Review: Stray Dolls

One little crime, that’s all it takes. Someone may commit this out of greed or coercion, perhaps you just want to experience that thrill, or maybe you do it to survive in a cruel, unbalanced society. Sonejuhi Sinha’s directorial feature debut, ‘Stray Dolls’ (2019) cautions that one small deed can excessively spiral with disastrous, life-altering consequences.
Upon arriving in America, Riz finds herself in what she perceives as temporary accommodation with a live-in job at a motel run by Una, played by Cynthia Nixon. The motel dishevelled and visibly no five-star establishment houses a variety of secrets, seedy characters and allegories of the shattered perceptions many have with the States. Upon destroying her passport, Una at first establishes herself as an antagonist but has little part to play until the climax of the film. Tidying rooms, Riz is forced to share with a volatile, disenchanted young woman named Dallas, who coerces Riz into enacting one small theft in exchange for returning a stolen photograph.
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