It is a coming of a age movie with real blood and bone characters. As someone brought up in India in the latter half of twentieth century who has never seen any Caucasians living as residents of the country, it was interesting and informative to see how the whites (not just the ruling class of British citizens) co-existed with the locals and how common it was in pre-independent India.
The story is set in Bengal in an area which falls in the present day Bangladesh. The Indians in the story celebrate Hindu festivals of Diwali and Holi. The director Jean Renoir shows the landscape of India in vibrant colors, but none which feels synthetic like a Bollywood movie or the caricature of India portrayed in the Temple of Doom or many other Hollywood movies fully or partially based in India. Like the director, the writer of the story, Rumer Golden deserves credit for having the guns to stick to reality.