I’ll admit, I was disappointed with this film. The storyline was completely unrealistic, to say the least! It is about 6 old people who, magically find themselves in India, all for different reasons and meet. And then become best friends and then there is old people love and such!
It started off funny, I quite enjoy ethnic banter, though I am not sure that it something I should admit to! I mean, I don’t like malicious racism…why would I? But teasing with people you are really good friends with is moderately funny. Believe me when I say I am not a genuine racist! Anyway, started off and I though, well this is a good film! Excellent performance by Maggie Smith, I thought, she added to the humour. Actually no, I lied, she was the humour in this film…no one else! You could almost believe that Maggie Smith was a genuine racist from watching this film! I love her comment that old people can’t think too far into the future and that she won’t even risk buying green bananas! I just found her funny, and yes the film is worth seeing purely for her. But that’s not always enough! The comedy was good but by the end it had completely died and had turned into some romantic film about old people and please, don’t forget the cheesiness! This film was not lacking in cheesy lines and a cringey storyline!
So in this film there is (from left to right of the above):
- Muriel, played by Maggie Smith, a lonely old lady who goes over for a hip replacement who hates foreigners and took a sufficient amount of hobnobs over with her.
- Norman, played by Ronald Pickup, who is searching for love and just wants to feel young again! He goes to India for new experiences and hopes to find a woman out there.
- Douglas, played by Bill Nighy, is loyal to his wife Jean. His daughter asks them to lend her some money with the promise to pay them back but the internet business is a fail and they lose a lot of money. They move to India because they can’t face buying a little house in England.
- Jean, played by Penelope Wilton, has been married to Douglas for 39 years and also moves out to India although it unhappy with life over there and wats to go back to England almost immediately.
- Madge, played by Celia Imrie, is alike to Norman and has had failed with numerous marriages and is in India looking for a new man and adventure. Like Norman, she can’t face up to her age.
- Evelyn, played by Judi Dench, recently widowed she moves over to India to start a new life and because her husband has left her with many a debt to pay off! She wants to do something independently as she never has.
- Graham, played by Tom Wilkinson, is a retired High Court Judge and moves to India to die and also to find the man who he has been in love with his whole life.
Although my main problem with this film was that it was unrealistic. Surely that list already sounds ridiculous. Well add this, the are all staying in a hotel which is falling to pieces. Now I would like to address the unrealistic things which ALL the characters do! Firstly we have Muriel who turns out not to be a racist and saves the hotel…even though she hated it when she arrived and wanted nothing more than to leave. Then we have Norman who magically finds the woman of his dreams and they promptly move in together. Douglas and Jean end with a divorce. Although Jean has been flaunting herself at Graham and is horrified to discover that he is gay and she is embarrassed…what is more embarrassing is that she only refers to him as “Your Honour”. Meanwhile Douglas has been getting it on with Evelyn, which may seem innocent to begin with, but no it is so much more than that. Madge remains moderately sane throughout. And then Graham dies the day after giving his old love one big hug. Also the owner wants to marry a girl who his mother does not agree with but then at the end the mother was a woman who her husband’s mother had not agreed with either but because they loved each other it worked. Now 40 years on the same exact thing is happening in the same exact family. No. Now please don’t try to tell me this would happen in real life at all? Ok, so real life is boring but it is meant to give people hope but this is too far out of proportion for it to give hope…because people know LIFE ISN’T LIKE THAT!
There were times when I did enjoy this film and overall I guess I did, but I wouldn’t buy the DVD and wouldn’t recommend anyone else go and see it. Frankly it was a disappointment as I had expected it to be better, with that cast, it really ought to have been.