Directed by John Madden and written by Ol Parker, this star-studded cast features Jude Dench, Bill Nighy, Maggie Smith, Tom Wilkinson, Penelope Wilton, Ronald Pickup and Dev Patel. The film finds a group of older people all looking for a change in their lives, well nearly all of them, and decide to go to India to the Marigold hotel. Not all is as advertised.
From the out set the cast is all fantastic, all strong performances by seasoned actors. One name which I have to mention, as for me he was a clear highlight of the whole thing is Dev Patel, an excellent young actor who has huge potential and seems to be growing year by year. You can see him weekly in The Newsroom. I wont go into more detail with the cast as Dev Patel is the clear winner and holds his own against all these actors. Besides there are just too many to mention and I don’t talk about spoilers.
The place it’s self is beautiful with amazing colours to attract the audience in, the only problem I had with this film is the plot. It’s a very nice set up for all involved, but by the middle it feels lost. Though this may be the feeling the director was trying to get across by being lost in India and letting yourself go to discover a whole new side of life, its more of a lost and bored feeling. Indeed I don’t think it should have been as long as it was.
Of course things go wrong but are later changed and corrected leaving people where they ought to be, however in this period of being lost and bored it feels like everything that happens to each character is too easy and just fits too well into their characters to create a comic scene. One example of this is Maggie Smith’s character, she plays an elderly woman who need hip surgery so is sent to India to get it. She is racist and refuses to eat anything she can’t pronounce or isnt british. So when there she is stuck in a wheelchair for days, she can’t move anywhere her self, she is then brought to a family which she can’t stand, forced to eat their food while they watch and then walked through the street full of people she doesn’t like. So in that sense it seems too easy for the comedy to ensue when really they could have gone deeper.
Having said that there are some wonderful comedic moments in this and some really beautiful charming moments. Indeed this is just a really nice easy film to watch, little depth other than for a few characters.
Again another film with too much hype then it’s worth. To say its a 5 star film is a overstatment, it’s simply and nice film to watch on a friday evening. All down to the plot im afraid as the cast is excellent the script is good and the set is beautiful, the plot just fails to keep up.
OVERALL *** Simply put a nice, beautiful looking film. Easy on the eyes and not much concentration required with an excellent cast.