Cactus is a silent feature-length film by Aneek Chaudhuri whose last two feature films, namely ‘The Wife’s Letter’ and ‘White was celebrated worldwide at International Film Festivals.
White was Aneek’s first silent film that too on a social issue like rape and now he is into Cactus, which is a film based on Jesus Christ, Mother Mary and the artform of Pieta. It features Aparajita Dey as Jesus Christ, Anurupa Chakraborty and Aishani De as two avatars of Mother Mary.
On asking Aneek, the director about Aparajita being cast as Jesus, he says, “It’s not that she will be added moustache or the draperies of Christ era, to make her appear to be Jesus. We are working on the symbolic verse of Jesus Christ. And frankly speaking, I am not too much impressed by any other female face other than her when it comes to spotting masculinity and female grace in a combined form. I personally admire her screen presence and her way of dealing with the characters on stage.”
The film had faced the wrath of commercialisation of media and hence, fell prey to the existing structure of film production. As per Aneek, “Cactus too had to face financial constraints and still is going through it; that is quite usual for an independent production in Bengal. That does not discourage our time for completing it and now is in its stage of post-production. In Bengal, there are producers who are big-mouthed and speak a lot rather than doing things; the condition is worse. However, our passion has to survive.”
Aneek adds, “I have been trying to put forth my opinions on Pieta, which I believe is a matured piece of sculpture by Michelangelo and is marked to be a comeback piece for him. Pieta is one of those rare pieces that bridge the difference between life and death and brings it to an equal platform. Therefore, I had always this thought of making it in a continuous take that shows the circle of life and death in one vision. Cactus is an attempt to do the same.”