A village landowner exploits a member of the “untouchable” Dukhi caste in Ray's steely interrogation of the Indian class system, “told with stark visuals and the power of a parable” (Film Society of Lincoln Center). The great actor Om Puri stars as the exploited laborer, whose work, and eventual fate, is treated with disdain by his landed employer. “Ray's anger is never apparent-a Marxist like Mrinal Sen would certainly have made the film very differently,” noted Derek Malcom in The Guardian. “Yet his icily clear view of what the story is about is everywhere apparent.”

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