The bustling streets of the noisy city have been muted by a strike called by the infamous Communist Party of Calcutta. Unaware of the political implications, newcomer Adi Chaterji ventures into one of the city’s most sensitive locales. His purpose - to deliver his theory notes to his best friend Kishor a day before their exams. Having delivered the photocopies, Adi decides on taking a taxi back due to the lack of public transit. He considers himself fortunate on finding a taxi on the deserted main street. Adi puts his backpack in the backseat and requests the driver/Rasul to wait as he gets himself a bottle of water. A stupefied Adi on his return discovers the cab has taken off with his backpack. Frantically running around the street Adi finds another cab and explains the situation to the driver/Bakul and his helper/Murari.
Meanwhile cab driver Bakul has his own agenda to fulfill. Originally from a wealthy family, Bakul became an orphan at an early age and lost more than his parents. His fate has changed his beliefs and twisted his definition of rights and wrongs. Seemingly an atheist who quotes Bhagvat Geeta, in reality however falls shy of practicing his own convoluted principles. He sees Adi’s situation as an opportunity to do good without loosing his sight of the reward. He misinterprets Adi’s bag full of notes to be a bag full of money as he steps on the gas.
On reaching a major intersection, Adi notices his old cabdriver Rasul held captive by a hefty traffic cop, and 5 other policemen trying to fit into the front seat of his
cab. He sees his backpack sitting at the backseat where he had initially left it. Assuming justice has been served and the thief has been caught, Adi reaches in and pulls his backpack out. No sooner has he done this, someone in the crowd shouts ‘It’s a BOMB’. The entire crowd ducks down in a mad frenzy, as Adi mistakenly becomes the guy in the crowd holding a bomb.
Set in the grimy backdrop of a city going through a political crisis, Calcutta Taxi unravels the story of three lives that coincide and affect each other. Each one having lost and found some things in this chance encounter of life.
Best Drama 2013, OSCAR QUALIFIER Aspen Short Film Festival, USA
Directorial Discovery Award, Rhode Island International Film Festival, USA
Best Narrative Short, Roving Eye International Film Festival, USA
Best Short Film (Audience Choice), Florence River to River Film Festival, Italy
Best of the Fest, Anchorage International Film Festival, Alaska
German Star (Best Short Film), Stuttgart International Film Festival, Germany
Press/Critic’s Award (Best Short Film), Sedicicorto International Film Festival, Italy
Recipient of three BRAVO! Fact Awards Short Series (Screenplay)
Recipient of the Filmmaker’s Assistant Program, National Film Board, Canada