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City of Joy

Where to Watch City of Joy

PG-13
1992

The movie City of Joy takes place in the slums of Calcutta, India, and focuses on the relationship between a recently widowed American doctor, Max Lowe (played by Patrick Swayze), and a local rickshaw driver, Hasari Pal (played by Indian actor Om Puri). Max has come to Calcutta to escape his past and to try and find purpose in his life. He is initially reluctant to become involved with the impoverished community around him, but eventually, his experiences there begin to make him reevaluate his priorities.

As Max begins to explore the city, he meets Joan Bethel (played by British actress Pauline Collins), a British woman who runs a clinic in the slums. Joan welcomes Max to the clinic and introduces him to Sister Joanne (played by Indian actress Shabana Azmi), a Catholic nun who is deeply committed to helping the people of the slums. Max is struck by Sister Joanne's selflessness and dedication, and he begins to volunteer at the clinic as a doctor.

Through his work at the clinic, Max becomes close with Hasari and his family. Hasari is struggling to make ends meet and provide for his wife and children, but he is fiercely proud and determined to survive. Max is moved by Hasari's resilience and begins to see that he can make a difference in the lives of the people around him.

Despite the poverty and hardship that surrounds him, Max begins to find moments of joy and beauty in the city. He is struck by the vibrant colors of the marketplace, the music that fills the streets, and the warmth of the people he meets. Max starts to open himself up to the possibility of hope and connection.

However, not everything in Calcutta is rosy. Max and Joan become aware of the corrupt police force and their connections to the criminal underworld. They witness the appalling treatment of women in the city and the injustice that often goes unpunished. Max becomes deeply conflicted about the extent to which he can make a difference in the face of such immense challenges.

The movie City of Joy is a powerful exploration of poverty, community, and hope. It portrays the city of Calcutta with both sensitivity and grittiness, showing both the beauty of its culture and the struggles of its people. The performances by Swayze, Puri, Collins, and Azmi are all nuanced and affecting, bringing depth to the characters and their relationships. Director Roland Joffe captures the vibrancy of the city and its people, while also delving into the political and social realities that shape their lives.

City of Joy is not a light-hearted movie; it tackles some difficult subjects and portrays some harrowing events. However, it also offers a message of resilience and hope, showing how kindness and human connection can overcome even the most dire circumstances. The movie reminds us that everyone has the ability to make a difference, no matter how insignificant they may feel. It is a testament to the power of human compassion, and a powerful statement on the importance of social justice.

City of Joy is a Drama movie released in 1992. It has a runtime of 132 minutes. Critics and viewers have rated it moderate reviews, with an IMDb score of 6.5..

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6.5/10
Director
Roland Joff
Stars
Patrick Swayze, Om Puri, Shabana Azmi, Art Malik
Genres
Also starring Pauline Collins
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