I Is For India review

Newcomer Sandhya Suri impresses with this moving docu-chronicle of the immigrant experience in post-war Britain. She draws extensively on the Super 8 home movies and audio letters made by her father Yash Pal Suri, a doctor who left India for England with his wife in 1965. Suri senior used to regularly mail the subcontinent his filmed observations of life in this strange new country; in return his relatives would send him footage of family shindigs. Shrewdly chosen clips from news programmes (eg Maggie Thatcher’s infamous “swamped by people with a different culture” snark) remind us of the institutional racism experienced by families like the Suris. And when second daughter Vanita chooses to emigrate Down Under, the painful cycle of parents living thousands of miles from their offspring starts over. Perceptive and powerful.

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