Once Upon a Time In Calcutta
When Ela’s daughter dies, she no longer sees any reason to stay with her husband. She decides to move out, but she keeps running into trouble: The bank won’t give her a loan, her step-brother refuses to sell a derelict theatre that they own together, and she receives an indecent proposal from the boss of a Ponzi scheme. It’s not easy living in Calcutta.
Director Aditya Vikram Sengupta has made a movie that speaks about his feelings and thoughts about his home city, Calcutta – or Kolkata, as it is named now – a city in tremendous growth, whose citizens are struggling to keep up. Sengupta wanted to make a movie about people gasping for breath in a city that won’t stop growing.
This is a meditative film with complicated fates, but it is also full of hope and dreams; visually is is characterised by beautiful tableaus and moody and expressionistic lighting. You are easily pulled into the plight of the characters and you want them to succeed, but the city itself seems stacked against them.
Once Upon a Time in Calcutta premiered at Venice Film Festival, where it was a nominee for the Best Film award.
Aditya Vikram Sengupta (b.1983) was born in Calcutta and became interested in performativ arts at an early age. He was also and dramatist before he taught himself animation and film. His debut feature, Labour of Love, generated a huge buzz on the festival circuit. After it premiered in the Venice International Film Festival it was screened at over 70 festivals and won 13 international awards.
This film is part of
Country India, France, Norway
Director Aditya Vikram Sengupta
Screenplay Aditya Vikram Sengupta
Cinematography Gökhan Tiryaki
Producer Priyanka Agarwal, Anshulika Dubey, Catherine Dussart, Ingrid Lill Høgtun, Marie Fuglestein Lægreid, Linda Bolstad Strønen
Cast Sreelekha Mitra, Satrajit Sarkar, Bratya Basu
Production Company Catherine Dussart Productions (CDP), DUOfilm, For Films
Distribution Duo Film
Runtime 2h 11m
Genre Drama, Suspense
Age limit 15
This film is in competition for the Audience Award.