The wistful animation “Bombay Rose” (streaming on Netflix) paints modern-day Mumbai as an impressionistic cityscape the place blurry road retailers hawk blobs that is likely to be marigolds or oranges or heaps of turmeric. It’s as if the director, Gitanjali Rao, sharpens her focus solely on the faces of two star-crossed lovers — Salim (voiced by Amit Deondi), a refugee from Kashmir, and Kamala (Cyli Khare), an escaped baby bride — who promote flowers on reverse sides of a thoroughfare.
As he’s Muslim and he or she’s Hindi (and nonetheless married), their romance principally exists of their creativeness. But it’s of their daydreams that Rao meticulously provides patterned trim to saris and a shine to the spoons, making them wealthy with particulars that don’t exist in Salim and Kamala’s hardscrabble lives on this harsh metropolis.
Salim footage himself a swaggering Bollywood hero rescuing his sweetheart from the trafficker who desires to promote her to doubtful consumers in Dubai. Kamala imagines them embracing in India’s royal previous. And they’re not the one ones dissatisfied with actuality. Elsewhere, an older movie actress insists on residing in her black-and-white heyday, whereas her suitor, an antiques vendor, laments that younger consumers not see the worth in heirlooms.
The nostalgic ruminations of “Bombay Rose” have the texture of one of many classic music packing containers that an actress tuts over whereas speaking to her lifeless co-star. The film is gorgeous, however airless and bolted with scraps that hardly maintain collectively.
Ironically, Rao’s extra up to date beats wind up being the swooniest: a wet kiss blocked by a moist automobile window that enables the couple to slide again out of focus — a nod to Bollywood’s kissing taboo — and the concept if Salim’s corny, mustachioed film heroes can’t save the day, maybe it’s time to consider in a extra humble film heroine.
Rated PG-13 for the suggestion of intercourse work. Running time: 1 hour 33 minutes. Watch on Netflix.