Polite Society Movie Review

This title may have you thinking you’re in the neighborhood of watching a movie about people being sweet as they pass one another on the street and such.

This couldn’t be further from the truth. IMMEDIATELY, I thought I was in a Quentin Tarantino or Edgar Wright film. I looked up at the sign to make sure I hadn’t wandered into the wrong theater. So, get any loving strangers’ ideas out of your head. ​

The movie shows us how, currently, close sisters Ria (Priya Kansara) and Lena Khan (Ritu Arya) are. Shortly in, what it becomes most about is and how desperate Ria is to stop her big sister from making the biggest mistake of her life. No little sister wants a family member to run off and leave her behind.

After meeting everyone, this is where the story goes. Ria doesn’t want who she considers to be one of her best friends to marry someone she barely knows and intends to stop it.


The baby in the family wants to be a stunt woman. She studies martial arts with great passion, dreaming of being the best one day. Lena helps her with her YouTube page and creates videos with her. She also tells Ria where she’s failing and what, as Lena sees it, she needs to do to improve.

The movie is presented in chapters. Chapter one is about the tale of the two sisters. You learn a lot about them in this first chapter but get a little confused thinking that Lena isn’t as, we’ll say, sharp as she is proven to be later in the film. Why Lena isn’t seen as being someone who can take care of herself is the only flaw I saw in the stunning picture.


Lena’s an artist who loves painting, something Ria admires about her. She supports what Ria wants to do with her life and believes she has what it takes to make it. Lena lets her sister attempt to kick her ass in the gym, but Ria needs to practice more if she wants to be the “Fury” she keeps calling herself. Can she? The chapter is hysterical and very clever.


In the second chapter, Lena meets someone. Ria despises the man, Salim (Akshay Khanna), so she and her band of friends are going to do all they can to break her away from this patriarchal wanker. Some of these are a bit silly and slow things down but don’t take away any of the fun you’ll be having watching this looney sister with her zany ideas of keeping her life the way it has always been. Lena has a reason to move on from her art, too. She thinks she’s not any good. Moving on from it is what she needs to do.

This is not acceptable to Ria. After being so annoying, Ria is not only angering her sister, but her parents have had about enough of Ria’s shoving her way into everyone’s lives, too.


Ria wants her sister to go back to being the girl who was happy in front of an empty canvas. Lena demands her sister leave her the hell alone and let her make her own choices. A knockdown, drag-out fight happens upstairs, doors come off of hinges, body parts go flying through walls, biting one another (drawing blood) occurs and furniture gets broken. As if this was something normal between the girls, their parents, who are downstairs, look up at the ceiling. They listen, seeming to appear as though they hope at least one of their children comes out alive. I was dying laughing.


We learn there is reason for Ria to be concerned about Salim… and his mother, Raheela (Nimra Bucha), too. Raheela may come off as loving, caring and kind when there are guests at her house, but Ria finds out she’s more like a snake wrapped in soft caterpillar fur when no one’s watching.

In chapter five, Ria and her friends devise a plan to get her to her guarded sister by telling people they need to get to her because “It’s her time. Heavy flow.” The reason this is conceived and how it’s all played out is very humorous and another reason to delight in the film overall. I beg you to stay away from trailers and reviews in case you’re given too much information about these characters. Whatever you thought this movie was, it isn’t. I assure you, it’s much better. It offers a lot of impressively written characters, an abundance of hilarity and is the perfect film for you to see this weekend!


For more information, please follow the film on social:

Official Site | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram




Polite Society


Writer/Director: Nida Manzoor
Starring: Priya Kansara, Ritu Arya, Nimra Bucha, Akshay Khanna, Seraphina Beh, Ella Bruccoleri

Rated: PG-13 (Strong Language|Some Partial Nudity|Sexual Material|Violence)
Run Time: 1h 43m
Genres: Action, Comedy


Producers: Tim Bevan, Eric Fellner, Olivier Kaempfer, John Pocock

Composer: Tom Howe, Shez Manzoor

Editor: Robbie Morrison

Cinematographer: Ashley Connor

Distributor: Focus Features



tmc.io contributor: ShariK.Green tmc
I'm the Sr. Film Writer and Community Manager for tmc.io. I write, direct and produce short films with my production company, Good Stew Productions. Though it's difficult to answer this question when asked, I'd say my favorite movie is “The Big Chill.” I enjoy photography, poetry, and hiking and I adore animals, especially elephants. I live in Arizona and feel it's an outstanding and inspirational place to live.

What's your take?

Free movie screenings and more.
Watch movies with friends.