27 Down

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27 Down
27 Down Poster.jpg
Original Movie Poster.
Directed by Awtar Krishna Kaul
Produced by Awtar Krishna Kaul
Screenplay by Awtar Krishna Kaul
Based on Athara Sooraj Ke Paudhe 
by Ramesh Bakshi
Starring Raakhee
M.K. Raina
Music by Hariprasad Chaurasia
Bhubaneshwar Mishra
Cinematography Apurba Kishore Bir
Edited by Ravi Patnaik
Release dates
  • 1974 (1974)
Running time 118 minutes
Country India
Language Hindi

27 Down is a 1974 Indian drama film directed by Awtar Krishna Kaul, starring Raakhee and M.K. Raina. The film is based on a Hindi novel Athara Sooraj Ke Paudhe by Ramesh Bakshi about a railways employee who meets a girl on the train. Film's music was classical musicians, Hariprasad Chaurasia and Bhubaneshwar Mishra,[1] while the production design was by Bansi Chandragupta.

At the 21st National Film Awards, the film won the Award for Best Feature Film in Hindi as well as Best Cinematography for Apurba Kishore Bir.[2][3] Film's director Avatar Kaul, died in an accident the same week the awards were announced. It was his only film.[4][5]


The film is set on 27 Down, the Bombay-Varanasi Express, Sanjay (M.K. Raina) is on a pilgrimage journey to Varanasi (Banaras), and remembers his life in flashbacks.[6] Sanjay gives up his dreams to become an artist, in order to support his family he takes up his father's profession of railways employee. He spends his days as railways ticket checker, till he meets a Life Insurance Corporation employee, Shalini (Raakhee), on the suburban train. After a few more meetings, they falls in love, and Sanjay starts seeing life differently, but when his father finds about their relationship, he fixes his marriage with some other girl.[4][5][6]



The film was shot on location on Mumbai trains, platforms, and at Mumbai's Victoria Terminus station, the cinematographer of the film, Apurba Kishore Bir was 22-year old, when he got the project, he shot 70 percent of the film using a hand-held camera, inspired by The Battle of Algiers, a 1966 war film with an aim to put the camera right in the conflict, he shot with wide lenses rather than zooms. Bir chose to shoot the film in black and white, as he wanted stark contrasts.[4] As it was difficult to control across crowd, most of the film's platform scenes were shot in the night, or at side platforms, and extras made it look like a busy time.[5]


  1. ^ "Pandit Bhubaneshwar Mishra". Retrieved 2013-09-19. 
  2. ^ "21st National Film Awards". International Film Festival of India. 
  3. ^ "21st National Film Awards (PDF)". Directorate of Film Festivals. 
  4. ^ a b c "Apurba Kishore Bir on 27 Down". Time Out Mumbai. December 11, 2009. Retrieved May 19, 2013. 
  5. ^ a b c Shubhra Gupta (Jul 7, 2012). "Silences of the heart". Indian Express. Retrieved May 19, 2013. 
  6. ^ a b "27 Down Bombay-Varanasi Express (1974)". The New York Times. 

External links[edit]