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Five films in which Raima Sen stood out in an ensemble cast

How Raima Sen wowed us in Anuranan, Noukadubi, Honeymoon Travels Pvt Ltd, Mirch, Maach Mishti & More

Agnivo Niyogi Calcutta Published 07.11.22, 09:47 AM
A still of Raima Sen from Noukadubi.

A still of Raima Sen from Noukadubi. TT Archives

Raima Sen, Suchitra Sen’s granddaughter.

Raima Sen, Moon Moon Sen’s daughter.


Raima Sen, actress.

She came in with quite a filmi legacy, but soon came into her own as an actress.

Ashalata in Rituparno Ghosh’s Chokher Bali (2003) was her breakout performance, followed by several other roles big and small.

On her birthday, we revisit five films in which Raima Sen was part of an ensemble cast, but stood out in the crowd.

Anuranan (2006)

Aniruddha Roy Chowdhury’s directorial debut deals with the relationship dynamics between two couples. Rahul (Rahul Bose) and his wife Nandita (Rituparna Sengupta) return to Kolkata from the UK, where their new-found friends are Amit (Rajat Kapoor) and his wife Preeti (Raima Sen). A friendship blossoms between Rahul and Preeti, ending in a shocking tragedy.

Raima stands her ground in this ensemble cast of senior actors as she essays the role of a sensitive young woman trapped in a loveless marriage. Preeti’s look — saris and glasses — spoke volumes, as did her silences.

Anuranan released at the same time as Anjan Dutt’s blockbuster The Bong Connection, where Raima plays a bubbly youngster — Sheela — and many of us voted for her as Preeti over Sheela!

Honeymoon Travels Pvt Ltd (2007)

Director Reema Kagti’s debut film is an innovative travel-com with a huge ensemble cast. Six newly-married couples discover secrets about their respective spouses during their honeymoon in Goa. Kay Kay Menon and Raima Sen, who play a Bengali couple, are the most likeable of the lot. Their relationship arc comes full circle as they deal with insecurities and other personal issues. Raima’s Milli Sen is a refreshingly believable act amidst a cacophony of caricatures. From parasailing in a sari to black belt moves, Raima aces it as a docile Bengali bride with spunk.

Mirch (2010)

Vinay Shukla’s Mirch is a sex comedy that does not attempt to titilate but attempts to make a statement on gender equality. Shukla tells four different stories spotlighting “women who love to play and… get away!”In the first story, Raima Sen plays a woman who cheats on her husband (Rajpal Yadav) and smartly gets away with it. Raima is playful and provocative, just what the role of Maya demands. The scene in which her husband is hiding under the bed to catch her red-handed and she spins a yarn to her lover (Arunoday Singh) is a riot. A rare woman-on-top moment in Hindi cinema.

Speaking to The Telegraph about Mirch, Raima had said: “My parents loved the film. My mother (Moon Moon Sen) thought I have really matured as an actress.... And guess what? Yash Chopra called and complimented me!”

Noukadubi (2011)

In Noukadubi, director Rituparno Ghosh uses the crux of the original novel by Rabindranath Tagore — a case of mistaken identity — to weave a tale of his own. A newly-wed couple meet with an accident and end up as the sole survivors. A few months later, the man realises to his horror that the veiled woman he brought home is the wife of another man.

The ensemble cast of the film includes Jisshu Sengupta, Raima Sen and Riya Sen, with a special appearance by Prosenjit Chatterjee. Raima breathes life into Hemnalini’s character with grace and poignancy.

This was the first time that sisters Raima and Riya shared screen space. Chatting about the casting coup with The Telegraph after the release of the film, Rituparno Ghosh had said with a laugh: “Raima and Riya told me that no one but a mad man would cast them together! And it was indeed a madhouse on the sets…. It was a delight to work with Riya. Raima, of course, is my bad habit!”

Maach Mishti & More (2013)

Mainak Bhaumik’s family drama succinctly depicts ‘mind the gap’ among the members of a family who are living together but are very different from each other. Raima delivers a heartwarming performance as Ishaani, a yoga instructor and reiki practitioner. Her bohemian look and bindaas attitude reminded us of… well, Raima!

“Raima is playing a character very much like what she is in real life… fun-loving and carefree,” Mainak had told The Telegraph.

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