I was lucky to visit one of London’s best cinema’s to see my favourite film of the year so far – The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. A British comedy, which I originally thought was going to be a bit of a ‘raa-raa’ filled with its cast of British Legends. But as it has persisted in the cinema since January, I thought it would be worth a shout. And so did the rest of the picture house – the cinema was almost full. Unfortunately with the type of audience that would normally make me shudder. Old people.
Gasp – I am in a cinema for the retired! Watching a film about the retired! Is this a film for me?
Thank goodness for British Comedy. You see, the great thing about the British sense of humour is that it is legendary. First of all, the bulk of people in the UK are actually quite humourless. This could be through irony, or through the fact that most Brits are miserable. Maybe it is the weather. Who knows? But the British can make a great comedy. That has mass appeal. Just like Indian films, British Comedies are designed for everyone. Young, old, abroad and at home, to make an impact in the cinema and for years to come on television. While British films oin general suffer from bad marketing in general, its comedies are actually one of the stronger points of the general European cinematic scene. A bit like avant garde French films, comedies are what defines British film making at its best. And The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel surely proved that.
Everyone in the cinema, me included laughed their heads off at the antic of…yes, old people. Who thought that a bunch of retirees could be so funny, but the plot line was fantastic, along with great acting. And also, surprisingly touching. While Best Marigold was a comedy, there was a lot of heart. Particular kudos has to go to Tom Wilkinson and the writers who penned his character’s story. It was possibly one of the most heartfelt moments in recent cinema. I will not spoil this moment, it is something that you have to see. Plus it is great to see Dev Patel on screen again, he is cool a what he does!
The only complaint I have to make (and it is small) is the underutilisation of Lillete Dubey (best known to western audiences through Monsoon Wedding). She was just not used enough, and to have added her character’s story to the ensemble would have made this film truly heartwarming, and added another dimension to the film.
However, I will not detract, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel is definitely the best film I have seen this year. Entertaining, fun with some real big heart moments, it lets you walk out of the cinema with a smile on your face and longing to have one more go to watch it again, either on cinema or on TV. Well worth my two hours of time, I cannot recommend this movie enough!