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Customer Reviews

2.8 out of 5 stars
14
Goddess (Devi) - (Mr Bongo Films) (1960)
Format: DVD|Change
Price:$37.08+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime


on October 3, 2014
This is a wonderful movie, but not surprising in that it was directed by Satyajit Ray.

It should also bring to Western audiences a reminder of how important goddesses are in India. Western audiences are used to thinking of Indian women as oppressed (and there is some truth in that) but the other part of the story tends not to be told by Western media.

Hinduism splits into three major and many minor parts. The three major parts are worshipers of Vishnu, worshipers of Shiva, and worshipers of a goddess, usually Durga in one of her many aspects. Goddess worship is very prominent in Gujarat and Bengal.
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on August 3, 2017
Unfortunately, it arrived a day later than it was expected, so I was not able to take it with me on my trip. We were going to watch it at an international workshop/seminar.
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on February 1, 2014
Despite being promoted as playable in all regions, this Mr. Bongo disc will not play on new DVD equipment in the U.S. We have here a case not of deceptive advertising but of outright fraud.
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on November 11, 2013
This is a great, 5-star movie, but the image quality of this version is very poor. It is grainy, scratchy, and the contrast is so high the much of the fine chiaroscuro cinematography is lost in black. Be warned.
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on July 14, 2014
Not region 1 -- received PAL. Won't play on any of my dvd players.
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on August 11, 2015
Wonderful! Thank you.
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on July 19, 2015
Would not play on my DVD player. Waiting for Criterion to pick it up.
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on March 24, 2011
BE WARNED: This DVD will not play on my standard Sony DVD player even though Amazon describes it as "Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only.)" The reason is that it is in PAL format. So dig through the fine print in your DVD player manual to make sure that it will play PAL format before you buy this DVD. My Region 1 Sony will play NTSC only, so it will not play it.
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on August 9, 2009
Devi (The Goddess) is a film set in India over a century ago that explores tradition, religious beliefs, and assuming the role of a god. A young woman named Dayamoyee leads a simple life as the wife of Umaprasad who is finishing his studies to be a position to become even wealthier. She cares for her father-in-law, Kalikinkar Roy, who adores her for helping him every time he calls her. Because Dayamoyee is so caring and Kalikinkar no longer has a wife, he callers her mother. Kalikinkar is deeply religious and prays to the Hindu goddess, mother Kali, but one day dreams both mothers are the same. He believes Dayamoyee is an incarnation of the goddess Kali.

At first Dayamoyee is hesitant because she is torn between her old life and her potential new one. She is transformed from a position of servitude to one of power. But the new role is not without its difficulties. She enjoys the attention but is now treated as someone who is untouchable and all-powerful. Life as a goddess is not at all easy as it is a burden as well.

As all this happened when Umaprasad was away at school, when he returns he is quite horrified. He symbolizes the new generation, which has different beliefs. To him, the line between religion and superstition has been crossed. Umaprasad tries to reason with her and his father but doesn't have an easy time. In effect we have conflict with the new generation with the old generation (or the son and the father) over religious traditions.

Those less familiar with India may find this movie to be especially exotic because it portrays a vibrant culture and different way of life. The interesting story is made spellbinding by the captivating music. If you enjoy world cinema Devi is worth checking out.
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on July 14, 2010
Satyajit Ray shows an inner struggle between traditional and modern values in Indian life,urban and rural.Devi(The Goddess 1960) explores the dangers of religious fanaticism and superstition.We see Kali,the Hindu deity,whose statue is adorned and carried in a religious festival,fireworks and her being cast adrift from the river bank.Uma(Chatterji) will resume his university studies in Calcutta leaving his shy,beautiful wife Doya(Tagore)apprehensive about the prolonged separation.He asks her to write daily,declaring his studies useful for a better job,and the ennoblement of knowledge.This is mid-19th century Bengal.

Doya dotes on her nephew Kohka and attends to the needs of her wealthy father-in-law Roy(Biswas),who calls her "mother" as a term of endearment.Roy has a dream that Doya is the reincarnation of goddess Kali.She,fearful of displeasing her father-in-law's delusion, is manipulated and transformed into the image of Kali.Roy's revelation is disseminated throughout the village,the gullible Doya accepts the worship of the people around her as they pay homage or seek assistance from the goddess.When a young boy is seemingly healed,devotion turns to fanaticism,as the destructive power of ignorance takes hold in the absence of rational thought.

Her husband returning is shocked and tries to free her through persuasion and reason,but she has begun to believe, losing all sense of her own individuality.She becomes a victim of a quarrel that develops between her husband and father-in-law. The repeated imagery of window bars, darkness and shadows, and veils and curtains reflect the pervasive sense of confinement, oppression, and unenlightenment within the household.We see the fragility of spirituality in a decadent,selfish,indulgent society.She becomes imprisoned and at the mercy of the people when things go wrong.
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