In Their Shoes
Director: Atul Sabharwal
Atul Sabharwal (who directed Aurangazeb) takes up a rather unusual topic for his documentary which talks about the dying shoe industry in Agra. A topic close to his heart since his father has been part of this business even before the Indo-Pak Partition, this film talks about the nostalgia and flourishing of an industry that seems to have lost its relevance with changing times. The slow death of any industry that was part of our historical set up is bound to come with a bit of remorse (personal too for Atul, as he didn’t follow his father’s footsteps at his insistence).
A bit more soul would have made this docu a more engaging watch
Sabharwal takes us through the bylanes and gullies of Agra to get a first hand feel of the world where shoe making has been the mainstay for hundreds of locals for as far long as they can remember. As is the case with many traditional trades, the original leather shoes are sadly being replaced by the shinier Chinese faux version. Sabharwal rather practically, with just a hint of emotion once in a while, tells us about the ailing industry through many interviews.
However, a bit more soul in the documentary would have made this a more engaging watch.