Cleveland International Film Festival } March 22 – April 1, 2023 } Playhouse Square

LALON

Year: 2004
Country: BANGLADESH
Language: Bengali
Run Time: 127 minutes

Though soaked in song, this is no high-stepping musical. It?s a bio-pic of sorts, recreating the life of the legendary man called simply Lalon. It?s the late-1800s in Bengal and the Hindus and Muslims are firmly established. Yet the caste system leaves the rural people in poverty. Lalon (? ? 1890) became one of the Bauls of Bengal, who practice a form of spiritualism that mixes the mystical forms of Buddhism, Hinduism and Islam. They are peaceful humanists who believe in gender equality (radical back then), abstinence, and asceticism, and pray primarily through song. Their simple message brought hope to the rural communities in the south, and upset the religious establishments. In his lifetime, Lalon composed 1,000 songs, many of which are sung by real Baul-fakirs in this film. The Baul minstrel life of singing and transience is well portrayed in the film. Raisul Islam Asad plays the tortured and talented Lalon who leads his followers to independence.

Screenplay
Tanvir Mokammel

Director
Tanvir Mokammel

Producer
Kino-Eye Films

Cinematography
Anwar Hossain

Editing
Mahadeb Shi

Principal Cast
Raisul Islam Asad, Somi Kaiser, Azad Abul Kalam, Tamanna Yasmin Tithi

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