Less than enticing tale of childhood in a small Indian town at the time of coming independence, taken from the Malgudi (town) tales of RK Narayan. It focuses on a 9-year-old boy, Swamy, son of a Hindi lawyer, who finds his Eurocentric school lessons (Lisbon is the capital of Spain, he's told) and the sadistic religious-affairs teacher to his distaste. New pal Rajam, son of the local police superintendent, sparks arguments in the playground with assertive Mani, but all is partly resolved over a game of cricket. Episodic and poorly paced, the film is rumoured to have been compiled from a kiddies' TV series, and the politics look like street theatre. Best scenes are of the kids chucking stones by the riverside.