Directed by: Hansal Mehta
Starring: Rajkummar Rao, Patraleka, Manav Kaul, Mallhar Goenka, Khushboo Upadhyay, Vinod Rawat
Music by: Jeet Ganguli
Running time: 126 minutes
BollySitter Recommended Age: 17+
BollySitter Family GO Factor: 1.5/5.0
Citylights is a mature and absorbing drama that is staged and performed well. It is an officially credited remake of “Metro Manila (2013)” by Sean Elis but adapted very well to the Indian Milieu. The film provides unrelenting drama with ample thrills that would be lapped up by those who like serious & realistic cinema. The only child character in the film is an important part of the story, however, she gets almost no screen time or speaking part.
The film shows a frequent use of firearms and violence scenes of varying degrees. There are a couple of scenes of physical fights shown in a very realistic way (hence more affecting). There is also a scene of a person getting held on a gunpoint following by several shots getting fired. A couple of deaths from gunshot wounds with visible blood are also shown in the film. There is also a scene of manhandling and dragging a person forcibly.
Lovemaking is shown between the main characters in two different scenes. In addition, there are a couple of scenes showing kissing on the lips. These are not shown to titillate the audience but rather a simple & realistic portrayal.
There are a few scenes set in the seedy dance bar in which women are objectified, treated badly and made to dance suggestively in skimpy outfits. No nudity is shown, however, a character is asked to strip in the dance bar.
A couple of places the curse words are used but they are silenced out.
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
There is a big drunk scene followed by verbal and physical altercation between the lead couple. The dance bar has ample drinking and smoking on display during the 2-3 scenes set there.
The theme of gaining wealth by any means possible lurks throughout the film with some characters going for stealing large sums of money. The female characters are shown to have taken demeaning jobs in shady dance bars to earn their living.
Bechdel test 3/3
The main female character and a support female character do speak to each other about topics besides a man so the film does pass the bechdel test with flying colors on paper. However, there are aspects of the film which are sexist and demeaning towards women and the screen time devoted to the two women having a conversation isn’t very much.
Overall, the film targets adult audience but film would be OK to watch for 17+ year-olds.
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