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A woman stands in the kitchen packing a lunchbox
The Lunchbox

Film

The Lunchbox

PG

Seniors’ Cinema

4 Jul - 14 Jul

Stage actress and up-and-coming film star Nimrat Kaur and Indian star Irrfan Khan (The Life of Pi, Slumdog Millionaire) deliver subtle, understated performances of great charm in writer/director Ritesh Batra’s appealing feature film debut. Freely adapted from Ernst Lubitsch’s 1940 romantic comedy The Shop Around the Corner, the lead characters in Batra’s gentle, bittersweet adaptation initially appear even more adrift and lovelorn in the teeming metropolis of Mumbai that serves as backdrop to their story.

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  • A young housewife, Ila (Kaur) attempts to pique her husband’s interest by preparing lovingly made home-cooked lunches. When a rare mistake is made by one of Mumbai’s dabbawalas, who deliver hot lunches across the bustling city in record time, the tiffin tin meant for her husband is instead delivered to a despondent accountant counting down his days to retirement.

    Mr Fernandes (Khan), a widower whose deep sense of loss has atrophied into stubborn isolation, resolutely keeps his co-workers, and just about everyone else, at a distance. Assuming the commercial catering service that delivers his meal has modified his order, he includes a note with the empty tiffin tin. 

    Once he and Ila get to the bottom of the mistaken delivery, however, the two continue a tentative, increasingly confessional exchange of notes, filled with observations and, eventually, revelations about their respective lives. 

    “A culinary and epistolary friendship with a perfect balance of tact and sentimentality. A deft and charming first feature.” The New York Times 

    “A gentle tale full of…charm” The Sunday Age