This beguiling and topical animated feature written, designed, and directed by Gitanjali Rao follows multiple characters, each connected by a single red rose, as they navigate life and love in the sprawling Indian metropolis.
Written, designed, and directed by Gitanjali Rao, this animated jewel overflows with a seductive mélange of sound, colour, and sensuality. Part network narrative, part city symphony, part meditation on longing, Bombay Rose will entrance you.
Inspired by true events, Rao's debut feature weaves together the experiences of several denizens of India's largest city: A sweetly singing flower seller constructs garlands while dreaming of a fairy tale romance. A little girl befriends an orphaned deaf boy who has lost his job. Police conduct raids on businesses they suspect of hiring children. An English teacher prepares food and sets a place at the table for her long-dead husband. A troupe of dance-bar workers consider unionizing. A young Muslim man from Kashmir explores the metropolis he believes holds the key to his destiny — and finds himself falling for a Hindu woman, believing that true love trumps the confines of faith. These and other stories are connected by a single red rose.
Bombay Rose's gorgeously hand-painted images, drawing upon folk art and Bollywood melodrama, allow urban landscapes to suddenly bloom before our eyes. Though it delves thoughtfully into weighty themes of poverty, corruption, and migration, the film's look and soundscapes beguile us with their unique rhythms and an enchanting capacity to blur time and place, reality and fantasy, human and animal.