by Mira Nair
A last minute arranged marriage joins together the
Verma family from all around the world. The family re-unites in New Delhi
to join in the celebrations with the bride and groom-to-be. But as the
temperature rises so do the revelations...
Mira Nair's Monsoon Wedding is a return to the form
of Salaam Bombay!, her 1988 feature. Nair's gift for observation of
the everyday and love for her characters makes for a delightful film, with
the whole web of family relationships that knit and break during a wedding
being spun at a perfect pace.
The excellent performances exceed the often stereotypical roles on
offer; the incomparable Nasiruddin Shah as the harassed father, Kulbhushan
Kharbanda as the comic uncle, or Shefali Chaya as the orphaned cousin.
Nair's sympathetic eye for the unnoticed and the harassed is at its best
when showing the tender romance between the servant and Dube (Vijay Raaz),
the marigold-munching upwardly-mobile wedding coordinator, who brings
pathos and humour to the often unseen servant classes.
On the DVD: The viewer should watch the film once with Dolby
Digital 5.1, then again with the director's commentary, with its excellent
social analysis and fascinating anecdotal history. It would have been good to have had
a full soundtrack of the songs but the viewer will have to buy the CD.
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