BILLY BUDD (Peter Ustinov, 1962)

“We do not deal with justice here, but with the law.” “Was not the one conceived to serve the other?” Peter Ustinov’s film Billy Budd claims a Pirandellian moment. One knows from his tight smile covering manipulativeness, fearmongering and depths of paranoia whom Claggart is meant to resemble, as Robert Ryan vividly plays the master-at-arms […]

THE GOLDEN FORTRESS (Satyajit Ray, 1974)

“Some people are wearing masks,” Calcutta detective Feluda remarks at a mid-point in the case he is investigating—and he is right: an imposter is afoot. Ironically, Feluda himself is hiding behind a made-up identity: Prodosh Mitra.      Six-year-old Mukul Dhar worries his parents by drawing pictures of camels, a peacock and a golden fortress at two […]