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'Debi': A delightful preface to Misir Ali chronicles

  • Published at 10:56 pm October 21st, 2018
Debi Poster
I will suggest the readers to watch 'Debi' in theatres because only then the actual thrill can be fully derived

The introduction of one of the central characters Ranu was very mysterious since in first couple of scenes the audience could only see the character's body hiding behind restricted light and some whisper of her name which built the secrecy of the plot. After a while, actor Jaya emerged as Ranu with her goddess-like eyes, which resembled the Ranu that everyone loved in the book. I loved how Jaya gave her best, not only to make the film visually appealing but also to play Ranu’s character as authentically as possible.  If you are a fan of Jaya, you are bound to fall in love with her again as Ranu

I was in my college when fictional narratives captivated me more than the chemical reactions of my textbook. I was madly in love with Humayun Ahmed’s iconic creations and considered his every piece to be a life-saver during my troubled teenage period.

However, my friends used to mock me for my blind love for Humayun sir’s work but Misir Ali was always there like a shield against all such criticism. 

When I first learnt that “Debi” was taken up as a film project, my immediate reaction was very negative and I could not even think of anyone touching this invaluable piece of literature.

When I got a ticket to watch the film on the first day at Star Cineplex, I was wearing the critic’s hat from the very beginning. 

After watching the film, the first reaction that came to my mind was “Wow.” I fell in love with “Debi” the film.

The first scene of sacrificing a girl and the sudden death of that executioner in front of a Debi (Goddess) set the mood that the story will follow the moral of good virtues triumphing over evil power. 

The introduction of one of the central characters Ranu was very mysterious since in first couple of scenes the audience could only see the character's body hiding behind restricted light and some whisper of her name which built the secrecy of the plot. After a while, actor Jaya emerged as Ranu with her goddess-like eyes, which resembled the Ranu that everyone loved in the book. 

I loved how Jaya gave her best, not only to make the film visually appealing but also to play Ranu’s character as authentically as possible.  If you are a fan of Jaya, you are bound to fall in love with her again as Ranu. 

However, Misir Ali's arrival in the film was not so mysterious, in fact I think the maker Anam Biswas deliberately gave a comical flavour in his introductory scene only to put both the central characters juxtaposed. 

Chanchal as Misir Ali was persuasive enough, however, I somehow as an audience expected that I would be able to see more of Misir Ali and his world. The film was more about an extraordinary being Debi and less about Misir Ali himself. 

I loved everyone’s acting, especially that of Animesh Aich, since his gentlemanly portrayal felt so real that if I had to imagine anyone in the character Anis, there would be no replacement of his natural yet memorable performance. 

As an ardent follower of Misir Ali stories, I have two objections with “Debi” the film. At first, I thought Iresh Zaker was over dramatic that his portrayal of a cold blooded killer. The second not so impressive note would be the climax which failed to capture the mystical essence of “Debi” in the end.

Nevertheless, I loved the film since the maker and most of the actors did full justice to their respective characters. Kudos to producer and actor Jaya because she actually treated the film as her child and her hard work paid off because bringing Misir Ali to reel was not an easy task. 

I will suggest the readers to watch “Debi” in theatres because only then the actual thrill can be fully derived. Also, a Humayun Ahmed fan should not miss the chance to relive this Misir Ali story on the silver screen with chilly sounds and spooky lighting.


Nafisa Nazmul is a film enthusiast and an intern at the Dhaka Tribune’s Showtime Desk