Circa 1940 in Trinidad, still a British Colony, lives Ganesh Ramseyor, of East Indian origin, along with his wife, Leela. He longs to reach out to people, especially to Hindus, in order to promote the Hindu Faith, and be known as a writer. He does get considerable success, so much so that he becomes famous as a miracle worker, having cured a man of sharing intimacy with his bicycle; prevented a man from believing that he can fly; and convincing a young woman to end her fast. His fame spreads all over the island and thousands throng to seek his blessings, which he does dole out quite benevolently, without charging any fees from the poor and the needy. He then decides to spread his wings by challenging the local politician Pandit Narayan Chandrashekhar alias Cyrus T., and takes over The Hindu Organization, thence opening his way to a seat in the prestigious Member of the Legislative Assembly. Now literally the sky is the limit for Ganesh, and he knows that he can achieve any position - ... Written by
another charming, non-commercial Merchant-Ivory opus
I have not read the V.S. Naipaul book from which this film was adapted, but I surmise that, like other early Naipaul work (A House For Mr. Biswas comes to mind), the book must have had a light, amusing touch. The film certainly does...I found it winning and delightful throughout. The acting was consistently fine, the Trinidadian ambiance was evocative, and the plot moved along wonderfully. Between the rather unappealing title, the no-name cast (well, almost no names that American audiences will recognize), and a total lack of slam-bang action, I'm afraid that the likelihood is that you will have a hard time finding this in any theater already. If you can find it, you ought to check it out. If not, look for it as a rental soon. But don't pass it by.
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