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Ship of Theseus

An elegant documentary style drama, set in contemporary Mumbai, about three separate philosophical stories, which converge at a single point of illumination.

Even if a screening is sold out, tickets are often available 30 minutes before the start of the film at the box office at each venue.

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  • Director-Screenwriter Anand Gandhi
  • Producer Mukesh Shah
  • With Aida El-Kashef, Neeraj Kabi, Sohum Shah
  • India 2012
  • 139 mins
  • UK distribution Fortissimo Films

An astounding tour de force by first-feature filmmaker Anand Gandhi leads us through three separate stories in contemporary Mumbai, which culminate in ultimate illumination. An idealist monk is involved in animal-rights activism but, being diagnosed with cancer, he is forced to make a choice between death and medicine that is tested on animals. A photographer is celebrated for her intuitive work, but she also struggles over how both she and her art are viewed by others. A young stockbroker nurses his grandmother in a hospital. When he discovers that a neighbouring patient has had his kidney stolen, his concern leads him on the trail of an organ-smuggling racket and eventually to confront the recipient patient in Europe. Following the separate strands of this trio’s philosophical journeys, and their eventual convergence, Gandhi’s elegant docu-drama style film carefully unfolds questions of identity, justice, beauty and death.
Cary Sawhney

Director statement

Ship of Theseus is a philosophical paradox of identity and change. As the planks of Theseus’s ship needed repair, it was replaced part by part, up to a point where not a single part from the original ship remained in it anymore. Is it, then, still the same ship? My film probes this question in a metaphorical sense – how do we know where we end and our environment begins?
Anand Gandhi

Director biography

A first-time feature filmmaker, born in 1980 in Mumbai, he started writing for TV soaps at the age of 19, and in the same year won a National Award for his first play, Sugandhi. He then completed studies in philosophy. His previous short films include Right Here, Right Now, which won Best Short Film at the Syracuse International Film Festival, the Audience Award at Shnit Film Festival, and screened in competition at Tribeca, and Continuum, which won Best Film at the Hannover International Film Festival.


2003 Right Here, Right Now [s]
2006 Continuum [s]
2012 Ship of Theseus

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