Although I’m not through Ray’s complete filmography as director quite yet (21 down, 15 to go, including all of the documentaries), I’ve identified a few visual and plot elements he seems to be fond of. This is not a complaint—he uses them for good reason—but they are increasingly familiar, and as such they merit their own special recognition in this time-honored tradition.
- People looking through windows partially obscured by slats, shutters, curtains, or bars: Abhijan, Monihara, Devi, Mahanagar, Charulata, Aranyer Din Ratri, Two.
Subset: people looking through binoculars: Charulata, Kanchenjungha, Joi Baba Felunath.
- Socially awkward picnics: Aranyer Din Ratri, Kapurush, Shakha Proshakha, Charulata.
- Paisley bathrobes, particularly if the wearer is sulking, brooding, or making a pronouncement: Charulata, Nayak.
- Women quietly knitting: Kapurush, Shakha Proshakha, Kanchnjungha.
- Drawings accompanying opening titles: Goopy Gyne Bagha Byne, Kanchenjungha, Sonar Kella.
- Paper cut-outs: Goopy Gyne Bagha Byne, Chiriyakhana.
- A friend adds that his wife says that if you drink every time Topshe is making a facial expression other than a “Colgate smile,” you’ll be in fine condition to drive, even after both of the Ray-directed Feludas.
Add to the list in the comments! We’ll be inebRAYated in no time.