A frayed rug round his shoulders, My father came down the Sahyadris And stood at your doorstep, With only his labour in his hands. -From “Mumbai” by Narayan Surve
The multilingual Bombay, the Bombay of intolerance, the Bombay of closed mills, of popular culture, sprawling slums and real estate onslaughts, the metropolis of numerous ghettos, the El Dorado. This film is a tale of the cities of Bom Bahia / Bombay / Mumbai, through a tapestry of fiction, cinema vérité, art objects, found footage, sound installation and literary texts. It is a chronicle of the journey of an insignificant settlement to the coveted stature of a metropolis.
The narrative is structured around imaginary debates between Ismat Chugtai and Sadat Hasan Manto, the two legendary writers who lived in this metropolis, over the art of chronicling these multi-layered overlapping cities.
Shot mainly during the monsoon the film portrays some extremely beautiful yet ruthlessly violent features of Bombay.