The adventures of old wits

The adventures of old wits

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Marigold Hotel Film_L
Photo: AP
First, British people outsourced their call centres to Indians. Now they're outsourcing their retirement services.

Directed by John Madden, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel tells the story of six elderly Brits moving to India for a range of reasons. Some want to jump out of their comfort zone for one last change of pace. Others fancy retirement in India simply because life is cheaper there.

Yet over time all six of them begin to reevaluate their views of India and embark on some soul-searching that helps them find a new home in the hectic land.

Madden's challenge is that there is little one can do to break the old dramedy formula. But he does an amazing job of capturing India's colours and vibes - and does that in a movie that boasts witty jokes and an A-list cast.

Veteran actors Judi Dench, Tom Wilkinson and Maggie Smith are on hand to play at our heartstrings. They are masters of their craft and know how to elicit both tears and laughter in turns.

Unlike so many comedies of the moment, this one does not rely on toilet humour to be funny. And despite stereotyping Indians at times, the movie has real heart.

The plot is predictable, but screenwriter Ol Parker throws in an unexpected sub-plot to give the story a kicker. Madden's enlightening film paints a fine portrait of modern India from the eyes of some adorably grumpy octogenarians.

YP Rating: 4/5



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