• Island City

    65

    Generally favourable reviews (?)
    Based on 14 critics

    Cast & Crew

    Summary

    The film follows three comic-dramatic stories set in Mumbai. The first is about a diligent office worker who wins the office ‘Fun Committee Award’, which entitles him to a whole day full of fun. He is most reluctant to leave the safety of his cubicle but he has to. Prescribed fun modules have to be completed and non-compliance is not an option… The second story begins with a domineering head-of-the-family, Anil, who is on life support. Seeking some relief, his family decides to buy a TV, which Anil had banned. Now every night the family plugs into a popular soap whose hero, Purshottam, is a man ideal in every way and they are smitten. Then suddenly, comes the news that Anil is better and may be home soon. Will they have to let Purshottam go?… The third one centers on Aarti whose repetitive existence is slowly making her more and more mechanical and numb. Deep inside ferments a disconnect and unease that she is unable to articulate to anyone. Then one day there arrives a most intimate letter and everything changes…

    Trailer

Critic reviews and ratings

  • It is a very well-made, confident film that fearlessly eschews Bollywoodisms and just exists in its distinctive rhythm; never for a second, feeling the need to shock and impress the audience.

    89

    Critic rating (?)

  • Laced with sly wit and captivating storytelling feints, Island City touches heights that Hindi films do only once in a blue moon. It is absolutely unmissable.

    79

    Critic rating (?)

  • This is a stellar debut film, as much for the storytelling as the subtle handling and dark humour.

    79

    Critic rating (?)

  • ...this one deserves to be watched for its riveting take on love, longing and loneliness.

    69

    Critic rating (?)

  • As a tonally tricky, slyly subversive mood piece, it finds itself in a very small group of Hindi films. It’s also an intriguing new entry in the long tradition of films that explore the spiritual heartache of living in Mumbai.

    69

    Critic rating (?)

  • Writer-director Ruchika Oberoi's Fedora prize at last year's Venice Film Festival for Island City is well-deserved. Her approach to storytelling could be variously inspired by many, but she delivers on the style and format to make this a compelling watch.

    69

    Critic rating (?)

  • ...is well paced, nuanced and to the point. Watch it for the sake of good cinema.

    69

    Critic rating (?)

  • Ruchika Oberoi’s understated style, on-point writing and sense of humour are significant new additions to the Indian cinemascape. Island City is a sorrowful yet amusing, acutely observant film.

    69

    Critic rating (?)

  • ...is quite unlike any recent Hindi film. The complex narratives, laced with humour and satire, keep us enthralled while also presenting the deeper issues of life.

    69

    Critic rating (?)

  • You need to have an appetite for Isaac Asimov kind of sci-fi coupled with a taste for fine cinema. Else you’ll find yourself a little lost in the detailed and very dystopian world of this film.

    59

    Critic rating (?)

  • Do not miss this movie.

    59

    Critic rating (?)

  • ...works best through these fleeting, arresting visuals, their impact diluting when the director turns her attention towards building the narrative arcs.

    49

    Critic rating (?)

  • Oberoi quirkily tells these twisted tragicomic stories.

    49

    Critic rating (?)

  • Three stories, tenuously tied in a presentation that is so amateurish, you wonder why NFDC would back this film school type story-telling.

    29

    Critic rating (?)

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