Docs might not be making much cash at the box-office, but there’s certainly no shortage of them playing in NYC theaters these days. While I can’t say all of them are deserving of a theatrical release, I’m very happy that Sandhya Suri’s “I for India” has found a distribution home with First Run/Icarus Films and a little screen time in some big cities. Arguably the best film in 2006’s Sundance World Cinema Doc program, the story begins in the 1960s, following the filmmaker’s father, Yash Pal Suri, as he moves his family from India to England to seek out a better life and career. Much of the film consists of home movie footage, derived from the super 8 film and reel-to-reel sound recorders he used to communicate with his beloved parents and family back home.
As I wrote from Park City, “”I for India” soon turns emotionally gripping, as the movies that are sent back and forth between the families reveal deep scars of abandonment and the profound pains of assimilation and discrimination. Smartly crafted and affecting, the film builds to a final passage that is as beautifully apt as it is telling about the inevitable fracture of families.”