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You Ought to Know: The Bengali Detective

When Rajesh Ji isn’t solving crimes in Kolkata, he’s moonlighting as a dancer with his team of detectives.

5 Mar, 2012

Siddhant Mehta

Contributing Writer

The Bengali Detective is an offbeat documentary that was released in early 2011. The documentary is set in Kolkata and follows the life and times of Rajesh Ji, the eponymous hero of this film. Kolkata is a huge, bustling Indian metropolis where a lot of crimes go unsolved by the local authorities. This is where Ji and his team come in. Ji is the founder of Always Investigating & Security Concern and alongside his team of detectives, he attempts to solve three crimes in this film.

The documentary is not all true crime and gritty detective work as it looks at this optimistic and happy man, and how he married his wife for love and is proud of his young son. This tender portrayal of his family life is still tinged with the harshness of reality as his wife suffers from chronic diabetes. Somehow, Ji manages to keep it all together by working hard at his job, providing for his family, and still making time for his passion for dance. Rajesh Ji takes his love for fancy footwork to a whole new level as he prepares to enter a TV dance contest with his team of detectives!

The Bengali Detective Trailer from Native Voice Films on Vimeo.

The Bengali Detective received favourable reviews from many leading film publications and critics such as Variety and The Hollywood Reporter. It also got screentime at big festivals such as the Sundance Film Festival and the Berlin International Film Festival. The protagonist of the movie, Rajesh Ji was given particular praise for his likable/quirky persona, and the technical aspects of the film such as the editing and camera work got plenty of plaudits as well. The Bengali Detective also aired on HBO in North America and the rights for the fictional version of the film has been bought by Fox Searchlight and Ridley Scott’s Scott Free Productions. The screenplay will be written by DV DeVincentis (High Fidelity, Lay the Favourite) and it will be directed by Stephen Frears (Tamara Drewe, The Queen).

With plenty of attention abroad, and the added fact that a huge production company along with accomplished professionals are attached to the upcoming fictional version (slated for release in 2014), we just thought you really ought to know about The Bengali Detective!

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