Calcutta (1971) - Rotten Tomatoes

Calcutta (1971)





Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Movie Info

This documentary - edited from the rushes of the longer Phantom India - shows the various stations of life and death in Calcutta, India. From the wealthy aristocrats to the lepers and untouchables, the life stories are as varied as the city's 8 million plus people. The grimy waterfront port is overlooked by fabulous temples. Sacred cows travel freely and step over the lowest caste untouchables and the bodies of peasants who have starved to death. Religious ceremonies and everyday business transactions are also shown. A woman's body is ceremonially torched on a funeral alter placed atop kindling and logs for cremation. Modern mechanics collide with manual labor as unskilled laborers grow increasingly dependent on charity to survive. From disease-riddled slums, to homes of the fabulously wealthy, Calcutta is a city of color, contrast, and an ever-growing population that could easily double or triple in 10 years. ~ Dan Pavlides, Rovi


Critic Reviews for Calcutta

All Critics (1)

Offers a snapshot of life in such a teeming and complex city.

Full Review… | November 1, 2004
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Audience Reviews for Calcutta

Malle's documentary focuses on appalling living conditions and social unrest in Calcutta. Having seen umpteen Ray and Ghatak movies, little of this was new to me, but it was still interesting (and quite depressing). But the French are sometimes insufferably eager to point fingers. I'm not one of these "freedom fries" Americans that hates the French. But really, don't they have enough colonial problems in their own past that they don't have to go "tsk tsk"-ing the English over India?

Martin Teller
Martin Teller

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