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Adaptations of novels are _always_ risky business. But this movie takes the cake.
I thought Mercahnt Ivory would have done better.
What kills the movie is the casting and the dialog delivery: the pronunciation. (What else remains?) Most of the actors look too polished for the roles they play; and they are: they are part of a sophisticated international cast that regularly starts in many "Raj" movies (except Om Puri).
They are used to suave, clipped British accents. And that is painfully obvious when they try to speak in the rural Hindi-Trinidadian mix.
The book does not show them that way. I had imagined them looking like people from the region I have seen in India which features typical of people from that region (you get rare glimpses of such people, esp. at Ganesh's wedding). And speaking like them when they speak English.
Ganesh, The Great Belcher (Zohra Sehgal) et al can hardly conceal their clean, sophisticated inflections On Puri does a poor job overlaying the Bhojpuri-accented English onto his native Punjabi drawl. Such a fine actor...I just kept wishing he speak in Hindi instead...just end the torture...
The results are atrociously comic. On top of all that confusion the actors try to put on an Indian, Apu-the-character-from-Simpsons style of Indian accent. Ugh!
Gawd! I could not see the images in my mind be butchered by the on-screen characterizations...
A western viewer may not observe all these fine points but they were too obvious to me...rather painfully so...
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