Film Review: Ajji (2017) by Devashish Makhija

Probably one of the best independent Indian films of the year, Devashish Makhija’s “Ajji” takes a dark (noir) approach to the “Red Riding Hood” fairytale, by placing it in the Indian slums and inducing it with violence to the point of gore, and a number of pointy social remarks.

When little Manda fails to show up after being sent for a small chore in the night, her grandmother and a local prostitute begin to search for her, only to find her raped and dumped in a trash heap in her slum. As soon as they arrive home, the family informs Dastur, the local policeman of the sexual assault, with the girl almost immediately identifying the perpetrator as Dhavle, the son of the local governor. However, Dastur is not only unwilling to help, but actually threatens them to drop the whole thing, by hinting on the fact that Manda’s parents have illegal jobs.
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