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India, United Kingdom, United States · 2015
1h 56m
Director Leena Yadav
Starring Radhika Apte, Tannishtha Chatterjee, Sayani Gupta, Surveen Chawla
Genre Bollywood, Drama

Rani is a widow, caring for a wayward teenage son, Gulab, and mother-in-law. Childless Lajjo, Rani’s friend, is married to an abusive alcoholic. Pressured by the village, Rani marries Gulab to Janki, an underaged girl. With their dancer friend Bijli, Rani and Lajjo form a close bond with Janki in defiance of their oppressive environment.

Stream Parched

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What are critics saying?


The Playlist by

It is easy to feel the passion with which Yadav tells the story, and to feel intimately connected with her characters, even in the midst of heavy-handed and almost bloated commentary, which sometimes feels a bit too blatantly thrown in.


The New York Times by Glenn Kenny

Despite the appalling circumstances and events it depicts, the movie’s plain and unstinting affection for its lead characters gives Parched a frequently buoyant tone.


The Hollywood Reporter by Justin Lowe

Yadav’s concerns about discrimination and violence against women are evident in nearly every scene of the film, as her script positions each of the principal characters to undergo an experience of self-actualization in defiance of prevailing patriarchal norms.


Los Angeles Times by Katie Walsh

Leena Yadav’s Parched is a bright jewel of a film, surprisingly funny, fresh and upbeat in the way it takes on the complicated and often dark topic of sexual politics in rural India. T


Variety by Nick Schager

Yadav pinpoints the various ways in which institutional and personal prejudices keep people enslaved, crafting a sharp portrait of gender inequality.


Village Voice by Simon Abrams

Too bad writer-director Leena Yadav only infrequently uses innuendo-driven sex talk to break up a monotonous series of confrontations between misogynistic alpha males and their unhappy wives.

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