Zero Bridge (2011)



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In the tradition of hard-hitting neo-realist filmmaking comes ZERO BRIDGE, the debut feature of Tariq Tapa, a US-born filmmaker of Kashmiri/Jewish-American descent. Having spent his childhood summers in India-controlled Kashmir with his father's family, he was committed to making a film of quotidian life, far from Bollywood fantasies and Western news reports of terrorism: Dilawar is a teenage pickpocket whose escape plans are complicated when he develops an uneasy alliance with a woman (herself fleeing an arranged marriage) whose passport he has stolen. ZERO BRIDGE is a story of two young people's struggle to retain their humanity, despite poverty, the traditional culture into which they've been born, and the fatalism, sexism and casual cruelty of their families. -- (C) Film Forum

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Critic Reviews for Zero Bridge

All Critics (13) | Top Critics (4)

[Director Tariq Tapa's] neorealist approach, not supported by much technique, gets dreary, but he has an ace up his sleeve.

Feb 18, 2011 | Rating: 2.5/5 | Full Review…

The wisp of a story that drives the film follows the neo-realist template a little too closely.

Feb 17, 2011 | Rating: C+
AV Club
Top Critic

Rough hewn neo-realist drama from India has its sociological fascinations.

Feb 16, 2011 | Full Review…

Made for a song with a non-pro cast and DV camera gear out of his backpack, Tariq Tapa's debut feature shows the young Kashmiri-American as a filmmaker of enormous promise and precocious maturity.

Feb 15, 2011 | Full Review…

While the film's minimalist nature is its greatest asset in the first act, it ultimately makes its flaws and screenwriterly touches all the more apparent, resulting in some great individual slice-of-life sequences and some truly hackneyed ones.

Oct 11, 2015 | Rating: 1.5/5 | Full Review…

Almost effortlessly, the plot of Zero Bridge grabs you.

Feb 20, 2011 | Rating: 4/5

Audience Reviews for Zero Bridge

"Zero Bridge" starts with Dilawar(Mohamad Emran Tapa) meeting an acquaintance at a bridge, after which they do a little light purse snatching. They have a disagreement about the split which draws the attention of a soldier, landing them both in jail. Dilawar's devout uncle Ali(Ali Muhammed Dar) bails him out. In the meantime, Bani(Taniya Khan) is looking to replace her stolen passport. While lacking sorely in technique, "Zero Bridge" is still an engaging look at a teenager who is at a stage in his life when he is making tons of mistakes, not thinking that his actions might have consequences. However, this does not excuse his uncle, whose whole life is built on hard work and has asked for nothing, handing down punishments that are on the verge of abusive. All of this happens in Kashmir which is marred by violence, corrobated by news reports and the ubiquitous soldiers who keep people from loitering at a bridge, by force, if necessary. In the end, area youth are left with few options if they want to stay.

Walter M.
Walter M.

Super Reviewer

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