Yellow Bus

Yellow Bus FL, 2023, 3 stars

Justice in an unjust land

Image courtesy of Enzian / Florida Film Festival

Exclusive to MeierMovies, April 11, 2024

When you’re a stranger in a strange land – like Indian emigrants Ananda (Tannishtha Chatterjee), her husband (Amit Sial) and their two daughters – life is already tough. Unaccustomed to Islam, Arabic and the general culture of her new home in the Middle East, Ananda feels isolated. But when a tragic accident takes the life of the couple’s youngest daughter, Ananda’s grief overwhelms her, threatening her marriage and her future.

“Imagine living in a country where you’re not seen,” Ananda says. But despite those feelings of disrespect, and her profound loss, Ananda forces herself to be seen by confronting those responsible for her daughter’s death.

The feature debut of writer-director Wendy Bednarz has its heart in the right place but suffers from slow pacing, predictability and contrivance. In addition, the stakes never seem high enough for Ananda, as those responsible for the tragedy were partially held accountable from the very beginning. But Yellow Bus succeeds because of claustrophobic cinematography (Sofian El Fani, Blue Is the Warmest Color), cultural commentary and Chatterjee’s plaintive performance. Misgivings aside, I felt I was on that yellow bus with Ananda’s daughter when she was left to die in the scorching Arabian heat.

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This capsule review is part of my coverage of the 2024 Florida Film Festival. To find out when this movie is playing and buy tickets, go to For more information about the event and an index of reviews of other festival films, go here. For more information on this movie, visit IMDB.