamil language film found a spot in the top 10, which included five Hindi films, three Bengali movies, and one each from the Malayalam and Kannada languages. (Courtesy:

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