3 Movies Like Sri Asih (2022)

Staff & contributors

It’s hard to overstate just how lovely — and quietly radical — this largely improvised Canadian docudrama is. The scenario (seven elderly women and their tour bus driver are stranded in the Canadian wilderness for a few days) is contrived, but the rich, lively conversations that feature are all drawn from the women’s real lives. As they hunker down and get on with the business of surviving with meager food — something they manage to do largely thanks to the bushcraft skills of Mohawk elder Alice — the strangers reflect on their long lives and open up to each other about their lingering fears and still-burning hopes.

They’re a diverse bunch — featuring Cockney transplants, lesbian pioneers, and nuns — and the film’s brief cuts to real photos from the women’s earlier years both underscore the rawness of what they’re saying and serve as testaments to the rich fullness of their lives. The Company of Strangers grants these women the kind of serious consideration and space that they’re denied in so many public spaces, but it never feels like a strained exercise in redressing that imbalance. Instead, this is simply a gentle, gorgeous, and profoundly moving portrait of women who aren’t done living yet.

Genre: Adventure, Drama

Actor: Alice Diabo, Beth Webber, Catherine Roche, Cissy Meddings, Constance Garneau, Michelle Sweeney, Winifred Holden

Director: Cynthia Scott

Ordinary people don’t choose to join a war, but oftentimes, they are dragged into it, forced to fight, and become victims of it because of people in power. Adrishya Jalakangal takes this idea in a dystopic future, where war has turned India into a police state, and mixes in a watchman who’s able to talk with the dead. While the message is necessary and the idea is novel, the execution feels uneven, as the anti-war and magic realist elements feel like elements from what should be two separate movies. Alongside the sluggish pace and the dialogue that’s a tad too on the nose, it’s hard to get through Adrishya Jalakangal when it can’t decide what it wants to focus on.

Genre: Drama, Thriller

Actor: Indrans, Krishnan Balakrishnan, Nimisha Sajayan, Tovino Thomas

Director: Bijukumar Damodaran

This is a nostalgic, ethereal memory like a childhood yearning, which can be credited to the soundtrack and friendly characters. Its got a lovely message about unspoken or repressed feelings, but the journey there unravels quickly. The second act enters filler side quest territory and loses the energetic pace and tight direction of the exposition. In the end, the premise and pretty visuals feel almost wasted on an ill-paced bloated story, one that tries to capture a wistfulness or magic but ends up feeling forced and manufactured. This is one of those movies you wish was the first movie you ever watched as a child. You won’t have a clue what it was about, but you'll remember it was nice.

Genre: Adventure, Animation, Family, Fantasy

Actor: Aya Yamane, Hisako Kyoda, Kensho Ono, Mio Tanaka, Mitsuho Kambe, Miyu Tomita, Noriko Hidaka, Satoshi Mikami, Satsuki Yukino, Shintaro Asanuma, Shirou Saitou, Shouzou Sasaki, Tomoko Shiota

Director: Tomotaka Shibayama

Rating: PG-13