Kolkata: Rainbow Jelly, billed as the first food fantasy film in Bengali, has almost been edged out of theatres in the second week of its release. A popular online ticketing portal revealed only four shows in two different multiplex chains in the city. Both these chains operate several theatres in and around Kolkata.
Directed by Soukarya Ghosal, Rainbow Jelly released on 25 May, and garnered positive to very positive reviews from critics and the audience who saw the film. The film has Mahabrata Basu, Anumegha Banerjee, Sreelekha Mitra, Kaushik Sen, and Shantilal Mukerjee in key roles.
Salt Lake resident Avishek Banerjee, who watched the film on the day of its release, said, “This was expected to happen. People praise content-driven films but never go to the theatres to watch it. They wait to see it on TV. It’s a sorry state of affairs for independent cinema.”
Sikha Dasgupta echoed Avishek and said, “Rainbow Jelly suffered the same fate as Bakita Byaktigato, Asha Jaoar Majhe, Sahaj Paather Gappo, and Phoring.” The retired Garia school teacher said, “All these were brilliantly made films but found no takers beyond the first week.”
“The film did not release in my hometown at all,” said Bardhaman resident Biswajit Sinha. “It’s not possible for me to travel all the way to Kolkata with my son to watch the film,” Biswajit rued, adding that he was keenly waiting to watch Rainbow Jelly all the while.
Some experts, however, have pointed out at the wrong time of releasing the film. “Rainbow Jelly was crammed between Haami and Uma, two major releases from heavyweight production houses. Small-budget films, even if they have great content, can’t stand in competition to the assertive distributor network that these houses have,” said veteran film researcher Swapan Chakraborty, adding that independent films should ideally release when there are no big-budget films in close contest.
Haami, directed by Nandita Roy and Shiboprosad Mukherjee is in the third week of its release, and is already being touted as the biggest hit so far this year. Uma, directed by Srijit Mukherji, opens across India today and have got multiple shows at every theatre from all leading multiplex chains.