SYNOPSIS

The oldest auction house in India is fighting for survival in the age of eBay and a changing Calcutta. This film follows its owners, two charismatic brothers reunited after 40 years apart, as they struggle to save their family business . 

 

Elder brother Anwer recently returned to his homeland after a lifelong career in the UK and is desperate to revive the fortunes of his beloved auction house. It was purchased from the British by his grandfather in 1940 and has been in the Saleem family ever since. But the odds are stacked against him – a chaotic, fragmented city; an ailing workforce and most notably his quarrelsome younger brother…

Younger brother Arshad, India’s longest-standing auctioneer, has worked at The Russell Exchange since the 1960s and knows the place, and the world of antiques, inside out. He's steeped in the city’s traditions and is sceptical about Anwer’s plans for change. He believes that Kolkata is a city is in terminal decline and the auction house is destined to die out along with it.

As the brothers come to terms with each other and their future, their amusing, argumentative, but ultimately heartfelt relationship opens up a wider insight on whether old family businesses and unique places like the Russell Exchange can still have a place amidst the economic realities of 21st century India.

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