The Bakshiphiles

India’s most popular detective now dominates the screen

01 October 2013

A SLACK-JAWED WRITER, visibly taken in by the opulence around him, grinned through his beard at a dashing king. It was a still, muggy afternoon, and the three men—the writer was accompanied by a bespectacled man in white who chose to stay mostly silent—were sitting on wood-carved chairs in a regal, yet aging, palace. Having heard of local big game, the gents were waiting to hear a tiger’s bellow.

With an immaculately creased dhuti and a dressy stole draped over one shoulder, the young royal lifted the corners of his mouth in a weary but warm smile. “Call me Himangshu,” he pleaded with his visitors, insisting on informality.

“I’ll maim you with my shoe!”

Raja Sen  has been the film critic at since 2004, and continues to write about movies, motorsport and music for publications including GQ, Rolling Stone, The Indian Quarterly, Mumbai Mirror, Man’s World and Tehelka. He lives in Mumbai, and is working on his first book.

Keywords: cinema Bengali Satyajit Ray filmmaking popular culture Dibakar Banerjee Rituparno Ghosh detective fiction