Learning to Drive (2014)

Romantic comedies, as a rule, tend to get a bad rap. About half the time it’s deserved, as cliché follows cliché while subpar acting combines with flimsy plot development. (Doesn’t mean I don’t love them.) Learning to Drive, however, strays as far from this stereotype as possible while still falling under the rom-com umbrella. In the…

Crow's Egg (2014)

BAPFF: Crow’s Egg (2014)

Programming the opening night of a film festival must make for a tricky task. Whatever the remit of the festival proper, programmers tend to feel compelled to put a warm-hearted crowd-pleaser in front of the audience on the first night, which tends to attract a positive-but-underwhelmed critical reaction more often than not (with some exceptions:…

Siddharth (2013)

Siddharth (2013)

Canadian director and co-writer of Siddharth, Richie Mehta, was inspired by his own encounter with a man on the streets of India looking for his lost son. His film poses the same questions Mehta must have had after this encounter. “What happened to the boy?” And, perhaps as importantly, “How could a father know so…

Irrfan Khan in The Lunchbox (2013)

The Lunchbox (2013)

The Lunchbox marketing promises a kind of Indian take on Sleepless in Seattle, where two strangers – through the vagaries of chance and India’s carefully-orchestrated, but not flawless, lunchbox distribution system – begin a correspondence and fall in love before they ever meet. You know, the kind of frothy, featherweight romantic comedy that makes the…