Water (2005)



Critic Consensus: This compassionate work of social criticism is also luminous, due to both its lyrical imagery and cast.

Movie Info

The film examines the plight of a group of widows forced into poverty at a temple in the holy city of Varanasi. It focuses on a relationship between one of the widows, who wants to escape the social restrictions imposed on widows, and a man who is from the highest caste and a follower of Mahatma Gandhi.

Rating: PG-13 (for mature thematic material involving sexual situations and for brief drug use)
Genre: Drama, Romance
Directed By:
Written By: Deepa Mehta
In Theaters:
On DVD: Aug 29, 2006
Box Office: $3.1M
Fox Searchlight Pictures - Official Site

News & Interviews for Water

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Critic Reviews for Water

All Critics (101) | Top Critics (38)

Quite possibly the best picture of the year thus far, with no fewer than three of the most luminous female performances I have ever seen onscreen.

Full Review… | July 19, 2006
New York Observer
Top Critic

Mehta prevailed, and this scandalous, beautiful and very moving tale of repression, hope and a tragedy is her triumph, and Hindu India's shame.

Full Review… | July 7, 2006
Orlando Sentinel
Top Critic

Mehta explores the politics of religion to highlight how religious hypocrisy is used to ensure women are undermined and made subservient for economic purposes.

Full Review… | February 11, 2013
Cinema Autopsy

Powerful tale that unfortunately fails to provide any kind of real historical context for the oppression of Indian widows.

Full Review… | April 3, 2007

Perhaps the adversity of making the movie allowed the filmmakers and actors to empathize more fully with the subject and characters of Water.

Full Review… | February 22, 2007
Film Journal International

... the incidence of violence against women at home or in institutions give Mehta's 1938 tale a currency that confirms the old notion "actions change, but attitudes do not."

Full Review… | February 10, 2007

Audience Reviews for Water


There's few movies that can ride on purely beautiful cinematography in order to tell a story, but this certainly does. The message of this movie is so well told through its images that it quite possibly could have been utterly silent and still effective. Now the basic story and characters are okay, but they wouldn't be half as effective if they weren't given such a great backdrop. The issue is important, but not something an American audience would necessarily need a feature length to understand. For a two hour movie that essentially deals with one sole issue, it can be a bit lengthy and unevenly paced, but I would never go as far as to say that it was bad or boring. It also has quite possibly one of the most oddly humorous moments ever brought onscreen concerning a fart joke and a child stomping on a fat woman's back.

Conner Rainwater

Super Reviewer

Ooooooooh. This is a most WONDERFUL movie! The setting is beautiful. The story is amazing and very moving. The acting superb. This is my idea of a PERFECT film. This movie was nominated for a 2007 Academy Award. I dont understand why this movie wouldnt have won hands down. Truly, truly wonderful.

Cynthia S.

Super Reviewer


Heart braking and fascinating look at the terrible life of widows in India.

Jeremy Smith

Super Reviewer

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