Starring: Brie Larson,Utkarsh Ambudkar, Scott Bakula, Donald Sutherland
Directed by: Danny Baron
Rating: *(1 star)
The worst possible stereotypes on the Indian ruralscape runs through this puny undernourished tale of an innocent rice breeding community and theavarious imperialists represented by a smirky Donald Sutherland who persuades our heroine , the very talented Brie Larson to undertake a journey through Kerala in pursuit of touristic enlightenment. The kind that you would probably get if you were browsing through a travel brochure.
If superficial fluffy annoying romcoms are your scene you have to give this one try, though even the the most diehard romantic , the kind that sobs on reading Valentine greeting cards, would find it hard to bear the sheer puerility of the presentation.The characters are all bouncy bubble dwellers.
Right after you finish wondering about the most fundamental question regarding this film—why was it made in the first place?—you will wonder why an actress of Brie Larson’s caliber agreed to be part of this chawal-dull thali. You will remember Brie in the wonderful film about boxed-in motherhood Room. Here she is boxed-in in a less physical more spiritual sense,trapped in a no-man’s-land of lachrymose feelings.
The film oozes a kind of unstoppable sickening sweetness as the Enlightened Empowered Western Woman Linda(played with enlightened empowerment by Brie Larson) meets native Keralities who are constantly talking, or eating, or complaining or singing and dancing .You know how the savage native are…One of them is the social crusader Rajat(Utkarsh Ambukar) a playful Noble Savage who has a yen for bursting into songs and dances . Maybe he has been watching too many Bollywood films in his free time.
Rajat and another local rice-boy William(Sahil Sehgal) are the two love interests in Linda’s life.For all we know she may end up marrying one of them.Whatever her decisions in life rest assured it is of no concern to us whatsoever. This is a film that evokes supreme boredom from audiences and a bit of vexation at the vacation that native intelligence takes when a Western mind sets off to court Orientalism by the book.
All the natives speak English with a thick accent. This is a Kerala that exists only in the minds of a certain kind of Westerners who visit India to see theTaj Mahal and ‘Bollywood’.Shallow,incongruous and downright embarrassing for the actors who are made to participate in this retarded rite of passage into a tourist-brochure India Basmati Blues is exasperating enough to put you off Basmati rice forever.