Monday, May 21, 2012
The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel
THE BEST EXOTIC MARIGOLD HOTEL--Directed by John Madden/ Starring Judi Dench, Bill Nighy, Maggie Smith, Tom Wilkinson/screenplay by Ol Parker from a novel by Deborah Moggach/PG-13/ 2hr28min (B) This film renewed my hope for a good film without violence and vulgar sex. I realize sometimes it is necessary for some films, but really, it is not mandatory in every film! Judi Dench doesn’t know how to fail in her performances. She is always, no matter the role, giving a stellar performance. I will add that the other actors were great as well. I loved experiencing the colorful India with a culture all its own. The movie was a little long, but I enjoyed it well enough for it not to matter. I give it three binoculars. Notably, this was the only film opening in Southern California to improve ratings by 22% in the second week. This just goes to show that there is an audience for movies without violdence or explosions, naked young bodies, or gratuitous sex. (G) After the last Academy Awards debacle, I hadn’t had the urge to see many movies. Sure, there were a couple of long flights that required I spend some time staring at the seat-back screen in front of me on the airplane, but other than that I just was not motivated. Then, along came this little film that no one was screening. The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel might have been a little long, but it was the kind of film that leaves the viewer with a positive impression of a culture, of the wonders of travel and of the magic of seeing life “as a privilege and not a right” (as one of the characters in the film is quoted as saying) that just seems to be missing from so many movies these days. Naturally, this one will not reach a wide audience, here in the U.S. until AFTER it is noticed by some awards shows. In England, I’m told the film has already achieved a marked success. And, when it happens that the British love a film, well American success is usually close behind. Even though the film was nearly 2 ½ hours long, and it was “merely a mood piece,” I stlll enjoyed every minute of it. I give this one 3 Binoculars with the option to raise my rating when the awards season begins anew.