DRIVING WITH SELVI (Elisa Paloschi). 74 minutes. Subtitled. Opens Saturday (October 22). For venues and times see listings. Rating: NNNN
It’s taken almost a year for Driving With Selvi to get a theatrical release in Toronto after opening the 2015 Reel Asian film festival. But now, Elisa Paloschi’s inspirational documentary is back, and you should see it.
Selvi is a young Indian woman who fled an abusive marriage to reinvent herself as the first female taxi driver in the city of Karnataka – a hard-won achievement that opened doors to further opportunities.
Paloschi – whose Jane Bunnett study, Embracing Voices, established her as a sensitive and clear-eyed filmmaker – first met Selvi in 2004, and the decade-long friendship between the two is apparent in Selvi’s comfort in front of the camera and her frankness in discussing the ugly past she’s left behind.
The result is an engaging portrait of a confident young woman, set against the backdrop of a changing India.