New Delhi, July 27, 2023.
Time magazine has unveiled a list of the best movies of the past 10 decades, as per critic Stephanie Zacharek. The list traces the evolution of cinema from the 1920s to the 2010s, beginning with The Cabinet of Dr Caligari (1920) and culminating with Once Upon a Time in Hollywood (2019). In between these two films, there was room for only one Indian title, director Satyajit Ray’s Pather Panchali (1955).
An adaptation of Bibhutibhushan Bandyopadhyay’s 1929 Bengali novel of the same name, the film marked Ray’s directorial debut. It has since found mention in several similar lists of the best movies of all time. It functions as the first part of Ray’s Apu trilogy, which also includes Aparajito and Apur Sansar.
Pather Panchali was one of the first Indian films to receive international attention, and played a foundational role in the cultural movement that came to be known as parallel cinema. It was named the Best Feature Film at the 3rd National Film Awards. It competed for the Palme d’Or at Cannes, and Time magazine itself included it on a list of the 100 best movies of all time in 2005. Most recently, it was the only Indian film to find a place on Sight & Sound magazine’s revered list of the best films of all time, and was declared best Indian film ever by International Federation of Film Critics (FIPRESCI).