POLITE SOCIETY – A Review by Jenn Rohm

POLITE SOCIETY – A Review by Jenn Rohm

Having directed two episodes of Dr. Who and winning a BAFTA for We Are Lady Parts expectations were set for what Nida Manzoor created with Polite Society.  Ria Khan (Priya Kansara) is determined to be a professional stuntwoman, no matter what others say.  She is also the biggest fan and supporter of her older sister Lena (Ritu Arya).  Lena, having faced a setback, is a bit lost, and trying to find her path.  She allows parental pressure to guide her into a semi-arranged marriage.  Ria is bound and determined that this is the wrong path for Lena and will stop at nothing to prevent the wedding.

Manzoor brought additional layers that add to the story with inspiration from her life and the films she grew up with.  A mixing of British and South Asian cultures is represented in large and small ways from the costuming to the city shots, a Bollywood Dance number, and even the food being eaten.  We are given insight into a family that honors the tradition of those before them, while they are also willing to change to honor their independent daughters. 

Having chosen to use fighting styles found in the films of Jackie Chan there is a bit of humor in the fight scenes. The choreography of the fights fits in with the skill set of the characters and an occasional touch of movie magic.  The editing of these scenes reminded me of films from the 90s and films not produced in the US.  The fights were ‘announced’ with a video game voice and fighter versus fighter title cards on the screen giving a nod to Scott Pilgrim vs. the World.

This is Nida Manzoor’s debut feature film.  Yes, there are a few hiccups if you are comparing it to the big box office action/superhero films coming out.  Go to the film, sit down with your friends and have some popcorn and a drink.  Be ready to enjoy this film for what it is.  Then join me in waiting for her next project.

 

Director: Nida Manzoor

Written By: Nida Manzoor

Cast: Priya Kansara, Ritu Arya, Renu Brindle

MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for strong language, violence, sexual material, and some partial nudity

Genres: Action, Comedy

Selig Rating: 4.5 stars

Runtime: 1h 43 m

Release Date: April 28, 2023

Movie Site: Polite Society Official Website

Trailer: Polite Society Official Trailer

 

The Selig Rating Scale:

5 Stars – Excellent movie/show, well worth the time and price.

4 Stars – Good movie/show

3 Stars – OK movie/show

2 Stars – Well there was nothing else …

1 Star – Total waste of time.

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